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£100,000 donation marks ten years of Journalism Diversity Fund

The 10th anniversary of the Journalism Diversity Fund has been marked with a £100,000 donation to the cause.

NLA media access, the collecting society for UK newspapers, revealed the donation at an awards ceremony hosted by Associated Newspapers on Tuesday.

The JDF was set up by the newspaper industry in 2005 and supports the training of journalists from ethnically and socially diverse backgrounds by meeting the financial cost of completing an NCTJ-accredited course.

The donation brings the NLA’s total support for JDF to over £1m.

At the event, the JDF also announced the launch of the new Thomas Read bursary, awarded to help aspiring journalists with a disability.

The bursary has been established in memory of Thomas Read, a sports journalist for Sky who passed away suddenly in early 2015, and is funded by donations from friends and family.

Kevin and Carolyn Read presenting the Thomas Read bursary award to Gemma Louise Hodgson. Credit: Daily Mail.

Kevin and Carolyn Read presenting the Thomas Read bursary award to Gemma Louise Hodgson. Credit: Daily Mail.

The first recipient is Gemma Louise Hodgson, pictured above receiving the bursary, who is currently studying at St Mary’s University.

David Pugh, NLA media access managing director, said: “Supporting journalists from disadvantaged backgrounds is vital if the media is to retain a voice that is as diverse as the issues it reports on.

“We are committed to the supporting the success of the newspaper industry and young people who want to forge a career in journalism.

“The JDF is fantastic in providing opportunities to applicants whose careers could otherwise be disadvantaged by their circumstance.”

Joanne Butcher, NCTJ chief executive, added: “It’s been a pleasure to manage the JDF over the past 10 years. NLA media access has been a source of constant support and, together with other sponsors of the fund, have provided almost 200 exceptional journalists with the financial means to secure the training they need.

“Both sponsors and supporters of the fund have worked hard to improve the make-up of their newsrooms and ensure they reflect the communities they serve.

“We hope the next decade sees more socially and ethnically diverse reporters take their place at UK publishers and broadcasters.”