During September and October 2014, we held a blogging competition for the members of the MindTech Public Reference Group.

The purpose of the competition was twofold:

  • first, give members of the group an opportunity to create a blog post around mental health and technology
  • second, to award the winner a place at the NIHR INVOLVE national conference on behalf of MindTech.

Entrants were asked to create a blog post, using which ever media they preferred (text, photos, film, podcast, collage), about their own views and/or experiences of either using or thinking about technology for mental health. Social media pioneers and prolific bloggers, Victoria Betton (mHealth Habitat programme director, Leeds @VictoriaBetton ) and Mark Brown (Development Director, Social Spider CIC, London @Markoneinfour ) assessed the entries and chose the winner. They also gave really constructive and helpful feedback on the content and style of blog entries.

We're delighted that the first prize winner, Paul Radin, has set up a blog and posted his entry as his first post – see http://paulradin.wordpress.com/

On hearing he had won, Paul said 'I'd been thinking about blogging for quite a while; this competition has given me the nudge that I needed. It's a revelation to me that a piece of writing can so easily connect you with like-minded people all over the world'

Runners up prizes of Amazon vouchers were awarded to Iain Dimmock and Glen Swanwick.

The INVOLVE conference in November is the key national platform for those interested in patient and user involvement in research. Attending the conference will enable Paul to develop his knowledge and networks around involvement in research and report back on the conference to MindTech. We look forward to hearing more about his experience – via another blog post!