Inaugural judging panel for Reporting Homelessness Prize announced

Wednesday 14 December 2022

We are delighted to announce the judging panel for the new Orwell Prize for Reporting Homelessness, sponsored by the Centre for Homelessness Impact.

The Prize will be chaired by distinguished journalist and editor Alan Rusbridger. Alan is joined by an expert panel including John Bird MBE, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Big Issue magazine, Leanna Fairfax, Evidence and Data assistant at the Centre for Homelessness Impact and award winning journalist, podcast, radio and TV presenter Sangita Myska.

Welcoming the new panel, Liz Wallace, Deputy Director of The Orwell Foundation, said:

Between them our judges bring journalistic rigour, an eye for factual solutions journalism, lived experience and specialisms in data and gender within housing research. It’s hard to imagine a stronger panel of judges for our inaugural year of The Orwell Prize for Reporting Homelessness.

Inspired by George Orwell’s own iconic writing and reporting, The Orwell Prize for Reporting Homelessness will be awarded to reporting and/or commentary on homelessness.

Entries are encouraged from people who are experiencing or have experienced homelessness in all its forms, as well as journalists shining a light on homelessness today.

The 2023 Prize will recognise work first created or published between 1st April 2021 and 31st March 2023 and the winner, who will receive a cash prize of £3,000, will be announced at The Orwell Festival in June 2023. The deadline for entries is 31st March 2023.


Alan Rusbridger (Chair)

At the Guardian, Alan Rusbridger launched both the Weekend magazine and G2 before editing the paper for 20 years from 1995-2015. He left to become Principal of Lady Margaret Hall in Oxford and is now back editing again, this time at Prospect Magazine. He has authored three books including Play it Again, describing how a passion for amateur piano and clarinet playing had helped balance his stressful working life. Alan also chairs the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

John Bird

John Bird MBE is the co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Big Issue magazine. John first experienced homelessness at the age of five, spending some of the rest of his childhood in condemned slum housing and an orphanage. As an adult, he lived on the streets of London and Edinburgh. He now sits as a Crossbench peer in the House of Lords.

Leanna Fairfax

Leanna Fairfax is a PhD researcher at Sheffield Hallam University. Her research interests are housing, gender and homelessness. She is also an Evidence and Data assistant at the Centre for Homelessness Impact.

Sangita Myska

Sangita Myska is an award winning journalist, podcast, radio and TV presenter now at LBC after a BBC career spanning News, Current Affairs, General Factual and Consumer Affairs programmes. Sangita won particular acclaim for her television investigation into child trafficking across EU borders. Also passionate about her documentary work, she co-created and presented the factual solutions journalism series Positive Thinking on BBC Radio 4.

Sponsored by The Centre for Homelessness Impact

The Centre for Homelessness Impact is an independent organisation which seeks to act as a catalyst for evidence-led change to enable people working in and around homelessness to achieve breakthrough results. The Centre currently sponsors The Orwell Prize for Reporting Homelessness, which will be awarded for the first time in 2023.