Vasculitis awareness – it’s harder than I thought

I take my hat off to all of you who have flown the flag for Vasculitis awareness month by contacting the media and getting articles published and even interviews. I am taking part, along with my daughter Sarah in Martyn’s 31 mile Worcestershire Way walk for Vasculitis UK and I thought this would be a good opportunity to get an article in my local papers for Vasculitis awareness month. I e-mailed my two local papers telling them about the walk along with a photo of us both on one of our training walks. I also used the excellent Vasculitis UK template telling them about the disease and my own particular story. Looking at what generally features in these local papers I really thought this was quite newsworthy. Apparently not. Neither paper printed it nor did they even have the courtesy to acknowledge they had received my e-mail. Am I expecting too much or have other people experienced similar barriers?

9 Replies

  • You never know your luck things may still get in. I phoned the relevant reporter for the local paper (in North London) she wrote a report from initial conversation, must have looked up a few bits and pieces sent a photographer round. We never went in first week I contacted again etc What I did not know until now is that the editorial decisions are not made locally by a local team but centrally somewhere by group editors.

    Just have another go:)

  • Thanks for that. The walk isn't until 29 June, so I suppose there is still time to slip it in. Hopefully there will be a week when they are desperately short of news.


  • Hi Chris

    I think it is all about timing.

    Wait until there is not much else happening and then try again.

    Mine got in just before May day. Must have been a quiet week.

    When do the politicians break up? Will there be time to do it then?

    Good luck.

    Keep trying, at least they will know your name even is they say 'not him again'

    Lynne x

  • Thanks for the tip. Looks like perseverance is needed


  • You may need to be persistent. It took me 2 attempts to get in the local papers here Chris. It also 2 emails and a phonecall to local radio before I got a reply. Maybe try and cross refer to the articles in the Worcester press to prove newsworthy ?

  • Thanks, it sounds like it's worth giving it another go.

    We've now done the whole of the WW in three stages. That last bit over the Malverns is going to be a killer, if I ever get there.

  • You really know how to motivate Chris!

  • Hi chris I think that's a real shame that your local papers didn't pick up on your fundraising - I do it was newsworthy. I think sometimes its sheer luck and timing whether they feature your news depending on what else is going on. Don't give up though. It's sometimes worthy phoning the news desk to tell them about the event - they do get inundated with press releases but once you have their attention they will look out for yours. It's a good idea to give them a bit if notice - at least a week, possibly two - as they prefer covering things before they happen. You could always invite them to take a photo of you with rucksacks and walking boots- sometimes they prefer to talk their own photo. Its a good idea to stress how rare your disease is and that it is life-threatening, even though that may feel embarrassing. Hope that helps - I only know these things as my job is to try and get media coverage for my employer and I used to be a journalist in the West Midlands - and don't be too disheartened for next time it can just be luck of the draw.

  • Hi Katie,

    The message I'm getting does seem to be keep trying. I have done just that. The VUK template that I used is very helpful because it explains how rare and how serious the disease can be. Thanks for your advice. Fingers crossed.

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