The European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) have launched the 2019 Edgar Scene Prize competition, with the theme “My ideal employer – Work without barriers for people with RMDs”. The prize was established in memory of the late Edgar Stene, the founder and Secretary General of the Norwegian Rheumatism Association, who also lived with Ankylosing Spondylitis.

Every year, EULAR and EULAR’s Standing Committee of PARE offer the Edgar Stene Prize for the best essay based on a specific topic. The winner receives a prize money of €1000, awarded during the opening plenary session of the 20th EULAR Annual European Congress of Rheumatology in Madrid, Spain in June 2019, where the winner will also present their essay as an oral presentation to delegates of the congress.  The winner will also be provided with travel to Madrid, and hotel accommodation for up to 4 nights, as well as an invitation to the Congress dinner. The runner up will be awarded €700 and the essay in third place will win €300.

In 2018, Magdalena Misuno from Poland won the Edgar Stene Prize, for her winning entry titled “My personal champion – supporting my everyday life with a rheumatic and musculoskeletal disease“. In 2016, I was delighted to win the Edgar Stene Prize for my essay on living life to the full. If you’re stuck for inspiration, take a look at some of the entries from previous years.

The competition is open to people 18 years and over who are living with one or more rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs). Take a look at the entry rules and the launch letter for more information.

The 2019 prize will be awarded to the winning essay on the topic:

My ideal employer – Work without barriers for people with RMDs”

People with RMDs are invited to write about their personal experiences. We all want to live life to the fullest and independently, with work forming an essential part of our life. Be it paid work, voluntary work or looking after the family and a household, this can be a challenge for people with RMDs. In your essay, talk about what an ideal employer should offer to you to make your work more accessible and manageable – or if there is already something working well, it would be good to share that experience too! Use this opportunity to think about measures, aids to help with work, attitudes by employers, and the support of family, friends, society or the organisation would work with. Your essay could be the blueprint of a world where people with RMDs can fulfil their dreams and ambitions!

Submitting your essay

Entries are accepted across Europe to member organisations of the EULAR Standing Committee of PARE. In the United Kingdom (UK), EULAR PARE’s national member organisation, the Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA) will appoint a judging panel to decide upon the one essay which will be submitted to EULAR on behalf of the UK.

If you’re from the UK, you should submit your completed essay to projects@arma.uk.net by Tuesday 11 December 2018. Each entry should not exceed two pages of A4, and should be be typed in Arial point 12 font, submitted as a Microsoft Word document, along with: i) An email address and/or contact telephone number of the author; ii) Information about the author (2-3 short paragraphs), including: age, home town, profession, family, hobbies, and how you learned about the Stene Prize and why you chose to participate; iii) Portrait picture of the author and five or more personal photographs to supplement the article with descriptions (which may be published should the essay be chosen for publication). Permission from the author of the essay to publish the essay as well as the accompanying pictures and personal information in EULAR publications will also be needed.

If you’re from another country in Europe, you can find out the liaison person with EULAR PARE for your country here.

Announcement of the winning entries

The overall Stene Prize winner, chosen by a EULAR jury, will be announced by Friday 15 March 2019.

Written by simonrstones

Simon R. Stones BSc (Hons) is an award-winning patient advocate, consultant and researcher from Manchester in the UK, who was the winner of the international WEGO Health Award for Patient Healthcare Collaborator in 2017. He is a passionate advocate and ambassador for people living with invisible illnesses, inspired and empowered by his own journey with juvenile arthritis, fibromyalgia, and inflammatory bowel disease since childhood. He is currently an Associate Fellow of the Royal Commonwealth Society, a trustee of Fibromyalgia Action UK and RAiISE, and board member of the European Network for Children with Arthritis (ENCA) and the European Network of Fibromyalgia Associations (ENFA).

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