What is a Churchill Fellowship?
A Churchill Fellowship is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to expand your professional and personal horizons and, crucially, make a difference to communities and professions across the UK.
The Fellowship was one of the best experiences of my life and even after five years, the connections, the people, the learning and the feelings I met and went through still influence me today. - Mark Walsh, policeman, 2013 Fellow
It begins with a travel grant for you to spend up to two months overseas, researching innovative practice on a topic of your choice. This is not an academic study, it’s a practical exploration of how things work in other countries, yielding global insights that can be brought back to the UK to influence change here.
On your return, we can support you with advice and further funding to spread your findings locally or nationally, perhaps to set up a pilot project or new organisation, and to meet key players in your topic area. We partner with key organisations in each of our project categories, to enhance the reach and impact of the Fellows’ work.
A Fellowship is for life, and you will be able to join useful networks of other Churchill Fellows in your topic or locality. Online you will have your own page on our website which can be used to promote your findings and activities (here’s a good example). And we will keep you updated on events and Fellows’ research.
Applicants come from all backgrounds, ages and levels of experience. No qualifications are required. You will need some knowledge of your topic area but you do not need to be a field leader. We are looking for dynamic individuals who are passionate about their project and can show how they will use it to make a difference in the UK.
Here are two examples of Churchill Fellows and the difference they have made:
Neil is a science teacher. He travelled to Estonia and Finland to study approaches to attainment in science education.
He has shared his findings widely, speaking at conferences and writing in national publications. He has received additional funding to take forward one of his recommendations around establishing better links between primary and secondary science education. Neil also took four of his pupils to a youth leadership summit in Washington DC, an opportunity resulting from friendships made during his Fellowship travels.
Zrinka is Chief Executive of Migrants Organise, an organisation supporting migrants and refugees in the UK. On her Fellowship, she learnt about techniques similar organisations in the USA had used to secure changes to immigration policy.
Afterwards, Zrinka began shifting the focus of Migrants Organise from community development to community organising, with an emphasis on social change and injustice. Subsequently, Migrants Organise launched a programme on migrant and refugee voter registration, resulting in 6,000 new voters being registered for the 2015 General Election.