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Mary Seacole Awards

These awards recognise and honour the name of Mary Seacole for her work in the Republic of Crimea.

As a nurse, midwife or health visitor, you can apply for a Mary Seacole Award to fund a project that aims to improve the health outcomes of people from black and minority ethnic communities. 

About the Mary Seacole Awards

Mary Seacole was a Jamaican/Scottish nurse and businesswoman, celebrated for her bravery in nursing soldiers during the Crimean War (1853–56). She was also admired for her use of Creole herbal remedies to relieve the symptoms of infectious illnesses such as cholera in Jamaica and Panama.

Until 2021 the Mary Seacole Leadership and Development Awards were coordinated and administered by the RCN and nurse, midwife or health visitor applicants could apply for a Mary Seacole Award to fund a project that aims to improve the health outcomes of people from black and minoritised ethnic communities. 

Award winners were provided with a unique opportunity to make a positive and lasting contribution to improved healthcare outcomes through their chosen project. The Awards have provided a platform to acquire and expand personal skills in communication, presentation, project management, research techniques and an opportunity to strategically influence Health Education England (HEE) and NHS England’s work around equality and diversity and health inequalities. In addition, Leadership awardees have gained confidence in leading an improvement or change programme with potential to achieve a high national profile; transitioning from operational to strategic thinkers.

In 2021 the programme has been refreshed and relaunched under the auspices of new providers: The Florence Nightingale Trust and The Mary Seacole Trust (further details below).

Meanwhile the original programme is drawing to a close, as the final set of awardees complete their projects in Autumn 2021. An evaluation is planned to assess the impact of the Mary Seacole Awards to date.

To hear experiences from winners of the 2019 awards please visit the Mary Seacole Awards website where you will be able to view a video.

How to Apply

Applications and Mary Seacole Awards are now administered by the new providers. The new partnership have provided this email inbox for all future enquiries:

We understand applications for this year closed in June, however they will be happy to advise you further.

NB: You may also be interested in the grants for education and academic training and if so we also recommend you to look further at RCN Foundation who offer some educational grants. For more information including eligibility criteria and details of how to apply please visit this webpage.

If you have further questions, then please email