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The Dora Opoku Student Award

Awarded for: 
Self-development, training, research, improving local services
Award Amount: 
Maximum £1,000
Black or Brown student midwife on a UK NMC pre-registration course
Next Application Round: 
1 Dec 20241 Feb 2025
Next Awards Announced: 
May 2024

The Dora Opoku Student Award - Funding for Black and Brown students

2024 Applications are now closed

Dora Opoku

The Iolanthe Midwifery Trust recognises that Black and Brown midwifery students have an enormous range and depth of skills, wisdom and talent and that they go to make a huge contribution to maternity services in the UK. 

Black and Brown students are therefore invited to apply for the Iolanthe Dora Opoku Midwives Award for funding for attending study days, taking up elective placements or for projects to improve local services.

We want to see applications from a diverse ethnic range of students; we are committed to supporting you and wish to encourage you to apply for this award.

If you apply for this award you will also automatically be considered for an Iolanthe Student Award, to maximise your chance of being granted an award. 

The award is named after an inspirational midwife who was appointed an OBE for her services to midwifery education.  Find out more about Dora Opoku

About the Dora Opoku Student Award

  • Awarded for the first time in 2019
  • Worth up to £1,000
  • For Black and Brown pre-registration midwifery students on a UK course
  • Applications for the Dora Opoku Student Award are also automatically considered for an Iolanthe Student Award

Is your project eligible?

  • Elective placements.
  • Courses to gain skills or knowledge.
  • Travel and attendance at study days or conferences 
  • Small research project or to ideas to improve local maternity services

​​Travel and location of award work: 

The Iolanthe Midwifery Trust is once again funding projects involving international travel (ceased during Covid-19). However applicants should be aware of the following stipulations:

  • Priority will be given to projects taking place in the four nations of the UK; student midwives are encouraged to seek elective placements in a part of the UK that presents a contrast to (or builds upon) their prior experience, for example in urban areas, rural areas or within specific communities.

  • We do not fund placements with commercial/for-profit travel organisations such as ‘Work the World’.

  • For more detail about what Trustees would be looking for in applications involving overseas travel, please download the Application Guidance above.

See What do we fund? for more information.

Applications are made online. Please read the Application Guidance (link above or see our general video guidance ) and our Privacy Policy carefully before applying.

Watch Trisania Bailey, our 2019 Dora Opoku Award winner, speak at the Awards Ceremony (please note that overseas elective placements will not be funded this year).

Previous winners


In 2023 a Dora Opoku Student Award was not made; two Dora Opoku Midwives Awards were instead given


Jacana Bresson, a student at King's College London, who will fund Romanian language antenatal education in partnership with her placement hospital, Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Trust.


Rio Cole, a student at the University of Hertfordshire, to attend a Breastfeeding London course.


Gloria Owolabi-Agbongbon, studying at Edinburgh Napier University, who travelled to Mexico for her 3rd year elective midwifery placement.


Trisania Bailey, studying at the University of Southampton, who undertook a midwifery elective placement in Ghana.