The Jude Byrne Emerging Female Leader Award

The Jude Byrne Emerging Female Leader Award was developed by INHSU and INPUD (The International Network of People Who Use Drugs) in remembrance of Jude Byrne, a globally recognised, powerful advocate who fought to advance the health and human rights of people who use drugs.

Applications now open and close 5:00pm PDT 5th of April 2024


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  • The mentor program will be delivered by INPUD, tailored to the awardees, and co-created in partnership. The mentor program could cover many topic areas, such as: 


    • Academic research and writing
    • Orientation on the drug policy landscape
    • Policy analysis
    • Understanding policy processes
    • Coordinating community consultations
    • Developing advocacy positions
    • Writing for advocacy and influence
    • Drug user network development
    • Campaign development
    • Human Rights Mechanisms
    • Building effective partnerships


  • Alongside the mentor program, awardees will also receive a full scholarship to attend the INHSU 2024 conference which will take place from 8-11 October 2024 in Athens, Greece


Individuals are invited to put forward nominees for the Award via the online application system. Individuals can also self-nominate. The application includes:

  1. Response to eligibility criteria (see below)
  2. Response to selection criteria
  3. Statement summarising why the nominee deserves the Award
  4. 3–5-minute (max) video to support the application *
  5. Supporting statements from colleagues/others in the sector (optional)
  6. Resume of experience and expertise (optional)

* Those who are self-nominating will be asked to provide their video at the time of application. Those nominated by someone else, will be asked to provide a video at the time of confirming their acceptance of the nomination and will be given a period of one week to provide the video.

The video does not need to be professionally recorded – recording on a smartphone is sufficient. Applicants should speak directly to camera and can be seen and heard clearly.

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  • Awardees must be in their early – mid-career (regardless of how long they may have been involved in the sector), and interested in pursuing leadership positions or opportunities
  • Awardees must identify as female
  • Awardees must have lived/living experience of drug use
  • Awardees agree to attend the International Conference on Health and Hepatitis Care in Substance Users (INHSU 2022) from 8-11 October 2024 in Athens, Greece and give a 5-10-minute oral presentation
  • Awardees will receive free conference registration, travel to and from the conference and local travel allowance, accommodation for the duration of the conference, per diem/meal allowance, and complimentary INHSU membership for a year
  • Awardees agree to actively engage in INPUD mentorship program and to provide reporting on outcomes as required
  • Awardees grant permission for INHSU and INPUD to reproduce their application in part or in full for the purpose of marketing and promotion and to profile the awardee in organisation newsletters, social media, and other avenues
  • Awardee’s employers must be aware that the nominee is proposed for the award and agree to the terms and conditions described above, including the awardee’s attendance at the INHSU conference, their participation in mentorship activities and the nominee’s place of work being publicly promoted.


Jessica Morales is a 2023 award recipient. She is a dedicated activist and advocate based in Guatemala City who has been actively involved in various projects focused on human rights, drug policy, and the well-being of marginalised communities. She is currently working on a Global Fund project to improve the response to HIV.
A 2023 recipient, Kira Watson is based in Edinburgh, Scotland. She been involved in the harm reduction area for several years as a peer educator and activist. Currently employed by a harm reduction NGO in Scotland, Kira actively engages with individuals who use drugs, providing one-on-one support. She’s also a volunteer with the Nightlife Empowerment Network (NEWNet).


Yatie Jonet was a 2022 award recipient and is using the mentoring to build capacity and become self-equipped with knowledge of drug policy reform, to help create positive change in her home country of Malaysia.
Danielle Russell was a 2022 recipient and is receiving mentoring support to navigate the implementation of analytical drug testing services, owned by people who use drugs in her local community. .


  • If you are unable to submit an application via the online system, please contact [email protected] for a hard copy application form.
  • If you require support with the application (for example, if English is not your first language), please contact [email protected] A reminder that there are translations to French, Spanish and Russian available at the top of the page. 
  • After the applications close, they will be reviewed by a judging panel. Applications will be judged on merit, and response to the selection criteria. Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application approximately four (4) weeks after the closing date