SWINDON communities will have the chance to shout even louder about their achievements thanks to a new partnership between the Adver and Facebook.

The latest addition to our news team, Elly Roberts, started her role as community reporter at Richmond House this week.

The opportunity arose thanks to a charitable donation from Facebook, which is funding around 80 such reporters through a £4.5m donation to the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ). The two-year Community News project involves regional publishers and aims to bring more diversity into newsrooms around the UK.

"I’m so excited to be joining the Swindon Advertiser," said Elly, 26. "It’s wonderful to be able to contribute to high-quality journalism, which is really needed in an era of fake news and information overload.

"It’s really important to me that the different communities in Swindon are listened to and represented in the newsroom, particularly those who don’t feel their voices are currently listened to. I can’t wait to get stuck in!"

"I couldn’t believe it when I was offered the job, I was so thrilled."

Elly is studying for an NCTJ diploma in journalism by distance learning and is due to complete the course this summer.

"Anyone who has studied the NCTJ diploma knows it’s intense, and doing it by distance learning whilst also working part-time was tough," she said.

"There were definitely times when I thought it would never come together and happen for me, so I’m chuffed to have this opportunity."

Newsquest Wiltshire editor Pete Gavan added: "This exciting new partnership with Facebook is fantastic for local newspapers and will really help us improve our links with hitherto underrepresented communities in Swindon.

"Elly's enthusiasm really impressed me and it's great to have her on board. She will make a fantastic addition to our news team."

Do you have a community story for Elly? Get in touch via 01793 501782 or elizabeth.roberts@newsquest.co.uk