YouthLead Turning Point Contest for Young changemakers

YouthLead Turning Point Contest for Young Changemakers

Application deadline: 6th March, 2020

 

About YouthLead:

YouthLead.org is a platform for persons between the ages of 15 and 35. Who are making positive impacts in their communities by:

  1. Implementing your ideas
  2. Using the existing resources or integrating innovative approaches to solve problems
  3. Connecting people and ideas to advocate for and address the issues
  4. Making the world a better place by contributing their knowledge and skills to create solutions and improve people’s lives
  5. Looking to connect with like-minded people to learn, share, and amplify the impact.

It is the platform for young changemakers like you to provide you with opportunities to connect with like-minded networks of young people, mentors, and resources and events. While focused on youth from the Global South, the platform is available globally. The contest provides you with a unique platform to share your personal experience and creative voice. And, you could win a cash prize!

YouthLead invite written submissions, in the form of a personal essay or poem, that tell a powerful story about one’s important turning point you have experienced as a young changemaker. A turning point can be a moment in your life when you felt inspired, motivated, empowered, or enabled by a person, a place, or an event to begin working for change in your community. Community can be defined as a group of people you share common attitudes, interests, and goals with at the local, district, national, or global level, or in another way that makes sense to each author.

 

Application criteria:

The competition is open to all members of the public who are:

• Citizens of low-and middle-income countries (LMICs) as listed here;
• Aged 18-35 and
• Members of YouthLead with a member profile that is at least 80% complete. Becoming a member of YouthLead is easy and free. All Entrants must be successfully registered on YouthLead. As registration may take several days to process, all YouthLead.org registration requests must be submitted at least 4 business days prior to the end of the Entry Period to ensure timely approval for entering the contest.

Create your profile in English here or in Spanish here. (Please note: While we allow submission of personal essays and poems in French, we do not have a separate French registration or submission page).

 

Note:

  1. Only one poem or one essay should be submitted.
  2. Top two submissions in each language category (English, Spanish, and French) would be selected.
  3. USAID staff  and employees of YouthPower Learning Sponsors are not eligible to enter or win a prize.
  4. YouthPower Learning’s prime- and subcontractors are not eligible to enter or win a prize.
  5. Current YouthLead Ambassadors or YouthLead Ambassador Advisors are also not eligible to enter or win a prize.
  6. Contestants from countries or entities on this list cannot receive cash prizes.

 

Writing Formats

YouthLead invites you to write about one specific and important “turning point” in your life that led you to become a changemaker. A “turning point” can be inspired by a person, an event, or moment however large or small, that is personally important to you, and that motivates you to make a positive impact in your community.

Personal Essay

The goal of the personal essay is to tell your story in your own voice. A great personal essay helps the reader better understand your experience. In other words, why is the “turning point” you choose to write about important for you, and how does it inform, inspire, or motivate you today?  Use the personal essay as an opportunity to describe the turning point and the change you are currently trying to impact through your work.

Format & Length: Each submission must have a title and cannot be longer than 5,000 characters (including spaces). There is no minimum length.

Language: Essays can be written in English, Spanish, or French. No other languages will be accepted.

Poem

Poems can take any form you prefer (e.g., Haiku, free verse, ballad, etc.). As above, the goal is to use this format to express your voice and to describe the turning point that is personally important to you – how it informs, inspires, or motivates you today.

Format & Length: All poems must have a title and the poem cannot be longer than 5,000 characters (including spaces). There is no minimum length.

Language: Poems can be written in English, Spanish or French. No other languages will be accepted.

 

Other Submission Requirements

1. All written submissions must be the original work of the Entrant (that is, written by the Entrant him/herself), and relate to an activity that the Entrant is directly involved as a changemaker.

2. All entries must be submitted here. (Submissions in French or Spanish will also use this link. You can use “Select Language” in the upper right hand corner on your screen to translate the submission page to French or Spanish).

3. By entering the Turning Point Contest, Entrants agree and acknowledge that Making Cents International, the implementer of YouthPower Learning, is permitted to receive and review the Entrant’s registration data. All personal information will be used by YouthPower Learning in accordance with the Privacy Policy on YouthLead.org and the Turning Point Contest rules.

4. Written pieces must have been developed between February 13, 2019 and the Contest deadline of March 6, 2020. Entries that have been published on other platforms or prior publications will not be considered.

 

How to Enter

Step 1:  Register on YouthLead (go to Step 2 if you are already a member!)

All applicants must be registered on YouthLead.org before you can submit your contest application. YouthLead.org registration requests must be submitted at least 4 business days prior to the end of the Entry Period to ensure timely approval for entering the contest. Create your profile in English here or in Spanish here. All other users may use either link to create a profile.

Step 2: Log into YouthLead

Participating is easy! Go to the “Events” page, and click on “YouthLead Turning Point Contest for Young Changemakers” to begin your contest submission. (Submit here in English, Spanish or French). Entrants may submit a maximum of one entry (either one poem or one personal essay).

Step 3:  Enter Your Text

Either type the text in the respective submission field or copy and paste the text. You can use bolding, italics and underlining to format your text. Please note: the maximum length is 5,000 characters, inclusive of spaces.

Step 4: Select the Your Submission Category (Type) 

Select the appropriate content type – either Poem or Personal Essay.

Step 5: Select the Lanugage in which You Submit your Entry

Select either English, French or Spanish. No other languages will be accepted.

Step 6:  Accept the Terms and Conditions and Hit Submit.

 

 

Selection Process

1. Entries that do not meet the submission criteria for the contest and/or written formats will be excluded.

2. The YouthLead Turning Point Contest Selection Committee will rank the submissions separately by category – for personal essays and poems – and select the top six (6) contest winners for each category. The Prizes for each winner are outlined under “Contest Prizes” below.

3. No more than one prize may be awarded per Contestant.

4. Decisions of the Judging Panel are final and are not subject to appeal.

5. This is a skills-based contest and chance plays no part in the determination of the winners.

 

 

Third Party Releases

1. If the written submission contains any material or elements that are not owned by the Entrant and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, and/or if any persons appear in the written submission, the Entrant is responsible for obtaining, prior to submission, any and all releases and consents necessary. If any person appearing as a subject in any written submission is under the age of majority in their state/province/territory of residence the approval of a parent or legal guardian is required on each release.

 

 

Contest Prizes

Each language category will be judged separately. First and second place prizes will be awarded to the top two winners in each language category (English, Spanish and French). Third through sixth place in each language category will receive honorable mentions. All awardees will be featured on the YouthLead.org platform.

A. Poems:

English Submissions 
1. 1st Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize of $200 and poem featured on YouthLead.org.
2. 2nd Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize $100, and poem featured on YouthLead.org.
3. 3rd – 6th Place Honorable Mentions – poem featured on YouthLead.org.

Spanish Language Submissions 
1. 1st Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize of $200 and poem featured on YouthLead.org.
2. 2nd Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize $100, and featured on YouthLead.org.
3. 3rd – 6th Place Honorable Mentions – poem featured on YouthLead.org.

French Language Submissions 
1. 1st Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize of $200 and poem featured on YouthLead.org.
2. 2nd Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize $100, and poem featured on YouthLead.org.
3. 3rd – 6th Place Honorable Mentions – poem featured on YouthLead.org.

B. Personal Essay:

English Submissions 
1. 1st Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize of $200 and personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.
2. 2nd Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize $100, and personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.
3. 3rd – 6th Place Honorable Mentions – personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.

Spanish Language Submissions 
1. 1st Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize of $200 and personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.
2. 2nd Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize $100, and personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.
3. 3rd – 6th Place Honorable Mentions – personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.

French Language Submissions 
1. 1st Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize of $200 and personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.
2. 2nd Place Winner – a one-time monetary prize $100, and personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.
3. 3rd – 6th Place Honorable Mentions – personal essay featured on YouthLead.org.

C. If a winner does not respond within seven (7) days of notification, the Sponsor may, at its discretion, select one of the Honorable Mentions a Prize Winner.
D. Written submissions of Runners-Up will be displayed on the YouthLead.org Platform.
E. The Sponsor reserves the right to award fewer, none, or additional prizes.

 

Note: You need to log-in to the site in order to access the submission form.

 

Judging Criteria

The Selection Committee will evaluate the personal essays and poems based on the following criteria (“Judging Criteria”):

  • Voice & Power
  • Experience & Engagement
  • Inspiration
  • Impact

Voice & Power (30%)
Voice: Does the writer’s “voice” come through in the essay or poem? Does the reader have a better understanding of who the writer is as a person?
Power: Is the writing expressive? For example, does the writing capture emotion(s)

Experience & Engagement (20%) – Does the essay or poem help the reader to better understand or connect with the writers’ experience? Does it keep the reader engaged or wanting to find out more?

Inspire (25%) – Does the essay or poem inspire the reader to want to learn more or take action? Is the writing able to fully express the change that the turning point has triggered for the writer?

Impact (25%) – Does the essay or poem capture how the writer is “doing impactful work in their community” as a result of the turning point?
Sponsor

The Sponsor of the YouthLead Writing Contest (“Contest”) is YouthPower Learning, a project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by Making Cents International.

 

Application:

Begin your application by registering with this link

Proceed and enter the competition with this link

 

For more information about the competition, visit the official page of YouthLead:

Youthlead.org

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