The World Youth Movement for Democracy, a youth network of the World Movement for Democracy, is launching the Global Essay Contest. Fifteen semi-finalists (3 in each region: Asia, Central/Eastern Europe & Eurasia, Middle East & North Africa, Latin America & Caribbean, and Sub-Saharan Africa) will be announced on Human Rights Day, December 10, and will have their essays published on the WYMD Web site. Two global winners will be invited to participate in the upcoming Community of Democracies Ministerial Meeting in Vilnius, Lithuania, in July 2011.
Democracy has been practiced in different ways and in different contexts. WYMD believes there are core universal democratic values and aspirations that we all share, which transcend our differences, even though we live in different cultures, speak different languages, and eat different food. The purpose of this essay contest is to highlight personal engagement in
democracy by promoting critical thinking about the role of young people in democracy and to
connect youth with broader democracy movements. The questions posed below for this essay
contest aim to challenge youth to write about their perspectives on democracy and their
understanding of democracy activism, particularly their own.
Essays are required to address one or more of the following questions:
- In what ways have young people contributed to democratic participation in your community? Highlighting some of the strategies and tools they have used, what difference have theirefforts made?
- New media and social networking are increasingly becoming popular tools for communityorganizing. In what ways have you and/or your organization been using new media fordemocracy promotion? How effective has it been and what challenges have you faced inusing these tools?
- What practices, do you think exemplify human rights activist protection or violation in yourcountry that is not openly recognized? What do you think are the justifications for this andhow can it be either replicated, in the case of a good example or stopped, in the case of abad example?
- What new factors can youth activists bring to longstanding human rights issues in yourcountry? How have these issues been addressed in the past?
The Two Global winners will be announced and provided with a sponsorship to cover travel
and othere expenses related to their participation in the Community of Democracies Ministerial
Meeting in Vilnius, Lithuania, in July 2011.
The 15 Semi-Finalists (3 from each region) will be announced and their essays will be posted
on the World Youth Movement for Democracy Web site.
Please submit your essay by World Youth Day for Democracy, 18 October 2010, via email
attachment as a Word document. The format must have 1’’ margins, double spaced, Times New
Roman font, and size 12 font. Please make sure to clearly designate, in the body of your email,
your full name, age, gender, physical address, and phone number, to the relevant regional email
address listed below. Do not enter your name or other details on your actual essay. Essays can
be submitted in Arabic, English, French, Russian, or Spanish, and the essay must be no more
than 2,000 words. Authors must be no younger than 18 and no older than 30 years old before
* Essays must be based on your own personal experiences and must be your own original work.
Please do not use outside sources without citing properly.
. Asia: [email protected]
. Central and Eastern Europe & Eurasia: [email protected]
. Middle East & North Africa: [email protected]
. Latin America & Caribbean: [email protected]
. Sub-Saharan Africa: [email protected]
August 12, 2010 – Launch of the Essay Contest
October 18, 2010 – Deadline for the essay submission
December 10, 2010 – Announcement of 15 Semi-finalists
January 2011 – Semi-finalist essays posted on WYMD Web site
February 2011 – Announcement of 2 Global Winners
July 2011 – Global winners attend Community of Democracy Ministerial Meeting
The submitted essays will be reviewed by regional committees each of which will determine three
regional semi-finalists. The semi-finalists will be announced on Human Rights Day (December
10). If needed the each of the regional committees will also translate 3 semi-finalist essays into
English to post on the World Youth Movement for Democracy Website.
Essays will be evaluated based on: Composition; Clarity; Creativity; and Practicality.
Visit the official website for more information.