Twelve primary and secondary school pupils have emerged winners in the 4th edition of the Rising Star Writing Competition and Award (RSWCA) out of the 655 entries received by the organisers.
The competition organised by The Writers’ Corner in collaboration with Vuvuzela Communications Ltd, is meant to improve children’s creative and critical thinking while also developing their writing skills.
Addressing newsmen on the outcome of the competition, the Coordinator of RSWCA/Chief Executive Officer, Writers’ Corner, Mrs. Uche Udoji, said the entries were either poem or short stories exploring the theme: ‘’It’s Ok to Say No’’ with 200 word-limit for pupils in primary schools and 500-word limit for secondary school entries.
She said the competition has grown since it was flagged off on December 3rd, 2015, become popular since inception as more schools have joined, making the entries competitive because more children are writing and striving to put all the writing devices to better use.
Udoji observed that the sponsor, Greenlife Pharmaceutical has continued to reward the winners with mouth-watering prizes such as laptops, tablets, phones, television, printers, books and certificates.
She disclosed that the 12 winners took first, second and third positions in the secondary and primary categories of poetry and short stories while another 12 entries emerged honorary mentions.
According to her, the theme was thought out and intentional move to inspire the kids to have a voice as individuals of the society and stand up for their rights against issues pertaining to all forms of pressure and abuse.
Her words: ‘’Some of the popular trends as seen from the entries include but not limited to bullying, sexual related abuses, physical abuses, verbal and emotional abuses, drugs, alcohol, and peer pressure.
‘’Fifteen entries were disqualified in this 4th edition for various reasons such as: multiple entries, late entries after the deadline of Thursday, June 20th, submissions that were not original, submissions that reflected a vague understanding of the theme, entries with obvious adult assistance, submission with less than 200 words for primary categories and less than 500 words for secondary categories, irrespective of their choice of entries-poem or short story.’’
Udoji commended Greenlife Pharmaceuticals for working with RSWCA since inception to ensure the steady improvement of the literacy standards among schools in the country. She added that the award ceremony will hold on Wednesday, September 25 in Lagos.
In his remarks, the Executive Director of Greenlife Pharmaceuticals, Mr. Ebuka Chukwuka, pledged that it will continue to sponsor the competition to groom kids and improve the literacy rate in the country.
Chukwuka observed that the country need the competition, stressing ‘’we need this kind of competition to address the high rate of illiteracy’’ and lauded RSWCA for initiating the competition for school kids while hoping it will attract national appeal.
The Head of Human Resources and Public Relations, Mrs. Amaka Nwosisi said Greenlife Pharmaceutical is happy to identify with the competition, which will help develop the writing skills of school pupils.
‘’We hope public schools will come on board. Next year, we will expect schools from outside Lagos to participate in the competition,’’ Nwosisi stated.
In his contribution, the Sales and Marketing Manager, Mr. Derrick Osondu stressed that the competition is becoming popular among school kids and observed that in the few next years, it will produce creative writers.