On this edition of the Wales Young Peacemakers Awards, we had the privilege to celebrate it at the Llangollen International Musical Festival field. Also, this year had the opportunity to do it live after 2 years of the Awards being shared purely online.
The adjudicators have been inspired and delighted by the entries we have received – over 60 of them from individual young people, schools and community groups across Wales! So, we would like to thank all of those who participated and encourage them to continue pursuing their goals for a fairer, more peaceful and sustainable world.
The winners of the Young Peacemakers Awards 2022 are:
Young Peace Activist
- Urdd Gobaith Cymru
With its hundredth message, the Urdd has succeeded in reaching many thousands of young people in over 80 countries using over 100 languages. That is a feat in itself! But it is the content of the message that has secured success in this competition. Peace is not possible while people live under the threat of climate change and its effects. This message draws attention to the crisis and is sure to make a difference way beyond Wales’s borders. The pledges of young people to take action are inspiring. Fantastic work – a well-deserved first prize in the Young Activists category!
Young Peace Writer
- Thomas Tremain (primary)
Thomas’ story is presented creatively in the format of an illustrated book. It is well-written and imaginative – with a compelling message. By inviting the reader to imagine themselves facing the precarious and often devastating situations many of our planet’s animals face, Thomas encourages empathy and asks us to consider our behavior and its impact on others. The adjudicator especially liked his attention to detail and his hopeful look to the future. Well done, Thomas!
- Zinzi Sibanda (secondary)
An incredibly powerful piece of writing. Zinzi tackles the subject of racial equality and the struggle to achieve it – from Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream speech up until and including today. She makes clear that racism and structural prejudices are not confined to the distant past or to the modern-day US but are issued for us to tackle here in Wales. A heartfelt call to action. Many thanks, Zinzi!
Young Peace Artist
- Stebonheath Primary School (school)
A heartfelt plea for peace and solidarity with the people of Ukraine. The judge was impressed by the diversity of artistic expression evident in Stebonheath’s work – including poems, prayers, drawings, collages, and 3D creations, as well as a high degree of participation by all pupils in the school. Displays in the school and on the railings outside and the Peace Ambassadors’ film also ensure that their message will have a wider impact. A well-deserved winner of first prize in the school’s category of Young Peace Artists.
- Daisy Osborne Walsh (individual)
Daisy is clearly an artist adept in her field. She has created two strong films conveying impactful messages about gender equality. The judge particularly commended the film ‘Unsatisfactory Survival’ for its clear messages. A well-deserved winner of 1st prize of individual Young Peace Artist.
Young Climate Champion
- Kyra Siân Coaker
Kyra Sian Coaker is clearly a dedicated climate champion. Congratulations to her for her dedication during the lockdown, organising action in her community and keeping climate change action going through tough times. Such commitment at such a young age is worth celebrating. A deserving winner of first prize in this category.
Young Global Citizen
- Solidarity Stories
The judge loved that the competition organised by the group had such good reach – meaning that the outcomes of their campaign will spread far and wide – a perfect example of global citizenship in action. The truly young person led! Deserving winners of first prize in this category.
Young Heritage Champion
- Clara Finkelstein
We felt that this year we wanted to celebrate the often unglamorous, unrecognized detailed work that means that peace projects have the research and the sources to be able to inspire future generations, and Clara’s work on the archives and collections at the Temple of Peace epitomizes this. Her work gave other students the opportunity to find new interests and gain new skills, and her commitment to the project meant that others can now pick up the work with a clear system in place. Well done Clara: thank you for your work to ensure that Wales’s peace heritage is accessible and available to inspire generations to come!
Young International Peacemaker
- Mahzari Kakar
An inspiring story of someone living their beliefs as an active global citizen then continuing to support citizenship here in Wales, through participating in the Urdd’s Message of Peace and goodwill.
Overall Winners: Peace Trophy
Since 2020 we have had the pleasure of being able to award an overall peace trophy to one or more young people to hold for a year. The trophy is in the form of a peace dove and was specially created for us by the famous Welsh sculptor David Peterson.
The decision as to who should receive the overall award is never an easy one. On consideration, however, we wanted to award the trophy to young people whom we felt had shown initiative and creativity and had been able to create the greatest impact on their local community and beyond. For this reason, we were splitting the trophy this year between Aberconwy Allies and Solidarity Stories. Both of these projects are shining examples of young people as peacemakers and global citizens, including the ability to inspire others, form partnerships and gain funding. We highly commend their work and congratulate them on their achievements.
This ceremony and indeed the Awards would not have been possible without hours of work and input from staff in schools and community groups across Wales and by children and young people themselves. Our main thanks go to them.
We thank the Llangollen International Musical Festival for hosting these Awards, which we hope will grow from strength to strength.
Many thanks to partners and donors who contributed towards prizes for the Awards this year – i.e.
- Griffin Independent Bookshop, Penarth
- Mr P and Mrs C Trevett, Bridgend Quakers
- Academi Heddwch Cymru
Lastly, many thanks to you, for reading this and supporting the work of many inspirational children and young people in Wales. We look forward to seeing you next year!