The Queen's Commonwealth Essay Competition was launched by HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, the Society’s inaugural Vice-Patron, during a visit to Ghana International School in Accra in the presence of more than one thousand school children.
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The theme for 2019 is A Connected Commonwealth. The event was the first launch outside of the UK in many years, in the presence of Dr Greg Munro, RCS Chief Executive; Dr. Mary Ashun, Principal of Ghana International School; Mr Tom Hartley, Deputy High Commissioner to Ghana; HRH The Duchess of Cornwall; Rebecca Akufo-Addo, First Lady of Ghana; Mr. Eric Kutortse, Chairman of First Sky Group and Serene Insurance; Edward Enninful Editor-In-Chief of British Vogue magazine and John Apea, RCS Regional Co-ordinator for Africa (pictured L-R above).
Building on the 2018 theme of Towards a Common Future, this year’s topics call upon young people to consider how they can work to use cultural, technological and environmental connections for positive change across the Commonwealth. It asks young people to consider the potential of the Commonwealth in strengthening the vast and varied links between citizens.
The Competition is an opportunity for all young Commonwealth citizens and residents, regardless of region, education or background, to share ideas, celebrate their story and have their voice heard - all whilst developing key skills. For 2019, we want to hear from more young people across the Commonwealth, all stories and voices are important.
The competition is open to all citizens and residents of the Commonwealth aged 18 and under and runs until 1 June 2019.
All entrants receive a Certificate of Participation and one Winner and Runner-up from the Senior and Junior categories will win a trip to London for a week of educational and cultural events. For more information about the competition, please see Terms and Conditions and Frequently Asked Questions.
Born between 2 June 2000 and 1 June 2005 (14-18 years of age)
- ‘You are the most optimistic, connected generation the world has ever known.’ HRH The Duke of Sussex. How can you use Commonwealth connections for positive change?
- Connected by the oceans; can we work together to protect the environment?
- ‘We are all now connected by the Internet’ – Stephen Hawking. What does the future hold for humankind?
- Family, Community, Nation, Commonwealth. What are the opportunities for shared, sustainable growth?
Born on or after 2 June 2005 (under 14 years of age)
- My cultural connections.
- An overseas visitor is coming to your town for the first time. How would you connect with them?
- A place I feel connected to.
- The Commonwealth connects people across borders - what can we learn from our neighbours?
Judges described entries to the competition in 2018 as ‘‘fantastically imaginative’, ‘hopeful’, ‘quite exceptional’ and ‘passionate’. We expect a similarly high calibre of writing for 2019.
History of the Essay Competition
The RCS has a rich history of nurturing the creative talents of young people around the Commonwealth. We endeavour to promote literacy, expression and creativity by celebrating excellence and imagination. Run by the RCS since 1883, this international schools’ writing contest is a highly regarded and popular international education project.
In 2015, the contest was renamed ‘The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition’, in honour of HM Queen Elizabeth II’s role as both Head of the Commonwealth and Patron of The Royal Commonwealth Society.
The Society is grateful for the support of Claned, sponsor of The Queen's Commonwealth Essay Competition. Claned is a cloud-based learning platform that maximizes learning outcomes by combining artificial intelligence, collaborative learning and world-class pedagogy based in Helsinki, Finland.