Reggae princess Etana is doing her part to help with back-to-school woes, having launched an essay competition for young Jamaicans between 11-15 years old. The singer, who is a mother herself, is aiming to get children in the age group thinking about their future and overcoming their challenges.
Titled the ‘Be Strong, Be Free Essay Competition’, the contest was announced on Etana’s social media pages on Facebook and Twitter last week, and the singer has partnered with the Jamaica Observer and CVM TV to spread the word about the opportunity.
“I’ve been helping children in and around my community and who are somehow connected to me or reach out to me to go back to school for some time now. I thought this would be an even bigger way to give back to my fans and to help make it easier for parents to get their kids for school,” said Etana.
Entrants are asked to write a 500 essay on the challenges they face, whether in school, sports, at home or otherwise and how they plan to overcome those challenges and become more than average. 15 winners will be chosen and each will walk away with a $15,000 Kingston Bookshop voucher and a backpack filled with back-to-school necessities such as stationary, dictionaries and geometry sets. Winners will also walk away with an autographed copy of Etana’s second album, Free Expressions.
“I really want our kids to start thinking about how they are going to overcome the challenges they face and how those challenges will make them stronger and better, because they are our future and they do have challenges,” Etana remarked.
She also encouraged parents to get involved with their children and allow them to enter the competition.
The competition runs from July 20 to August 20, and entries are to be dropped off at the Jamaica Observer’s head office at 40-42 ½ Beechwood Avenue, care of ‘The Be Strong, Be Free Essay Competition’.