Students wax poetic in competition

| 21/05/2019
CNS Local Life
(L-R) James Myles of the YSU, with Poetry Slam winners Colindra-Rodricka McGarvey-Sterling (third), Alia Smith (first) and Mohyndra Brown (second), and J.C. Connor of New Self-Help Community Foundation

(CNS Local Life): Alia Smith took home top honours in the recent Poetry Slam finals with her poem, “The Art of Getting By.” The Cayman International School student earned a $500 cheque which she will put toward her college fund. Coming in second and third, respectively, were Mohyndra Brown of Cayman Islands Further Education Centre, who received a $400 prize, and Colindra-Rodricka McGarvey-Sterling of Cayman Academy ($300).

The finals, in which 10 young people participated, were organised by the New Self-Help Community Foundation in partnership with the Youth Services Unit’s (YSU) YouthFlex radio show as a Department of Children and Family Services Child Month activity.

The event took place at Radio Cayman on Wednesday, 8 May and was the culmination of a contest which began in February, stated a government press release. The finalists performed self-penned poems, which ranged from the pressure placed on girls to confirm to societal norms to the proposed cruise-berthing facility.

In all, 70 contestants took part in the preliminary round, representing the University College of the Cayman Islands, Cayman Prep & High School, John Gray High School, Clifton Hunter High School, Triple C School and Grace Christian Academy, in addition to the schools fielding the eventual three winners.

 “The New Self-Help Community Foundation was created to inspire, educate and cultivate the creative imagination of young people to take responsibility for their future, and the quality of slam poetry entries truly reflects that mission,” said CEO J.C. Connor.

James Myles, acting head of the YSU, added, “The Youth Services Unit is happy to partner with New Self-Help Community Foundation to deliver this year’s Poetry Slam. This is another quality youth development initiative facilitated by grant funding from the Ministry of Youth.” 

Poems and performances were evaluated on content and delivery by a four-person panel. This year’s judges were recording artist and poet Patrick Lopez, former George Town Primary School Principal and Golden Apple award recipient Marie Martin, Proud of Them honouree Latoya Francis and award-winning actress Rita Estevanovich.

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Category: Education, Language, Local News, Poetry, Youth

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