The Minister of State for Overseas Development, Peter Power, T.D., has announced details of the fourth annual Our World Irish Aid Awards for primary school children. The awards engage children with the challenges facing developing countries and are open to primary schools across Ireland. Launching this year’s Awards, Minister Power said:
“I am delighted by the level of enthusiasm and dedication teachers and pupils have shown these awards. Over the last three years more than 22,000 children have participated. Through art, drama and film, these children have been introduced to the Millennium Development Goals and Ireland’s contribution to international efforts to reduce global poverty. These awards are shaping a new generation of global citizens.”
The Our World Irish Aid Awards encourage schools and teachers to create projects around global development with their pupils. 450 schools or over 13,000 children participated last year. Their projects included art, drama, essays, poetry, film and music. The closing date for this year’s awards is 5 December 2008. An awards ceremony for short-listed schools will be held in Dublin Castle on 10 February 2009.
Photographs of this launch will be circulated.
The shortlist of schools will be published in a special Our World Irish Aid Awards supplement in The Irish Times in early January. At the Dublin Castle ceremony one outstanding entry will receive the ‘Our World Irish Aid Award’, with ten to fifteen entries receiving the ‘Our World Irish Aid Award - Highly Commended’ prize. Entries consistently showing an understanding of the subject and a high level of creativity, will receive a specially commissioned ‘Our World Irish Aid Awards Plaque’.
The Awards introduce children to the eight Millennium Developmental Goals, which were agreed in September 2000 by Ireland and 188 other countries in the United Nations. They are:
- to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
- to achieve universal primary education
- to promote gender equality and empower women
- to reduce child mortality
- to improve maternal health
- to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
- to ensure environmental sustainability and
- to develop a global partnership for development.