“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” ― Norman Vincent Peale
Congratulations to Diamond W., from Natchitoches, who won first place in the Louisiana J Rêve International global kid’s essay contest. Wilson received her award from Jacqueline Cofield, Founder of J Rêve International at the Boys & Girls Club of Natchitoches on Monday, July 27th, 2015 in an audience of her peers, counselors, coaches, family and Director of the Club, Eliza Behrendsem. When her mom exclaimed “the sky’s the limit,” Diamond responded “Mom, why the sky, when there are footprints on the moon?” Diamond’s peers and the Director of the Boys & Girls Club were very proud of her achievement.
This year’s theme is, “How to make school better,” and first place awards are being awarded in different cities globally. Diamond’s was the 5th global award. Awards have recently (starting April 2015-now) been given for the essay contest in Dubai, India, Senegal, and Rochester, NY. An ebook will later be created once 10 awards are given, wherein artists will illustrate the first place essays. Founder of J Rêve International Jacqueline Cofield recalls, “I won first place in the Wesley on East essay contest when I was her age and it really made me feel confident as a student. It feels so good to go full circle with that and recreate the same experience for a new generation. I make a point to congratulate the classmates, teachers, administrators and family for the award and I tell them that I travel far across the globe because encouraging kids’ creativity together as a community is worth it.”
Diamond’s mother told Cofield that the award “gives them all hope for a bright future”. Eliza Behrendsem, Director of The Boys & Girls Club of Natchitoches was very pleased, and asserted that this award is a great way to celebrate inspire the students. Writing is one of the first methods young people use to express their voice, and create. Congratulations Diamond!
“My students, at Robert Brown High School in Rochester, NY, had the opportunity to enter the J Rêve International Global Kid’s Essay Contest which had a theme of “How to make school better.” I gave it as class assignment because it fulfilled many needs for my students. One thing that is required of students today is purposeful writing. Unfortunately, trying to meet curriculum requirements doesn’t always give teachers opportunities to let students write about something they feel strongly about. J Reve International gave me and my students such an opportunity. My students feel passionately about their school and getting a good education and having a successful, fulfilled life and therefore the topic was truly engaging for them. I like to see my students engaged and to give them such an authentic opportunity to feel heard was wonderful. One of my students, Jennifer Torres, was a winner and us to have a full celebration acknowledging not just her success but to validate the efforts of all the students who participated. The entire experience fostered enthusiasm to write and an opportunity to practice their writing skills. The celebration brought inspirational speakers and motivated my students to see beyond perceived societal boundaries. I applaud J Reve International’s efforts to engage bringing these opportunities to students from all walks of life. Thank you.” Barbara Bukowski, English Teacher, Rochester, NY
All photos listed on this page © J Rêve International LLC