(Backup)Webinar Series: Essay Contest Winners Forum

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the International Essay Contest for Youth People, we are excited to launch a webinar series inviting First Prize winners from the last 20 years to join in a conversation on timely societal topics.

Since participating in our Essay Contest, many of the winners are pursuing various paths in life and are continuing to make a difference in the world. Everyone is welcome to join the webinar and listen to the inspiring stories and wisdom of these young leaders.


Theme: Kindness – What is it anyway?

In alignment with this year’s essay contest theme, four previous contest winners from different continents will delve into the question based on their personal experiences and visions.



Mihai Burunciuc (Moldova)

Mihai Burunciuc is the Chief of International Cooperation and Exchange of Information Unit within the State Tax Service of the Republic of Moldova. Since 2014, he is also a university teaching professional at the Faculty of Economic Studies, Free International University of Moldova (ULIM). Mihai is a PhD student in International Economic Relations and holds a Masters’ Degree in Constitutional and Administrative Law as well as a Master’s Degree in International Economics and a Bachelor’s Degree in World Economy and International Economic Relations. Mihai was the Essay Contest First Prize winner (Children’s Category) in 2005.
His winning essay



Anne Elicano-Shields (The Philippines)

Anne’s essay “Amplifying Peace Across Borders” won the First Prize in the International Essay Contest for Young People (2007). She has gone on to be the World Bank’s Southeast Asia Online Lead, managing initiatives in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Singapore. From 2015-2018, Anne oversaw digital communications for the organization’s education portfolio (the largest financier of education globally). Anne has a Master’s degree in Journalism, with Distinction honors, from Sheffield University and was an Annenberg-Oxford University Media Institute Fellow (2014). Her articles have been published in the Guardian, BBC Radio Times, CNN Traveler, and more. She is based in London.
Her winning essay



Anjali Sarker (Bangladesh)

Anjali is a social innovation expert and development practitioner with seven years’ experience in leading projects that empower the underprivileged population, with a special focus on youth and women. Currently she is pursuing an MSc in Inequalities and Social Science in the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). She is an Atlantic Fellow at LSE, a Global Shaper at the World Economic Forum and is a New Voices Fellow at the Aspen Institute. She holds a bachelor’s in Business Administration from the Institute of Business Administration, University of Dhaka and a Diploma in Social Innovation from Lund University. Anjali was the Essay Contest First Prize winner (Youth Category) in 2012.
Her winning essay



Rogers Nziza Kimuli (Rwanda)

Rogers Nziza Kimuli is a Founder and Executive Director of Journey House Africa, a local NGO that is envisioned to build an inclusive environment for sustainable social welfare and economic empowerment of vulnerable communities in Rwanda and Africa with a special focus on peace building, trauma therapies, as well as unity and reconciliation. Roger is also the coordinator of the Sustainable Peace Building Program, both at JHA and local youth leadership. He heads and coordinates a children’s community gardening for peace program at the local community level. Rogers is a member of Ubuntu peace dialogue and the Human rights defenders in Rwanda. He is also a member of several dialogues of Never again Rwanda on a variety of humanitarian topics. Rogers was the Essay Contest First Prize Winner (Youth Category) in 2013.
His winning essay

Watch the webinar

Upcoming Programs

Theme: Reconciliation and Peacemaking in Post-conflict Societies

Theme: Towards Gender Equality – A Dream in the Making?

Theme: Faith as a Peacemaking Force

Theme: Rising from Ashes – Turning Painful Experiences into Opportunities to Service Community

Theme: The Concept of ‘Family’ in Today’s Postmodern Society

Theme: Youth Innovating for a Better World

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2019 Essay Contest