The Joy to Your World Essay Contest winners were announced Sunday evening at Searocks Dome ahead of a concert featuring Nikita and the Leacock Family Singers.
In this season of giving leading up to the event entitled Joy!, the essay competition formed part of a campaign to encourage young children to have empathy, to be generous and to help others.
Through their essays, the children were asked: “How are you bringing Joy to your World? How are you helping your family, neighbour, community? How can we all make Barbados better?”
Jordan Greig won top prize which included a $500 Scotiabank account, a tablet donated from Courts and a Chefette birthday party. In an excerpt from his essay, Jordan said”
“I love helping people in my family, neighbourhood and my community, volunteering to help in every activity. I pick up every piece of trash I can see. I believe that no one is perfect, but everyone can be the closest to perfect that they can be. I believe we’re all able to do our best. Barbados is a beautiful island but I think it could be more beautiful, if we all do our best and we all contribute. Be amazing and make a difference in Barbados and the WORLD.
In my family I help by setting the table, dressing my bed, and sometimes cooking. This helps to make my parents very happy , and I like to show them how I can be a responsible boy, and bring them joy. In my community, I am a cub scout and like to do activities to help people. I take part in school beach cleanups, and other events that help to recycle. I encourage everyone to pick up all trash you see. I enjoy recycling. I think it is important because if people didn’t recycle our landfill would keep on getting bigger, and the materials would be harmful to nature and the environment.
In my neighbourhood, I help by taking care of a toddler who is my next door neighbour. He really enjoys treating me like a big brother, and it makes him very happy when I play with him.
I am a happy hard-working child – spreading joy to the world. With a positive attitude, I believe I can change the world. I think my joyfulness will be helpful to everyone every day.”
Jordan’s father Julian Greig was ecstatic for his son’s win. “I thought we were coming to the event for Jordan to be recognized for his volunteerism and helpfulness but I didn’t realize about the great prizes. This is a great initiative to encourage children to be kind and give to others. And the entertainment was great!”
Other essay contest winners awarded at Joy! included Fazeena Bassalet, Chia Scantlebury and Zared Carrington.
Organizer Ebonnie Rowe said “I’m so inspired by the children’s commitment to being good citizens and positively impacting the lives of others. It’s also a testament to their parents and the good values they are being brought up with. These are the young people who will shape the future of the nation, and if they continue on this path we will be in very good hands.”
Headliner Nikita, fresh from performing in New York at the Barclay Centre, was in full support of the contest and show. “I was very moved when I heard of the great things these young children are doing and I was happy to perform and share the experience with my family. We need more wholesome family events like this.”
Joy! proved to be a fun family afternoon featuring free face painting, music, the Purity Photo Booth, Read for Life Children’s Circle, a drum circle, rally driver Neil Corbin and his race car the children can take photos in, vendors and more, ending with a Sunset Concert.
It was hosted by Caroline Reid and featured Honey Jam alums Ava-Marissa Lee, Chantal Griffith and Adrianna Mayers, Gospel group A Few Good Men opened for Nikita and the Leacock Family Singers.