Over a year ago, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 as a pandemic. Since then, we have lived through lockdowns, curfews and a major disruption of our ‘normal’ lives. In India, a second wave proved to be far more challenging, also impacting the youth.
Many researchers have found a two-fold increase in anxiety and depression amongst teenagers and youth during this time. The loss of jobs, uncertainty over the future and COVID-19 related triggers, like the fear of losing a loved one, present complicated challenges.
As a platform for critical thinking and writing, Takhte and UNESCO are launching the third edition of the Pan India Online Essay Contest for Youth, called ‘Year 2 AC – After Coronavirus: A Future Imagined by Youth’. It focuses on children (aged 11–14 years) and youth (aged 15–24 years). The aim is for them to reflect on our current challenges and tell us how they envision a more resilient and better future for all.
For this year’s edition, the contest was launched on 7 June 2021 and remain open for two months. As in the past, entries will be received on a rolling basis, and UNESCO and Takhte will each week select the best two entries from the different categories, which will be published weekly on their websites and social media. Later in the year, the 100 winning essays will be published as a book.