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The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition 2020

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The Royal Commonwealth Society (RCS) has announced the launch of The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition 2020. The 2020 competition is themed ‘Climate Action and the Commonwealth’.

Building upon the 2019 theme of ‘A Connected Commonwealth’, 2020 topics draw on the increasing youth movement across the Commonwealth and the ongoing climate crisis. Young people are called upon to consider their position and power in bringing about change, and how the Commonwealth can be used as a tool for positive action.

For 2020, we want to hear from all young people, regardless of age, education or region.  All stories are important and all voices matter.

Topics

SENIOR CATEGORY

Born between 1 July 2002 and 30 June 2006 (14-18 years of age)

  1. Imagine you are President of one of the Commonwealth’s 31 Small States and you have been invited to give a speech on Climate Change to other Commonwealth leaders, what will you say
  2. There is no Planet B: How will Climate Change affect you and your community?
  3. ‘We will never stop fighting for this planet’ – Greta Thunberg. How can young people make change happen?
  4. The destruction of the Oceans everyone’s concern.
JUNIOR CATEGORY

Born on or after 1 July 2006 (under 14 years of age)

  1. Imagine you are Planet Earth, what would you say to Humans?
  2. A Blue Commonwealth: it is not too late to save our oceans. True or False?
  3. In 2019, students in more than 100 countries walked out of school to protest climate change. How can young people get their voices heard and make a difference?
  4. My planet, my place.

The QCEC is open to all citizens and residents of the Commonwealth aged 18 and under and is open until 30 June 2020. All entrants receive a Certificate of Participation and one Winner and Runner-up from the Senior and Junior categories will win a trip to London for a week of educational and cultural events.

Terms and Conditions

Entries will be disqualified if they fail to meet any of the following requirements:

    1. The competition is open to nationals or residents of all Commonwealth countries and territories. This includes residents of the Maldives and Zimbabwe. Residents of non-Commonwealth countries whose entries are submitted through their local RCS branch are also eligible.
    2. Entrants must select a Senior or Junior topic depending on their age on 30th June 2020. Senior entrants must be born between 1 July 2002 and 30 June 2006 (14-18 years) and Junior entrants must be born after 1 July 2006 (under 14 years of age).
    3. The maximum word counts are 1,500 words for Senior entries and 750 words for Junior entries. These word limits apply to all topics and all formats (essay, poem, letter, etc). Exceeding the word count will result in automatic disqualification. References and foot notes are not included in the word count.
    4. Entries must be written in English.
    5. Only one entry per participant is allowed. Please carefully check and improve your writing before submitting the final copy, and also ensure that all supplementary information is filled in correctly (name, contact details, topic number, etc.)
    6. Plagiarism is not accepted in the competition. Every year a number of students are disqualified because they are suspected of plagiarism. Please see our guide to plagiarism before submitting.
    7. Final documents should not include the entrants personal details including name, age, school or country. This information should be inputted to the system upon entry.
    8. The final copy submitted for the competition must be the entrant’s own work, and cannot be excessively corrected or improved by another person. This does not rule out input or assistance from others but does exclude group entries.
    9. By entering the competition, you agree that your personal details including full name, gender, email, school and essay may be sent to your local RCS branch and any Essay Competition partners. See Clause 4.1.6 of the RCS’ Privacy Policy for more information. Please note: Winners and Runners-up of the pan-Commonwealth competition will have their full names, schools, essays and photographs displayed on the RCS website and social media channels.
    10. Essays can only be uploaded as a Microsoft Word document (.doc or .docx) or in PDF format (.pdf). The online platform does not accept Google Docs (.gdoc), Pages documents (.pages) or other word processor formats. Note: if we are unable to find or open your essay file (either through an incorrect format or upload error), your entry may not be counted in the competition.
    11. All entries must be written on and relevant to one of the supplied topics in the relevant age category.
    12. All online entries must be submitted before 5pm (GMT) on 30th June 2020; any offline entries must arrive at the RCS offices in London by 30th May 2020 or they will not be counted.
    13. All entrants retain the copyright rights that they have for the pieces they submit, but by entering The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition, each contestant consents to the use of his/her name, and/or pieces or parts thereof in any advertisements, educational materials, corpus research or media and publicity carried out or produced by the Royal Commonwealth Society and its local branches without further notice or compensation. The Royal Commonwealth Society can publish or decline to publish; use or decline to use, any submitted pieces at the Royal Commonwealth Society’s sole discretion.
    14. The RCS retains the right to change the prize of the competition if circumstances make this necessary.
    15. The RCS will only be able to publish on our website and in our literature content that is appropriate for a wide and diverse audience, in line with our own policies. Entrants are encouraged to consider this in relation to their use of language when entering the competition.

For more information, Visit the RCS website 

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Become a UN Volunteer

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Are you ready to become an international UN Volunteer?

You can contribute your time, skills and knowledge through volunteering with the UN. This is an opportunity to create a positive impact and be a significant force for achieving peace and development. Make a difference to the lives of many!

Requirements
  • The minimum requirements to serve as an international UN Volunteer are: 25 years old and older (no upper age limit); university degree or higher technical diploma;
  • At least two years of relevant work experience in a professional background; good working knowledge of English, Spanish or French;
  • Commitment to the values and principles of volunteerism; ability to work in a multicultural environment; willingness to work with people and local organizations;
  • Ability to adjust in difficult living conditions and sometimes remote locations; strong interpersonal and organizational skills
Conditions of Service
  • International UN Volunteer assignments generally run for six to 12 months, with the possibility of extending for one to two years.
  • Short-term assignments are also requested by our partners from time to time. International UN Volunteers are entitled to certain allowances.
  • Allowances are in no way to be understood as a compensation, reward or salary in exchange for the volunteer work.
  • The purpose of allowances for volunteers is to enable them to sustain a secure standard of living in their duty stations
Profiles in Demand

Profiles in high demand include development and project management (community development, environment, programme and project development, project management, monitoring and evaluation); Legal affairs (human rights, protection, resettlement, reintegration, repatriation, refugee status determination, child protection); Political science (civil affairs, political affairs); public information (reporting and external relations); engineering (civil engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering), health (general medicine, public health).

 The first step to volunteer abroad with the UN is to determine whether you meet the minimum requirements (see below). If this is the case, register your profile in our Global Talent Pool. Profiles from the Talent Pool are then matched with assignments offered by UN partner agencies. Approximately 2,000 assignments become available per year. Most assignments are filled through the Global Talent Pool without being advertised. 

Visit United Nation Volunteer website for more information

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2020 King Carl Gustaf Scholarship for Students Living in areas of Conflict

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The King Carl Gustaf Scholarship is aimed at students who live in unsafe and dangerous conditions in areas of conflict outside Europe. Scholarships will cover the cost of tuition, but not living expenses, for studies at Uppsala University Master’s programmes offered during the current admission round and commencing 31 August 2020.

Level of study: Master’s programmes           

Eligibility criteria:

  • Citizens of: Afghanistan, Cameroon, DR Congo, Egypt, India, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Mexico, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Turkey, Yemen.
  • Applicants must show why they are particularly vulnerable and therefore in need to belonging to the education environment at Uppsala University as well as having the academic talent required.
  • Students can only be awarded a King Carl Gustaf scholarship if a programme at Uppsala University is chosen as first priority.
  • You must have applied for the Master’s programme before the University Admissions deadline.
  • You must meet the entrance requirements for the programme you applied to and application fee and supporting documents must have been received before deadline to University Admissions. 
  • The programme must be delivered on campus. The scholarship is not available for distance learning programmes or programmes partially taught at other universities outside Sweden.

Documentation to send:

Application period: 16 January to 3 February 2020.

 

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