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We believe in empowering children to share their stories.

That’s why in 2016 we teamed up with the Commissioner for Children to support its 2016 Young Creative Writers Awards.

Writers under 18 years old were invited to enter a poem or short story (up to 1000 words) inspired by the theme ‘Fairness and Respect’. They were judged in age groups from 5-8, 9-11, 12-14, and 15-17.

The award ceremony for winning writers took place at Government House in November 2016.

To help nurture their creative talent, we also facilitated a series of free writing workshops in the July school holidays.

These educational events saw established writers, university writing students, and tutors from the Story Island Project visit 10 LINC centres.

“It’s fabulous to be able to partner with the Commissioner and LINCs to send writers around the state to connect with kids in their school holidays,” Tasmanian Writers’ Centre Director Chris Gallagher said.

“We are excited to open up the opportunity for children to be creative during the break, with the added bonus being the chance to enter the awards,” she said.

Tutors included local talent Anne Morgan, Nicole Gill, Lian Tanner, Julie Hunt, Coral Tulloch, Sally Odgers, Christina Booth, and University of Tasmania writing students.

Workshops for each of the four age groups took place in Hobart, Glenorchy, Rosny, and Kingston LINCs, with two workshops at each centre in Queenstown, Smithton, Devonport, Ulverstone, Launceston, and Currie.

Judges included local writer and TWC Board member Danielle Wood, The Mercury editor Matt Deighton, Tasmania’s Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Robin Banks, and children’s author Angelica Banks.

“Everybody has rights,” Commissioner for Children Mark Morrissey said.

“This means that everybody, including children, should respect other people’s rights too.”