British Virgin Islands

Monday, Jun 21, 2021

BVI to observe world poetry week, competition begins!

The BVI National Commission for UNESCO will be hosting a week of activities in March in observance of World Poetry Day.

Secretary General for the BVI National Commission for UNESCO, Dr. Allison Flax-Archer shared that activities including a poetry competition will be held under the theme, “Perspectives of Our Past: The Unsung Heroes” and is open for submission until World Poetry Day on Sunday, March 21.

Dr. Flax-Archer said that this year’s theme is a collaborative effort with the Department of Culture to invoke pride in the community towards persons who have paved the way for the future.

She said, “As poetry continues to bring our people together, it is hoped that persons will write about our heroes but also consider looking beyond the obvious and share perspectives about many of the unsung ones inclusive of our doctors, midwives and names of persons who schools have been named after, just to name a few.”

The Secretary General added, “It is expected that poets will use their cultural memory or do research to learn about our unsung heroes because poetry also lies at the heart of who we are as women and men, as a Territory and; we should all be held accountable to draw on the heritage of past generations because we are custodians of the British Virgin Islands, the world and for our children and grandchildren.”

The Poetry Competition guidelines are as follows:


Commencement Date: February 15

Completion Date: March 21 (World Poetry Day)

Theme: ‘Perspectives of Our Past: The Unsung Heroes’

Categories:​ Ages 5-7

Ages 8-10

Ages 11-13

Ages 14-17

Poems should be sent to: ​ aflax-archer@gov.vg

During the week, there will be school visitations and the culmination of the poetry competition at a Poetry Reading session to be held at the Sushi Bar on Wednesday, March 22. Other local poets including the Poet Laureate, Dr. Richard Georges will be featured.

The week of activities will conclude with a Writing Workshop organised in collaboration with the Department of Culture. For more information on the workshop contact the department by email, viculture@gov.vg.

UNESCO first adopted the poetry competition on March 21 as part of World Poetry Day during its 30th General Conference in Paris in 1999. The BVI National Commission observes the day annually by highlighting its importance.

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