Plan Malawi overwhelmed with girls poetry: Chiwamba to chair judges’ panel

Plan Malawi is overwhelmed with the number of entries its ‘re-write her story’ poetry competition for girls has registered.

Malawian school girls

The competition, eligible to girls aged between 10 to 24, aimed at highlighting personal reflections on how girls are represented in digital and print media and demand for change.

“The number of entries has incredibly surpassed our expectations and it is exciting to capture the tendencies of unequal representation of girls in the media. You see, these are touching personal reflections that young girls are expressing poetically. The rewrite her story gives Plan International and other relevant stakeholders a discourse to deal with,” said Plan Malawi’s Communication and Campaigns Manager Rogers Siula.

Meanwhile, Plan has announced a panel of three judges to screen the entries and come up with nine winners, three in each category of the following age groups: 10 -14, 15-19, 20-24. Celebrated poet Robert Chiwamba will chair the judges’ panel alongside Chawanangwa Nyirenda and Murhenderhe Dula.

MK675, 000 worth of prizes are up for grabs in this poetry competition with the top winners in each category carting MK100, 000.

According to Plan, ‘rewrite her story’ seeks to demand the media, film makers and advertising agencies, among others, to stop the sexualisation and objectification of females.

“In our latest research into the world’s popular films, women and girls are rarely represented as leaders or when given leadership roles, they are far more likely than men to be portrayed as sex objects. This is not surprising considering that there is no female director among the top 56 grossing films globally in 2018. Only one in ten had a woman on the writing team.

“So basically, here in Malawi this poetry competition is an opening chapter to expose such inequalities and allow girls to speak about it through their poems. We cannot wait to learn more of the winning entries,” explained Siula.

Winners of this poetry competition are expected to perform at the Bingu International Convention Centre on 9th October when Plan International will champion the commemoration of the International Day of a Girl with a focus on the equal representation which is one of the key demands for #GirlsGetEqual global campaign.

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