Young people from around the world are invited to send in entries for the 2013 the UNESCO/Goi Peace Foundation International Youth Essay contest. This annual essay contest is organized in an effort to harness the energy, imagination and initiative of the world’s youth in promoting a culture of peace and sustainable development. It also aims to inspire society to learn from the young minds and to think about how each of us can make a difference in the world.
The essay is jointly organized by The Goi Peace Foundation and UNESCO
Endorsed by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan
Japan Private High School Federation, Nikkei Inc., Tokyo Metropolitan Board of Education
As today’s young people are crucial for the shaping of our future, it is imperative that they are enabled to develop to their full potential. UNESCO’s objective is to help empower young people, reaching out to them, responding to their expectations and ideas, and fostering useful and long-lasting skills.
Theme: “The Power of Culture to Create a Better Future”. Every part of the world has its own culture. Culture includes the arts, traditions and customs of a country or region, as well as the wisdom, values, lifestyles and trends of the people living there. In order to build a peaceful world, we need to acknowledge and respect each other’s cultures. What aspects of the culture in your country or region do you take pride in? How can youth make the most of them to create a better future?

  • Essays may be submitted by anyone up to 25 years old (as of June 30, 2013) in one of the following age categories:
    a) Children (ages up to 14) b) Youth (ages 15 – 25)
  • Essays must be 800 words or less in English, French, Spanish or German; or 1600 characters or less in Japanese, typed or printed.
  • Essays must have a cover page indicating
    (1) category (Children or Youth) (2) essay title (3) your name (4) address (5) phone number (6) e-mail (7) nationality (8) age as of June 30, 2013 (9) gender (10) school name (if applicable) (11) word count.

    • Teachers and youth directors may submit a collection of essays from their class or group. Please enclose a list of participants’ names and the name and contact information of the submitting teacher or director.
      * Entries missing any of the above information will not be considered.
  • Entries may be submitted by postal mail or online.
     IMPORTANT: To send your essay online, you must go to the online registration page at and follow the required steps.
  • Essays must be original and unpublished.
  • Essays must be written by one person. Co-authored essays are not accepted
  • Copyright of the essays entered will be assigned to the organizers

First prize: Certificate and prize of 100,000 Yen (approx. US$1,300) for one entrant. 1st prize winners will be invited to the award ceremony in Tokyo, Japan scheduled for November 2013. (Travel expenses will be covered by the organizers.)
Second prize: Certificate and prize of 50,000 Yen (approx. US$650) for two entrants.
Third prize: Certificate and gift for five entrants
Honourable Mention: certificate and gift for 25 entrants.
All prize winners will be announced in November 2013 on the Goi Peace Foundation web site and the UNESCO web site. Certificates and gifts will be mailed to the winners in December.
How to Enter
You can either send your entry by post or upload it online. If you want to post it, send it to:
International Essay Contest
c/o The Goi Peace Foundation
1-4-5 Hirakawacho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-0093 Japan
You can submit it online through the link below.
Deadline: June 30, 2013
If you have any questions, please email: [email protected]
For more information, and to apply, click here