Ashley Abalos. File Photo.
MANILA – An 11-year-old Filipina student bagged the bronze prize at the 2014 International Letter-Writing Competition for Young People organized by the Universal Postal Union (UPU), a specialized agency of the United Nations.
Ashley Nicole Abalos from PAREF-Woodrose School in Muntinlupa bagged the bronze prize for the contest.
An estimated 1.5 million young people joined the contest which had a theme - "Write a letter describing how music can touch lives".
Abalos' letter was made to a blind musician she heard at a public concert.
"Music is not music until it is shared," she wrote. "Through your music, you are able to open the eyes of many even if you yourself cannot see."
The international jury commented: "Written with great sincerity, this composition full of emotions and genuine reflections captured the magic of music to connect people."
Abalos is the granddaughter of Director General Sylvia Palanca-Quirino of the Carlos Palanca Foundation. She won first prize in the PHLPost national writing contest held last year.
"The winning of the Philippines through Ashley makes this an exciting time for us," said Postmaster General Josefina Dela Cruz.
The competition was created by the 1969 Tokyo Congress and officially launched in 1971. Since then, millions of young people all over the world, up to age 15, have participated in the competition at national and international levels. The UPU establishes a theme annually, with participating countries choosing an entry for the UPU international competition.
“The contest not only harnesses the skills of young people in letter-writing, but is a great way to make the youth aware of the significance of the postal sector, as being strengthened by the UPU and the re-engineering efforts of PHLPost,” added Dela Cruz.
The first prize winner is a 13-year-old from Bosnia and Herzegovina while the second prize winner is a 10-year-old from China. The winners will receive their prizes on October 9, the anniversary of UPU’s foundation to form part of World Post Day.