Welcome to AWARE’s ‘Express Yourself’
A Children’s Mental Health Poetry Competition in collaboration with Joel M.

Why are we running this competition?

For many children, mental health is perhaps something they have never talked about before and we want that to change! To encourage children to start the conversation about mental health, we are launching ‘Express Yourself – A Children’s Mental Health Poetry Competition’ this February for Children’s Mental Health Week in partnership with the Community Foundation. The competition will allow pupils to express their thoughts and feelings about the past year through creative writing. It will encourage young people to think engagingly and creatively about their experiences through the COVID-19 pandemic. We hope that this activity will add value to all of our lives, and also allow teachers and parents to pause and check in on what is going on inside your mind.

Who is the face of the competition?

Joel M.

That’s right! The incredibly famous and well-known magician (hmmm most-followed Northern Irish account on TikTok thank you very much…) is going to be the face of this competition! Joel is a massive advocate of practising mindfulness and prioritising his mental health! Joel will be choosing the winning poem AND the winning school will be in for a personal visit from the star magician!

What are the prizes?

Prizes will include an AWARE Paws b mindfulness course for the winning school and runner up, an appearance on Joel’s social media account whilst he teaches the winning child a few of his incredible tricks, a performance from Joel in the winning school, AWARE x Joel M limited edition hoodies and many more! 

But that’s not all… this competition has a legacy… 

The winning poem, along with some resources from AWARE’s mental health experts, will be turned into a children’s mental health book and will be sent out to all partaking schools.  

Why only P6 & P7s?

AWARE is committed to responding to the need of support for mental health within our country, so we have now begun to roll out a new mindfulness course called ‘Paws b’ which teaches 7-11 year olds the tools they need to protect their minds as they navigate into their teenage years. In line with this age group, we have decided to open this competition to Primary 6 and Primary 7 pupils. 

For information on how to book this course for your school, please click here.

We can’t wait to read your awesome poems! 

Submissions are now closed! Thank you to everyone who entered. We will be in touch soon to announce the winners!

*This competition is open to Northern Ireland Primary school P6 & P7 pupils only*

*Submission lines will be open on the 1st of February 2021 and will close on the 26th of February. Please return to this page then to enter your school’s chosen poems. More information below*  

*This project has been supported by the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland through the Community Arts, Culture & Heritage Fund*

AWARE is the depression charity for Northern Ireland and the only charity working exclusively for those with depression and bipolar disorder.

Aware Defeat Depression, known as AWARE, Queen Street, Londonderry, Northern Ireland, BT48 7EQ, Company No: NI30447. Registered with the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland with charity registration number NIC100561


Tel: 028 9035 7820

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