Canon Young Champion of the Year Award (free to enter)

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Category Description

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We are looking for the next young person who has campaigned for a good cause around a social or environmental issue. If you’re passionate about supporting a local or global issue and are between 9-21 years old (at the point of the entry deadline: 29 April 2022), then you can submit an entry to this free-to-enter category, sponsored by Canon EMEA.

Judges will award winners from two different age groups** (under 16’s and under 21s) and will consider applications from more than one candidate per entry, e.g. where siblings, friends or groups have worked together to champion change.

To enter, you will need to submit up to 1000 supporting words and up to 6 images to tell your story; with a stronger emphasis on the story over the photos.  Take a look at these icons below… you’re probably supporting one of these Global Goals without even realising it… these are the United Nations Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs).

Whether it be mental health, cyber-bullying, well-being, environmental sustainability, education, charity activism, animal welfare, diversity & inclusion or any subject linked to the above SDGs, we want to hear how you are making people aware of the issue you are championing.

If you are under 18, an adult will need to submit the entry on your behalf, however, we want the story to be told as best as possible from the Young Champion themselves. So, if they are too young to write the entry, feel free to use as innovative ways to achieve this as possible (such as Q&As, short video and voice recordings, drawings etc). Submissions can be made by a parent, guardian, company or the charity / organisation in which they are championing / aligning to.

The judges will be looking for a heart-felt story, with supporting photos, showing how you have drawn attention to the issue you are championing. You may submit weblinks to published work or images, social media, or a video* to demonstrate the reach you have gained so far.

To qualify, you must still be actively championing the work associated with your submission and you must be below the age limits of 16 or 21 at the time of the entry deadline of 29 April 2022.

All finalist entries will receive four tickets to the 2022 virtual ceremony if outside the UK or two tickets to the physical ceremony in London. The finalist entries will each receive a Canon Zoemini Portable Colour Photo Printer and the two winning entries will each get a Canon EOS 250D DSLR camera, or equivalent.

For some ideas and inspiration of storytelling through pictures, see these examples from the 2019 Canon Young People Programme and the 2021 winners.

* Any video submitted should not exceed 60 seconds long (unless it supplied with a note to guide the judges on what section to watch). A supporting video is not a requirement and you will not be judged on the quality of the video, however, if a 3rd party has submitted your application, a video of yourself will help the judges with their evaluation.

** Judges reserve the right to change the age categories based on the number of entries received across the age groups.

Criteria & additional information

You are not being judged on the quality of photos or videos submitted – you will be judged on their ability to help tell your story.

Your submitted photos must support your 1000 words. Judges will be scoring higher for the strength of your initiative or campaign; with less emphasis on the photos themselves. (Scoring will be marked with 75% towards the words and 25% towards the photos).

Entrants must be between 9-21 years old on 29 April 2022. If you are under 18, an adult will need to submit the entry on your behalf.

If you submit any social media posts, please ensure you adhere to social media age restrictions.

Your photos do not need to have been taken on a Canon camera.

The photos can be of either the process of how the entrants have championed their chosen issue, or photos used in the process of championing their chosen issues.

Photos do not have to have been taken by the Young Champion. The Young Champion for example, can be a subject within the photo.

The Young Champion must not have already participated or enrolled in the Canon Young People Programme in any country. No relatives of Canon employees are eligible to enter.

Applications must be in English (if you wish to send an application in any other language, please email us prior to submission).

Due to carbon emissions, international flight travel will not be permitted to attend the physical ceremony in London, but attendance to the virtual ceremony which will be streamed live will be encouraged. However, due to the fair and transparent process of our judging panel, entrants will not be penalised by not attending. Prizes will be shipped to the entrant after the ceremony.

Are we eligible to enter?

Our awards programme is open to all organisations of any kind… companies large and small, charities, not-for-profits, social enterprises, NGOs, membership and accreditation organisations and government departments including local and county councils. We are all about rewarding sustainability practice – in all its forms. So if your organisation is making a difference, directly or indirectly to people and planet, you’re eligible.

We don’t just recognise businesses that are operating responsibly, or supporting / partnering with worthwhile causes. We also actively encourage entries from organisations that have been specifically set up or adapted to offer a product or service that tackles a social or environmental problem.

Our category descriptions and criteria have been written to guide entrants on what content should be detailed in their entries. However, we do not expect square pegs to fit in round holes… Some of your business activities or dedicated programmes might not fit entirely with any one specific category. In these cases, the descriptions and criteria are open to an element of interpretation and rest assured that our judges will still take into account entries that are strongly aligned with the overall context of the category.

If you have any concerns about the suitability of your entry, or would like to discuss your activities in more detail, we are here to help. Give Karen a call on 07813 718541 or email: