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August 20, 2014, 4:24 pm

Submissions sought for Black history essay contest

It’s not too late to enter the Black History Month Annual Essay Contest and Black History Celebration sponsored by the Finley Advisory Council in Mount Airy.

With the theme “Fighting Black on Black Crime in our Neighborhoods” the competition will offer elementary to high school students an opportunity to express themselves and earn cash prizes for their award-winning submissions.

The submission deadline is Monday, Feb. 20. Essays will be presented at the Black History Month program to be held at Finley Playground, Upsal and Phil-Ellena streets on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 6 p.m. To obtain an entry form and guidelines visit Finley or call (215) 685-2890.

“The program will feature winning essays and performances by Jaleel McCoy from Freedom Theatre Arts and Dance Program,” said Gerry Sizemore of Mount Airy, who is co-coordinator of the program along with Margaret Turner and the council’s president Walter Marlin. “It will also feature the U. S. Postal Workers Choir. Come prepared to participate in the Black History Trivia Contest and win prizes.”

The essay topic for elementary school students is “how would you help fight crime and violence in your school and neighborhood?”

The middle-schoolers will write on the importance of witnessing a crime and the contradictions that exist under the label of being a snitch.

Secondary students would be challenged to tell how “Black on Black crime” interrupts one’s future promise and the promise of the victim.

All winners receive a framed certificate. For elementary students there is a $50 prize for the first place winner and a $25 prize for the second.

For middle school students, the prizes are $75 and $50, for the first and second place winners, respectively. High school students can earn a prize of $100 for first prize and $75 for second prize.

All entries must be typed and doubled space or printed legibly in black ink. The essays should be a maximum of 500 words for elementary students, 600 for middle school, and 1,000 words for high school. Of course, all entries must be the original work of the entrant.

The Finley Advisory Council is the volunteer organization that provides programming at the city-run facility.

In addition to the Black History Month essay competition and program, the council also hosts a Women’s History Month event in March, a Back to School Rally in September, and other programs throughout the year.