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Environmental art competition invites schools to take part with the chance to win free beach trip

To mark Earth Day and to encourage more students to become active in protecting the planet, the competition invites children to create artwork addressing, ‘my role in protecting the environment’
Primary, secondary and special schools across the country are invited to take part in a national art competition, aimed at inspiring children to tackle the climate emergency and play their part in protecting the planet. Created by immersive storytelling organisation, Lyfta, the competition aims to connect students to environmental issues and inspire them to get involved.
In celebration of Earth Day on 22 April, the competition invites students aged three to 18 to explore an immersive real human story featuring a beachcomber artist activist, Rob Arnold, based in Cornwall who collects plastic waste and turns it into awareness raising art. After experiencing Rob’s story, they will get involved in creating their own artwork. The winning entry will be awarded a fully funded trip to a local beach for their class.
Making the world more sustainable and tackling climate change are some of the biggest challenges we face globally. Around 60 per cent of young people are extremely anxious about climate change and the impact it may have on their future.
Improving climate change education in schools is a key focus on the Government’s draft strategy for Sustainability and Climate Change, and so the competition seeks to empower students with the knowledge and skills to better understand complex themes such as sustainability and biodiversity.
As part of the competition, schools will be given access to the interactive human story with Rob sharing his real-life experiences collecting plastic waste on his local beach in Cornwall. Rob feels responsible for finding a solution so uses art as a way to raise awareness. Taking his story as inspiration, students will be asked to create their own artwork based on the theme, ‘my role in protecting the environment’.
Schools can enter the competition for students individually, in pairs, groups, or as a whole class. Entries can be submitted as photos or videos of a range of art forms including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture and poetry. The judges include Rob, who will be looking for original, creative artwork, alongside a written explanation of each student’s inspiration in response to the theme.
Serdar Ferit, co-founder and co-CEO at Lyfta, said: “The climate crisis has given us an enormous mountain to climb, so it is really heartening to see that so many children and young people around the world have been doing an incredible job of raising awareness and taking action to protect our planet. We are thrilled to launch our Earth Day competition and share a collection of real-life stories that will help to engage students with these complex issues on a human level. We believe that the stories will provoke and inspire some brilliant and creative work, which we very much look forward to seeing!”
Rob Arnold, activist and artist said:
“I am honoured to be taking part in Lyfta’s Earth Day art competition and sharing my story with  young people up and down the country. The competition is a wonderful opportunity for students to get creative and make a piece of art which reflects their feelings about protecting the environment, helping them to critically engage and realise the important role they play in safeguarding the planet.” 
The teaching resources for the competition are free for schools and can be used in lessons in the lead up to Earth Day (22 April) and beyond, with entries open now and closing on Friday 27 May.
To enter, schools must register for a free Lyfta account to access the ‘Beachcomber’ storyworld. Entries must then be sent via a submission form and both the judging and winner announcement will take place in early June. Full details and T&Cs can be found on the website: www.lyfta.com/earth-day-competition

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