Manchester Academy’s Roukagia Afan joined young writers from across the country, when she was shortlisted for the Orwell Youth Prize.
Held in memory of the famous author of such literary classics as 1984 and Animal Farm, the annual awards recognise students' creativity and political writing, with the theme for this year’s event being ‘Identity,’ with those taking part asked to explore any form of identity important to them or whoever they chose to write about.
Shortlisted entrants were then invited to Pembroke College, Oxford University on Monday (26th June), for a special Celebration Day, taking part in a series of seminars, debates and talks, featuring guest writers and public figures.
As one of those on the shortlist, Roukagia, who is in Year 11, took part in a seminar with Adrian Tempany, a journalist who has written for the Guardian, Observer, Times and Financial Times, and who, as a Liverpool supporter, experienced first hand the tragic events of Hillsborough in 1989, leading him to write ‘And the Sun Shines Now: How Hillsborough and the Premier League Changed Britain.’
Roukagia also took part in a workshop with other students to create a political party with its own identity and manifesto, for which she was appointed Deputy Leader, debating against three other political parties, with the event chaired by Rick Edwards, author and broadcaster, who actively campaigns for youth engagement in politics and voting.
Manchester Academy Principal Andy Griffin added:
"We’re immensely proud of Roukagia, whose passion for writing earned her a place at this amazing event. It was also a unique opportunity to meet other students from across the country who share her love of writing, as well as hearing from those who have made prose their profession.”
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