Young Voices Awards 2021

9 March 2021

The 2021 Young Voices Awards are now closed. To read about the winning entries go here.

2021 Young Voices Awards brought to you in conjunction with Australian Catholic University.

Do you have something you want to say to the world? Is there an issue you’re passionate about? Do you know an inspiring story you want to share? Here’s your chance to be heard.

The Australian Catholics Young Voices Awards are an opportunity for students in Catholic schools to have a voice – to use the media to make a difference in the world.

Whether it’s by crafting an inspiring article, capturing some profound images, or recording an informative podcast or video – we’re giving you the opportunity to get inspired and creative.


The Young Voices Awards have three sections:

  • Junior (Years 5 and 6)
  • Intermediate (Years 7 to 9)
  • Senior (Years 10 to 12).

Entries can be in written, photographic, podcast or video formats. 


In 2018, 15-year-old Greta Thunberg started protesting outside Swedish Parliament calling for governments to take action on climate change for the sake of future generations. Young people around the world have been inspired by her words and actions, launching a global movement.

Young people have the ability to dream of a better world, and the passion to inspire change. What difference might your voice make? 

Find an issue that inspires you, and get working on your entry for this year’s Young Voices Award.


Before you start

  1. What are you passionate about? Protecting the environment? Caring for the marginalised? Getting involved in your community? Sharing your culture? Celebrating your faith? Choose a topic that inspires you.

  2. How might you get other people thinking about your topic? Is there someone you can interview? Is there an inspiring story you can share? How can you be creative so you can capture people’s attention with something different?

  3. What format works best? Do you need to write an article, or could you present the topic through photographs? Could you record a podcast, or film a video? What will you have the most enjoyment doing?

Crafting a winning entry


Our judges will be looking for writing that engages readers from the outset, and presents a compelling story or argument around a particular issue. You could write a journalistic article, interviewing people and sharing their perspectives. You could write an informative article, sharing facts and figures in a creative way. You could write a personal reflection, sharing your own ideas and experiences. You could even write an imaginative piece, engaging people with the power of stories.

Required word length: No more than 400 words (Junior) or 600 words (Intermediate and Senior).


Our judges will be looking for powerful images that have an impact on how we see a particular issue. Think about what will have an impact on audiences: What do people need to see? What will best tell the story you want to tell? What might inspire people to change?

Requirements: Between two and four photos, with a 30 to 50 word caption.


Our judges will be looking for podcasts or videos that understand how these mediums can inspire and influence people. You could feature a one-to-one interview with someone sharing their story, or have a single presenter unpacking a topic in an interesting or imaginative way. Make sure you consider how you might use different audio or visual elements to keep the audience’s attention.

Requirements: Entries (audio or visual) should be no more than three minutes long (Junior) or five minutes long (Intermediate and Senior) and should be accompanied by a transcript

Entries close 5pm, Friday 28 May 2021.


Check out the Junior and Intermediate section winning entries from 2020 for more ideas.


Awards entries are now closed. Thanks to all students who entered this year's competition. Winners will be featured in our Spring edition.


Terms and conditions:

  • Entries must be the work of individual students – team entries are not accepted. Only one entry per student will be accepted. 
  • Entries can only be submitted electronically using the above submission forms. Please ensure all details, including teacher contact details, are supplied. Please follow the instructions and requirements on the entry forms. 
  • Print entries: Entries must not exceed 400 words for Junior section (Year 5 and 6) and 600 words for Intermediate section (Year 7, 8 and 9) and Senior Section (Year 10, 11 and 12). 
  • Photo entries: Entries should include between two and four photos, and one 30 to 50 word caption covering all the photos. 
  • Digital entries: Entries should be no more than three minutes long (Junior) or five minutes long (Intermediate and Senior), and should be accompanied by a transcript. 
  • All entries must have a unique, relevant title. 
  • Closing date for entries is 5pm Friday 28 May 2021. Entries arriving after this date will not be accepted. 
  • The decision of the judges is final. Winners will be notified via their school before the Spring 2021 edition goes to press.
  • Winning articles and images will be published in the Spring 2021 issue of the magazine. Digital entries will be posted on our website. All winning entries will need release forms from the parents/guardians of the students, as well as the subjects if they are under 18. Prizes will be forwarded to the school for distribution.

Good luck!

YVA 2021 Prize List



Pengiun Random House