DAR ES SALAAM, June 27, 2015 – Rather than shop around for a sophisticated illustration from a professional photographer for the cover of the upcoming Tanzania Country Economic Memorandum, the World Bank Tanzania team launched an art and drawing competition for children aged between seven and 15 whose art could don the cover of the report.
The art contest was a compliment to the government’s priority to put critical foundations in place for industry growth and job creation under the Big Results Now initiative, said Philippe Dongier, World Bank country director for Tanzania, Burundi and Uganda.
“At the same time, more is to be done on the jobs agenda,” he said. “There are large numbers of youth entering the Tanzanian job market every year. The children of today will be job seekers tomorrow. We felt that an art contest for children would be a great way to involve them into this important debate and possibly get some interesting ideas on ways to increase employment opportunities.”
Announced in the local newspapers and on the World Bank’s website for Tanzania, the four-week contest ran from March 17 to April 18, registering more than 150 entries. The winning entry came from Chanda Atulinda Lwansa, 13, a student in form one at Feza Girls Secondary School in Dar es Salaam.
"I love drawing and I keep myself busy with it all the time,” says Chanda. “Sometimes I’m inspired by what I feel or something I just saw, or I simply want to keep myself busy and I start drawing something. When I saw the advert in the newspaper, I immediately decided I would enter the contest and I feel so happy that I did!”
Her work, which will be featured on the cover of the report, depicts men and women engaged in different occupations as surgeons, pilots, chemists, business people, gardeners and teachers. “I feel that no Tanzanian should feel limited in their aspirations for good jobs and higher incomes,” she said.
Sakina Khuzema Adamali, 13, in the eighth grade at Aga Khan Mzizima Secondary School, made first runner-up in the competition. Her piece shows children living in below par conditions but with their dreams of attaining a degree certificate and a better life.
"The government can do more to help all children achieve those dreams as all Tanzanians deserve a better life with our basic needs and rights met," says Sakina, who aspires for a career in medicine.
The second runner-up is Ibrahim Habhi Redemptus Bugalama, 7, currently in the second grade at Nyakahoja Primary School in Mwanza, with aspirations to be President one day. His submission shows a technologically networked country – depicted in long yellow track running across the map of Tanzania – that is covered in big raindrops. These raindrops, he said, symbolize job opportunities for all as a result of all the connections.
As the winner of the contest, Chanda also gets to pocket Sh1 million and have her picture and bio featured on the inside cover page of the report. Sakina gets Sh650,000 as first runner-up; while Ibrahim gets Sh350,000. All three winners also receive a recognition certificate from the World Bank.
The Country Economic Memorandum, due to be launched in August, discusses Tanzania’s dilemma – a strong growth that has averaged 7% year-to-year over the past decade, but that has not been able to generate enough good employment opportunities. There are around 23 million citizens currently in the labor force, with this figure expected to double in the next 15 years.