Youth Showcase

      Be inspired by the wonderful work of young people - their projects and contests in which they've been involved. And young people - click here to see how you could be sponsored to study abroad!

      Caring for our World - the perils of plastic

      Edd Moore's Damers First School Children

      Edd has created a multi-award winning series of eco initiatives in partnership with pupils, staff, parents and friends of Damers First School, Poundbury, Dorchester. Edd is a teacher and Eco Coordinator at the school and a member of Dorchester Poundbury Rotary Club.
      In December 2019, Damers First School won a national award for its environmental work and was crowned Surfers Against Sewage Plastic Free Schools’ Champion. The judges applauded the school for embedding sustainability work across the school curriculum as well as the children going to Westminster to meet Michael Gove to discuss the importance of an ‘all in’ system for the Deposit Recycle Scheme with support from the Campaign to Protect Rural England and Litter Free Dorset with the children appearing on CBBC Newsround. Numerous other prestigious awards have been won by the children, including overall winner of the prestigious Environmental Youth Award for 2019 at the Royal Bath and West of England Show for showing a whole school approach to environmental education. The judges said they were inspired by the innovation and infectious enthusiasm for the environment that ran right through the school.Edd initiated the school’s Refill Poundbury scheme to reduce single-use plastic in Dorchester and across Dorset. Members of the public can go into businesses with a refill sticker and refill their reusable bottle with free water. Damers Eco Ambassadors have written letters to over 300 businesses, 30 schools, nurseries, colleges, Dorset Council and 30 community groups asking for their support by giving up single use plastic and finding alternatives. 
      Edd has coordinated a number of ongoing recycling initiatives involving materials not collected by the Dorset Waste Partnership including biscuit and cake wrappers, plastic pet food pouches and packaging, plastic sweet and chocolate bar wrappers, pens, toothbrushes and printer refills. 
      In 2019 he was awarded Wessex FM’s Teacher of the Year award after being nominated by children and parents for the environmental work he has achieved at school and in the local community.

      Damers First School

      A wonderful example of how people can make a huge difference in the world is the work of Rotarian Edd Moore with the pupils of Damers First School. Winners of multiple awards recognising how they care for our world and their positive impact on society, they were featured in the Virtual Climate Summit for the whole of the UK. 
      Take a look at this montage of their work.

      Young People's Trust for the Environment

      Young People's Trust for the Environment is a charity set up to encourage young people's understanding of the environment. Founded back in 1982, it aims to give young people a real awareness of environmental issues such as climate change, pollution, deforestation and endangered flora & fauna.
      It also aims to provide balanced views to take into account the realities of the modern world. Young people need to know all of the facts in order to make their own decisions about how they want to shape their world for the future. Watch a video here to learn more about how these young people have been inspired to care for their world.

      Young Musician Competition

      Talented young people - vocalists or instrumentalists aged 11-17 - across the country are encouraged to enter Rotary's Young Musician annual competition, which starts at a local level with winners going forward to the national stage. See below for our local youngsters taking centre stage and sharing their musical talents, and watch the video.....


      2018 Regional final at Ottery St Mary Parish Church.


      Poppy being presented with her Runner Up Award at the 2018 Edinburgh National Final.


      2018 D1200 Final at Cheddar (with PDG Stewart Cursley)



      Poppy being presented with her Runner Up Award at the 2018 Edinburgh National Final.


      District Governer, Rory O'Donnell with Ellen Steward, winner of the Vocalist First Place at the D1200 Final at Cheddar, 2019.


      Rotary Youth Leadership Awards

      Do you have what it takes to become a dynamic leader and change yourself and the world?

      Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is an intensive leadership experience organised by Rotary clubs and districts where you develop your skills as a leader while having fun and making connections.
      What are the benefits?
      Connect with leaders in your community and around the world to:
      ● Build communication and problem-solving skills● Discover strategies for becoming a dynamic leader in your school or community● Learn from community leaders, inspirational speakers, and peer mentors● Unlock your potential to turn motivation into action● Have fun and form lasting friendships
      What’s involved?
      RYLA events are organised locally by Rotary clubs and districts for participants ages 14-30. Depending on community needs, RYLA may take the form of a one-day seminar, a three-day retreat, or a weeklong camp. Typically, events last 3-10 days and include presentations, activities, and workshops covering a variety of topics.
      Your community might host a RYLA event for secondary school students to hone their leadership potential, for university students to develop creative problem-solving strategies, or for young professionals to learn ethical business practices.
      How can I participate?
      RYLA participants are nominated by local Rotary clubs. Contact your local Rotary club to find out more about RYLA events in your area, and how to apply.

      The Young Photographer Competition

      The Young Photographer competition is part of a suite of competitions aimed at youngsters, with this one encouraging young people to:
      • Experiment with photography• Show interpretation of their chosen topic • Express their ideas through the medium of photography 
      Who can take part?
      The competition is open to children and young people including all schools and college communities, those that are home educated and any other young peoples’ community organisations.
      Showcasing 2020's winners
      The Rotary National Finals of Young Photographer took place last year with a theme of 'Through My Eyes' and via electronic submissions and desktop judging, three candidates supported by local clubs in District 1200 gained places. 
      Sophie Goggs, age 13, and Sam Mathias, age 10, were both sponsored by Brue Valley Rotary Club near Glastonbury, and were awarded 2nd and 3rd place respectively in their age groups, winning Olympus vouchers. A 3rd candidate, Emily Bunce, was sponsored by Frome, and won the contest outright. 
      Photography is such an important medium, affects how we view life and the world in general, and can capture one moment in time, an historic happening, or a mood. More of us than ever before take photos with the ease of using mobile phone cameras, whilst some continue to perfect their art using specialist equipment. Young Photographer is one of many competitions where Rotary is involved in developing skills of the future generation - in fact, in last year's competition, Sophie was the Junior National winner. Young people and schools are encouraged to enter each year - and also the Rotary contests for young film-maker, artist, writer and environmentalist.
      Any interested individuals and schools should contact their local Rotary Club and enter - it's more important than ever in these times for us all to explore our artistic sides!ent

      The horse's eye is the winning entry from Sophie Goggs, the raindrops on a leaf are from Sam Mathias, and the first of the manipulated images is the senior winner's one from Emily Bunce.


      Putting young people’s STEM skills to the test.

      What is a Rotary Technology Tournament?

      Rotary Technology Tournaments are a challenging and enjoyable way for young people to enrich their STEM learning (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).
      The teams of pupils, typically in groups of four, have to solve an interactive technology-based task and are required to design, develop and build a solution with the materials supplied.
      Tournaments culminate in the testing session when teams demonstrate their best solution to the task and can observe the efforts of competing teams.
      Stewards are on hand to guide the pupils throughout and offer a helping hand where necessary to ensure everyone gets the most from the experience. The tournament is judged by Rotary members and guests with backgrounds in engineering, technology and design.
      As STEM subjects continue to be a key part of the school curriculum, Rotary Technology Tournaments support not only academic learning, but teach skills such as teamwork, communication and timekeeping.

      Who can take part?

      Technology Tournaments are designed for secondary school pupils aged 11-16, with an advanced age level for 16 to 18-year olds.
      There are also Junior Technology Tournaments which Rotary delivers in partnership with the Rochester Bridge Trust, with simpler tasks designed specifically for 8 to 11-year-olds in primary and junior schools.
      Taking on a similar design, develop, build and test format, the Junior Technology Tournament is designed to be suitable for younger children and smaller educational settings and can take place across a whole day, two half days or four ‘twilight’ sessions of around one hour.
      All costs are paid by the organising Rotary clubs and there is no entry cost to school teams other than any potential transport to and from the event – although many events are held within the school environment.

      Paul Wooding

      Proud mum and son - caring for others, caring for the environment

      Wendy O'Carroll founded the charity Ups and Downs Southwest after the birth of her son Oliver in 1996. 

      Oliver's diagnosis of Down Syndrome had come as a complete surprise as did his need for open heart surgery at 3 months old, but left Wendy with a burning need to reach out and support families in a similar position with reassurance and hope. She stepped down from her role as Chief Executive Officer in July 2016 after 20 years in the charity sector supporting parents, children and young people, and professionals across the UK. An accomplished speaker, Wendy enjoys providing motivational and informative lectures and presentations to both large and small audiences. Wendy uses the story of Oliver's journey to emphasise the critical need for our society to learn how to enjoy and celebrate difference, and to help us all realise how a positive and enthusiastic attitude can change lives. Wendy has spoken at Westminster and is renowned for her straight talking and cheery optimistic disposition and her determination to instigate and encourage positive awareness in a way which audiences find both memorable and entertaining.
      Books, cards, etc by Oliver will be on sale on Oliver's website. Check out some of Oliver's landscape photography there too.
      Oliver Hellowell Photography: 

      Sadly, Wendy was unable to make a recording specifically for us. However she has kindly given us permission to show a talk she gave to some senior school pupils. Please don't be put off by it having been initially tailored to a different audience - her message is still a moving and powerful one. And you can also take a look at one of Oliver's appearances on The One Show - what a star!