kimono yukata youth

2017 Youth Essay Contest



Write an open letter to the president persuading him to continue reducing nuclear weapons, with the goal of eliminating them altogether.

On December 22, 2016, President Elect Donald Trump tweeted “The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability.”

Consider the following facts:

  • Hundreds of thousands of people perished from the U.S. bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of WWII.
  • According to Ploughshare Fund, nine countries in the world possess a total of 15,375 nuclear weapons. The United States and Russia account for 93 percent of them.
  • U.S. plans on spending $1 trillion on the nuclear weapons program over the next three decades.

We invite you to write a 300-500 word open letter to persuade the president to change his position by making the strongest case to not only avoid proliferation, but also eliminate current U.S. stockpiled nuclear weapons and lead the effort to eliminate all nuclear weapons worldwide.

Support your points with scientific, political, and historical data. The following websites have useful information:

All sources must be cited. Extra credit may be given for using additional sources.
Submit your entry online here or download a PDF entry form.

Prizes for each age group
1st Prize $200, 2nd Prize $100

Who can apply
This writing contest is open to two age groups: youth (age 14-17) and young adults (age 18-25) living in Sonoma County. Winning letters will also be published in the Sonoma County Peace Press. Prizes will be awarded at the Hiroshima Nagasaki Remembrance event which will be held on August 6, 2017 in Petaluma.


Submit your 300-500 word letter online here or mail filled out the form below with a typewritten submission  to Peace Crane Project c/o Peace and Justice Center 467 Sebastopol Ave, Santa Rosa, CA 95401

Evaluation criteria
A panel of judges will read the writings and evaluate them in terms of accurate information, clear writing, and persuasiveness. All sources must be cited. Recommended sources of information are listed on the front of this flyer.

April 30, 2017 for online entry. Hardcopy submissions must be postmarked by April 29, 2017.

This letter-writing contest is a project of Peace Crane Project, an organization that works to create a world free of nuclear weapons, where people can learn to live together in harmony and peace. For over 30 years we have commemorated the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945. We also install & maintain Peace Poles in Sonoma County. These are poles with plaques in various languages saying, ”MAY PEACE PREVAIL ON EARTH”. Our first pole was installed in Santa Rosa’s Courthouse Square, on the east side of the stage, in 2006. This project was made possible by a generous grant by People’s Life Fund, a project of Northern California War Tax Resistance. Also sponsored by Peace and Justice Center of Sonoma County.