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‘My Voice is ALIVE!’: Surrey student’s poem among 3 B.C. winners in Democracy & Me contest

Newton’s Keeratveer Bambrah won the Grade 5-8 category and got to visit Victoria
Award-winning young poet Keeratveer Bambrah flanked by Raj Chouhan, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, left, and Kate Ryan-Lloyd, Clerk of the Legislative Assembly, in Victoria on Wednesday, April 27. (Submitted photo)

Surrey student Keeratveer Bambrah has won a Democracy & Me contest prize with a poem she wrote.

The Grade 7-er at Newton’s Henry Bose Elementary was in Victoria Wednesday (April 27) as one of three winners of the contest, co-hosted by the Office of the Lieutenant Governor and Legislative Assembly of B.C.

Keeratveer won the Grade 5-8 category for her poem, which she calls “My Voice is ALIVE!”

The contest invited students to “reflect on the importance of community, civic engagement, and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and democracy.”

More than 140 entries were sent in by students from more than 50 public and independent schools across the province.

The other contest winners are Simon Wladichuk (Grade 2, Vancouver) and Maryam Abusamak (Grade 11, Richmond).

Judging was done by Janet Austin, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, along with Raj Chouhan, speaker of the Legislative Assembly, and Zoe Duhaime, editor, writer, illustrator and the City of Victoria’s 2015 youth poet laureate.

Austin said she was “greatly touched and inspired by their creative and thoughtful perspectives on an important and complex topic.”

Added Chouhan: “The range of styles and the different approaches to sharing one’s thoughts about democracy and our communities is inspiring. These young people have such a genuine desire to make their towns and cities a better place for everyone, and it really manifests itself in each of their poems.”

Contest details and the winning poems are posted to

Keeratveer Bambrah’s winning poem is posted below.

Tom Zillich

About the Author: Tom Zillich

I cover entertainment, sports and news stories for the Surrey Now-Leader, where I've worked for more than half of my 30-plus years in the newspaper business.
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