OAK BROOK, IL USA, February 19, 2009 – Yennie Shyu, a 12-year-old girl from San Jose, California, USA, created this year’s grand prize winning poster in the annual Lions International Peace Poster Contest. Approximately 350,000 children ages 11, 12 and 13 in 70 countries around the world participated in this contest. Her poster was chosen for its originality, artistic merit and portrayal of this year’s contest theme, "Peace Begins With Me."
“In this age, technology and computers are very popular so I thought about combining technology and e-mail with spreading the message of peace and love,” said Shyu, who explains her poster depicts “little fingers typing big messages spreading love and peace worldwide.”
Shyu will be recognized for her accomplishment at Lions Day with the United Nations in New York City on March 13, where she will be presented with an award and US$2,500. Shyu’s parents and the president of the Milpitas Executive Lions Club, which sponsored the contest in her area, will accompany her to the award ceremony.
"I believe peace is what brings people together,” Shyu said. “With peace, people can live in harmony as one.”
“Our club is excited and proud to reach out to our community and the world to spread peace and hope,” said Joselito Abelardo, president of the Milpitas Executive Lions Club. “Yennie’s poster symbolizes a child’s hope for a peaceful existence and exemplifies the talent and intelligence of young people around the world."
Shyu enjoys drawing people, animals and scenery. In 2008, she was the grand prize winner of the Growing Up Asian American Art Contest. She speaks Chinese fluently and in addition to drawing, she enjoys listening to music, reading, writing, tennis and jogging.
Lions Clubs International President Al Brandel said, “Just like the Lions are everyday heroes through the community service they perform, these children too are everyday heroes in what they teach us about the importance of peace. These young people will grow up to be our world leaders and they will remember that the Lions helped them to consider the significance of international cooperation and peace.”
Lions created the Peace Poster Contest to foster a spirit of peace and international understanding in young people worldwide. In addition to the grand prize winner, 23 merit award winners have been announced. They are from Belgium, Brazil, China Hong Kong, Colombia, India (2), Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Russia, Taiwan, Uruguay and the United States (Indiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Virginia).
After being exhibited at the 92nd annual Lions Clubs International Convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota this July, the 24 winning Peace Posters will be shown throughout the year at children’s museums and various locations throughout the United States. The posters will also be featured on the Lions Clubs International Web site, www.lionsclubs.org, where you can learn more about the contest and send Peace Poster e-cards.
Lions Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organization with 1.35 million members in approximately 46,000 clubs in 206 countries and geographic areas around the world. Since 1917, Lions clubs have aided the blind and visually impaired and made a strong commitment to community service and serving youth throughout the world. For more information about Lions Clubs International, visit www.lionsclubs.org.