Emily Candell

Saanich student wins national essay contest

Jack Layton’s tough climb to political success as leader of the New Democrats inspired a Saanich student’s essay

Jack Layton’s tough climb to political success as leader of the New Democrats and sudden death just months after his party claimed the official opposition is a story known well by NDP supporters and critics alike.

It’s also the inspiration behind a Saanich student’s essay that earned national attention last week.

Emily Candell claimed first prize in A&E Network’s Lives that Make a Difference essay contest for her The Magic Beans of Love, Hope and Optimism, a piece that compares the life of Jack Layton to the fable of Jack and the Beanstalk.

The Grade 11 student at Pacific Christian School first became interested in Layton’s story in the lead up to last spring’s federal election.

“I noticed that all he was talking about was for the people,” said Candell, whose essay was selected from nearly 2,000 submissions nationwide. “All he cared about was for the country and helping everyone and it was really inspiring. … It made me realize how much of a difference one person can make, just by speaking out and showing how much they care.”

Candell sees Layton’s two failed elections prior to achieving political success similar to mythical Jack’s quest.

“His political career hadn’t started off well then he just climbed the beanstalk really quickly and was at the top,” she said.

The life of Layton was the most popular theme for young scribes in the contest’s 15th year – one marked by entries that ran the gamut of topics from the experience of immigrating to Canada to the influence of pop heartthrob Justin Bieber. Layton’s legacy was also the most resonant with judges. The grand prize winner, Mary Faheim of Mississauga, Ont. took the top prize with her letter addressed directly to Layton.

Candell, the only winner from Greater Victoria in either of the junior or senior categories, plans to see the $2,000 cash prize that accompanies the honour either help finance her education – or an educational trip to France.

Candell’s English teacher, Jennifer Stewart, will also receive $1,000 to be spent in her classroom.

The Lives that Make a Difference Contest is aimed at fostering literacy and education through providing teachers with an additional incentive in the classroom.

nnorth@saanichnews.com

 

 

Just Posted

Double lung transplant gives West Shore man second chance

Co-owner of West Shore Barber Shop grateful for every minute of the 16 years transplant has provided

Hallmark movie filming in Oak Bay

Shooting for ‘Sunshine’ continues into June across Greater Victoria

City says traffic pattern on Bay Street Bridge will stay as is until October

Commuters began facing long waits on Tuesday morning after the east-bound lane was closed

Home where Proctor murder took place removed from Langford’s Affordable Housing Program

Langford woman almost purchased home, decided against it after hearing history

PHOTOS: Victoria youth continue to gather for climate action

Local students participated in a global movement calling for climate action

VIDEO: 76th annual Swiftsure sets sail Saturday

Longstanding competition takes off from Victoria’s Inner Harbour May 25

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve investigating after sea lion found shot in the head

Animal is believed to have been killed somewhere between Ucluelet and Tofino

POLL: Were you satisfied with the Game of Thrones series finale?

Millions gathered in front of their televisions Sunday night to watch the… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of May 21

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. port workers set to strike on Monday in Vancouver

A strike at two container terminals would affect Canadian trade to Asia

Volunteers already rescuing fry from drying creekbeds around Cowichan Lake

It’s early but already salmon fry are being left high and dry

So, they found ‘Dave from Vancouver Island’

Dave Tryon, now 72 and living in North Delta, will reunite with long-ago travelling friends in Monterrey, Calif.

Scheer says it would take Conservatives five years to balance budget

Scheeraccused the Liberal government of spending $79.5 billion of previously unbudgeted funds

Most Read