2017 International Letter-Writing Competition for Young People

The theme selected for the 2017 competition is: "Imagine you are an advisor to the new UN Secretary-General which world issue would you help him tackle first and how would you advise him to solve it?"

The topic was chosen to celebrate the election of the new UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, who will take office in 2017. As head of the intergovernmental organization, the UN Secretary-General plays a pivotal role as a spokesperson advocating for the world's most vulnerable people, including children. He will also have a central role in overseeing work on the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which strive to make the world a better place by the time today's children reach adulthood.

Adults often remark on the innocent minds of children and past letter-writing competitions have shown us that they are aware, curious and critical of the world around them. This year's edition of the ILWC encourages young people to speak their minds, using their imagination and views on the world to envision a positive change they could help the Secretary-General achieve as he begins his new job.

Participants may draw ideas from the SDGs if they wish. UNICEF has created a helpful SDG guide for children, which is available here.

All member countries are invited to participate by organizing a competition on the national level before sending their top composition to the UPU. Each country's best letter must be submitted to the International Bureau no later than 5 May 2017.