A children’s journalism competition from The Week Junior and Twinkl challenged readers aged 7-11 to research and write their own news stories. There were plenty of brilliant entries, and the judges had a hard time picking a winner. In the end, it was our own Amaara Sankar, from Eaton House The Manor Girls’ School, who took the first prize. She won for an inspirational story entitled ‘The Diamond.’
Table of contents:
- The children’s journalism competition essay was based on an interview
- The story evoked ‘vivid’ descriptions of Carmel’s life
- Prize-winning essay: ‘The Diamond Amongst Us’
- Further information
The children’s journalism competition essay was based on an interview
For this children’s journalism competition essay, Amaara interviewed Carmel Crawford, and she told how this ‘extraordinary lady’ came to live in her neighbourhood. In clear prose, she told a story about Carmel Crawford and a generation of people like her. These were the people who came to the UK from the Caribbean islands. ‘She was such a wonderful woman to interview,’ said Amaara. ‘One of the words that describe her is ‘trustworthy’ – she is was truly trustworthy and believable.’
The story evoked ‘vivid’ descriptions of Carmel’s life
This children’s journalism competition drew many entries, and it took something special to stand out. The Week Junior features editor Ben Isaacs said, ‘Amaara’s descriptions of events from Carmel’s life were vivid. I found myself shivering at the thought of adjusting to cold British winters. Amaara clearly showed interest in Carmel’s life, and this enthusiasm drew me in.”
Mr Oliver Snowball, Headmaster of Eaton House Girls’ School, says he is ‘So proud of Amaara’s achievement,’ and adds, ‘Please read this wonderful story below.’
Prize-winning essay: ‘The Diamond Amongst Us’
An inspiring life story of fortitude, perseverance and love, by Amaara Sankar
The coronavirus pandemic has hopefully motivated us to explore more of our local neighbourhood. It was on one such journey that our reporter came across a jewel right on her doorstep. This is the story of an extraordinary lady whose life is bursting with memories.
Carmel was born in Jamaica in 1936
Carmel Crawford was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1936. She grew up in a church community on this sunny island in the Caribbean Sea. There she met and married her soulmate, Eustace, at the age of 18. They went on to have five devoted children.
Looking for better opportunities
In 1961, Carmel and her family moved to London for better opportunities.
Approximately 500,000 people are now living in the UK who arrived between 1948 and 1971 from Caribbean countries. They are referred to as the ‘Windrush Generation.’ They are named after the Empire Windrush ship that, in 1948, travelled across the Atlantic with 500 migrants from the Caribbean to help Britain recover from World War Two.
In 1969, the Crawfords moved to our street. “The area has changed immensely,” she told me wistfully. “There were meat and fish shops, a pharmacy with old-fashioned medicine bottles, about three post offices and even a cinema!” Now the local high street is bustling with bars and restaurants.
Carmel missed the caring Jamaican people
Carmel and her family assumed that they would live in England only for five years, but they had not expected the country to be cold. They missed the warm weather and the caring, helpful nature of the Jamaican people. All the money that they were saving up to return to Jamaica was used instead on heating, warm clothes and shelter from freezing winters. Eventually, Carmel and Eustace settled down and found permanent jobs. Carmel worked very hard as a seamstress, which she had learnt from her days in Jamaica. She worked for some top companies and fashion designer Catherine Walker. She met Diana, Princess of Wales, at Buckingham Palace in this role. It was only a few months before Princess Diana tragically died in a car accident.
Carmel and Eustace continued to dream
Unfortunately, after 66 years of marriage, Eustace passed away from cancer in 2020. Carmel described him as “the most loveable, understanding, kind, loyal, gentle human being”. When Eustace’s health became worse, they continued to dream. They reminded themselves of their happy memories by looking at old photo albums. Every wall in their house is covered with beautiful family photographs.
There is so much to learn from Carmel’s life
There is so much to learn from Carmel’s grace, humility and life experiences. One of the best things about friendship is that age difference doesn’t matter. Hopefully, you are now encouraged to find treasures in your area.
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