2016 Universal Postal Union International Letter Writing Competition for Young People

Application Deadline: April 30th 2016

The UPU’s International Letter-Writing Competition aims to improve literacy through the art of letter-writing. Targeted at children and young people, the annual competition encourages participants to express their creativity and refine their language skills.

The theme selected for the 2016 competition is: “Write a letter to your 45-year-old self.”

This topic was chosen to mark the 45th edition of the international contest. Children around the world are warmly encouraged to give flight to their imagination , while writing a letter to themselves in the future.

  UPU view of the world tends to change as we grow older, with the risk that the older person forgets or abandons the concerns and dreams of their younger self. The past becomes another country whose language we no longer speak.

Young people and children under 15 make up a quarter of the world’s population, yet their voices are seldom heard. Perhaps this is because the 45-year-olds do not realise what important things they themselves once understood and how much of value young people have to say. In this year’s competition, young writers are given the opportunity to reach across their own generation divide into the future. An important message can be sent before the language of youth is lost.


  • The competition is open to participants up to the age of 15 years.
  • The UPU International Bureau does not accept compositions sent directly by schools, individuals or similar
  • 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 30 April 2016.

Each entry must be accompanied by the following documents:
a A completed entry form;
b The original letter in the following formats:
– a good-quality scan, in colour, of the handwritten original (if available) in PDF format; and
– as a Word document;
c A translation of the composition in English and/or French, as a Word document; and
d A good-quality photograph of the candidate:
– in JPEG format (300 dpi minimum); or
–as a print copy (please do not staple or glue the photo to any of the documents if sending by post)
  • The top winners will receive a special medal (gold for first prize, silver for second, and bronze for third) and a certificate, as well as other prizes to commemorate their win (such other prizes to be decided by the UPU).
  • The gold medallist may also be offered a trip to the UPU headquarters in Berne, Switzerland, or an alternative prize to be decided at the sole discretion of the UPU.
  • Writers awarded a special mention will also receive a certificate as well as other prizes (such other prizes to be decided by the UPU).

Download the Application Form

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the 2016 Universal Postal Union International Letter Writing Competition for Young People


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