Fourth- and fifth-grade students at Morven Elementary School competed in an essay challenge in recognition of the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The theme of the essay challenge was “How I’m Living the Dream.”
The essay challenge was sponsored by the Morven Chapter of Las Amigas, Incorporated and HOLLA!, along with MES.
This contest was started to help the children develop their writing skills, and to learn more about King, in order to carry on the history.
More than 30 children participated in the writing workshop, which included films and information about King.
The challenge concluded on Dec. 14, 2017 and the winners were announced on Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018. The first-place winner was Johntasia Harrison; the first runner-up was Johnta Harrison II; and the second runner-up was Isaiah Hatcher. Honorable mentions went to Makhia Burch, Ambria Nivens, and Ta’myzia Simons.
As first place winner, Johntasia Harrison shared her essay at the countywide celebration of King’s birthday Jan. 15.
Johnnie Pettiford, member of the Morven Chapter, introduced the winners, and gave background on the contest.
“Our legacy lives on in our children,” Pettiford said. “They were hungry, and they were asking for the workshop to continue.
“I go to school with kids of other races,” Harrison said. “At my school, I have friends of different races, and we don’t allow skin color stop us from being friends.”
Harrison also said that she could not ask for a better group of friends.
“I have the freedom to sit anywhere on the school bus, in the cafeteria, at restaurants, and at any public place I go,” Harrison said, adding that it feels good to go somewhere and not see a sign that reads “No Colored Allowed.”
“Another way that I am living the dream is by practicing nonviolence, and not participating in bullying,” Harrison said. “A lot of times, people focus on Dr. King’s fight for racial equality, that they forget that he preached nonviolence against any man, regardless of race.”
Harrison finished by giving her last reason as to how she lives the dream of King.
“I have equal rights to be what I want to be,” Harrison said. “Knowing this gives me a lot of satisfaction. When I grow up, I want to be a nurse, and I feel I have the same opportunities as any other child going to school to be a nurse.”