Two Cameroonians among the seven winners of the United Nations Refugee Agency’s Youth with Art contest have received their prizes.
Bright Toh, 25, and Mukah Ispahani, 224, received their prizes at the weekend in Yaounde from the Country Representative of the UNHCR, Olivier Beer who congratulated them for their achievement.
Launched in April 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the contest encouraged young people aged 12-25 to reflect creatively on the theme: “everyone counts in the fight against the virus, including refugees.”
The UNHCR said t had received 2,000 submissions from 100 countries. One in four participants were themselves refugees or asylum-seekers.
Mukah Isphani, whose project was titled “Ray of Hope” said he was motivated by the outbreak of the COVID-19 as well as the situation in the North West and South West Regions.
His drawing presents persons who have been stricken and rendered refugees as a result of the situation and how the UNHCR is coming to their assistance. It is this assistance which he describes as a ray of hope for these refugees, a brighter future and tells them that they matter to the world.
On his part, Bright Toh, a visual artist who was selected as one of the winners in the cartoon category said his project is aimed at promoting peace, emphasizing human rights, protecting wildlife, human wellbeing and other philanthropic causes. According to him, the comic strip he presented, show that everyone should be protected from the COVID-19 and no one should be left behind. It shows that there is light at the end of the dark tunnel. This brings comfort and hope especially to those who have lost it all to a war and going through tough times during the pandemic, he said.