AMS Essay Award winners pose with Country Director, Etake and parents at award ceremony in Buea
By Andrew Nsoseka
Cameroon’s leader in sustainable cocoa development, Agroproduce Management Services, AMS, has offered scholarships to some deserving children of its cocoa farmers who emerged winners of AMS Essay Writing Contest.
The overall winner of the essay competition was 10-year-old Sophia Tabot Yayah from Quarter Four, Mutengene. She advised parents to train their children in the right way and dissuade them from engaging in activities that drive them towards violence, especially in schools. The essay competition was anchored on drivers of violence in school milieus.
The winners were handed prizes and scholarships on Saturday, December 4, in Buea in an occasion organised by AMS Ltd, and chaired by its Country Manager, Divine Etake. The best three students received cash prizes of FCFA 80,000, didactic materials and certificates. The overall winner received doubled of what the three finalists from the Southwest, Littoral, and Centre received in terms of didactic materials.
The essay competition was launched in August 2021, and the examination written in September. The exercise had over 418 students at the Form One level participating in an essay writing contest themed on “Causes of Violence in Our Secondary Schools”.
The students who, are children of cocoa farmers, were drawn from the Southwest Region, Obala, Goura, Nguila, Akonolinga, Bokito, and Nkondjock, all areas where AMS carries out its cocoa activities alongside its accredited farmers. Prizes for the essay competition were handed to the best 10 essays per unit. Nationwide, 70 students stood out as laureates. Of this number, only the best three in every unit were selected to attend the award and scholarship ceremony in Buea, alongside their parents or guardians.
This year’s AMS Essay Competition Award marked the third edition of the awards.
Speaking at the event, AMS Country Director lauded the laureates for standing out of the crowd, and distinguishing themselves. He said the awards are meant to encourage children to pursue education as the best option.
“AMS wants to support those who deserve it through hard work,” Divine Etake said, furthering that they have not limited the social responsibility to supporting students, but also to supporting community schools in areas they operate in. He also noted that his organisation has a policy of giving out school fee loans to its farmers at the beginning of every academic year, to ensure that its farmer’s children are in school undisturbed.
He urged those preventing the education of young children to “allow children to go to school; to protect and preserve them, because these are those who will be the backbone of this region tomorrow. Drawing them back today, is drawing our region back forever”.
He further urged essay competitors who did not win, not to be disturbed, but to rather be determined because there are several opportunities for them to excel. “To succeed in life, be a good student,” Etake told the students.
While presenting the award scheme, AMS Social Responsibility Officer, Clerance Forchu, said, from the results of the essay competition, it was discovered that education standards are falling. She regretted that many students performed poorly, indicating falling standards in education and literacy levels. She noted that the students revealed that exposure to social media, drugs, pornographic content and bad friends are main causes of violence in schools.