A member of Budleigh Salterton Adventure Group has taken the first step towards becoming an internationally recognised artist by winning a local competition sponsored by Budleigh Salterton Lions Club.

The artwork by 12-year-old Thomas Franklin is among more than 600,000 entries submitted worldwide in the annual Lions International Peace Poster Contest. Lions Clubs International sponsors the programme to emphasise the importance of world peace to young people everywhere.

The winning posters could advance through the district, multiple district and eventually international levels of competition.  

One international grand prize winner and 23 merit award winners will be selected and will be recognized at a special awards ceremony at Lions Day with the United Nations.  

Exmouth Journal: Richard Allen with Thomas Franklin

Budleigh Salterton Lions Club president Richard Allen said: “Our Club will be cheering for the Budleigh winning poster if it advances in the competition, and we hope that their vision for Peace will ultimately be shared with others around the world."

Exmouth Journal: Adventure Group poster designer with her poster

The Lions Club also sponsored the Peace Poster competition at Mill Water School for children with complex, severe, profound and multiple learning disabilities. 

Exmouth Journal: Mill Water School pupils with Lion Richard AllenPupils in teacher Niki’s class, aged 11-13, took part in the contest, which was also a meaningful opportunity to progress their Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) learning. They watched videos about what peace means, discussed in class how peace makes them feel safe, and then created their own posters to convey what peace means personally to them.

Headteacher Sarah Pickering said: “This was a really positive activity which opened up conversations about what makes pupils feel safe, and also what they can do to help others feel safe. There were some really nice comments about kindness and friendship. Thank you to the Lions for including our pupils in this opportunity.”

The pupils from Mill Water School have been honoured for their participation in the competition by the Budleigh Salterton Lions Club with donations of vouchers which can be spent on art and craft materials of their choosing.

Richard Allen said he was moved and impressed by the expression and creativity of the pupils at Mill Water School. “It is obvious that these young people have wonderful ideas about what peace means to them. I’m so pleased that we were able to help provide them with the opportunity to share their visions.

"On behalf of myself and other members of the Club I would like to thank Georgia White at the School for taking the time to show us around Mill Water School, the teacher Niki for enabling the pupils to take part and of course the pupils themselves for sharing their amazing and inspirational pieces of art." 

For additional information about the Lions Clubs International Peace Poster Contest visit www.lionsclubs.org/peaceposter.