CABOT, Vt. — Late last year, the United Nations declared 2012 the International Year of Cooperatives. With the designation, it is the U.N.'s goal to draw attention to the importance of cooperatives, highlight the contributions they make to society and encourage participation and action. Cooperatives are unique enterprises that are owned and operated by the members they serve, organized under a set of principles that foster a culture of social responsibility that strives to make a difference in their communities. It is with that spirit that Cabot Creamery Cooperative, the farmer-family owned dairy cooperative based in Vermont and best known as the "Maker's of the World's Best Cheddar," is announcing a poetry contest for middle school students.
"The farmers of Cabot Creamery Cooperative want to reward those that give back to their communities – a pillar of the cooperative ideal," said Cabot Community & Education Program Manager, Marie Frohlich. "This poetry contest asks students in Grades 5-8 to express how they've worked alone, with their families, friends or in the classroom to give back in a special way. We want to know how working to change the lives of others has changed their own lives."
The poetry contest is co-sponsored by Potato Hill Poetry, a Massachusetts-based studio founded by Andrew Green, a former English teacher in the Vermont public school system. Andrew, through Potato Hill Poetry, seeks to ignite a passion for poetry in young people and schools around the country.
"Poetry and community service go hand in hand," says Andrew. "Each is a giving back to the world, an offering, a reaching out. Poetry, like volunteer or community work, requires attention to detail and selflessness. It's the self trying to connect with another, to make a difference. This contest offers middle-school students an opportunity to reflect on their own volunteer experience in a poem, to capture the essence of that experience by putting it into words. In community service, it's people working with other people to create something larger for the benefit of others. In poetry, it's thought and image, word and sound all working together to create a good poem."
Poems must be on the topic of giving back to the community, and participants can include students from Grades 5-8. Entries must be your own original, unpublished work. You may submit only one poem, no longer than 20 lines in length. Poems must be received by April 30, 2012. Winners will be chosen by June 1, 2012. Entry is free. Submissions will not be returned.
To be accepted, the author's name, grade level, school name and address, and teacher or adult sponsor's name, phone number and email must accompany all entries. Find out more at www.potatohill.com.
Entries, including the information mentioned above, can be mailed, faxed or e-mailed to:
Cabot Creamery Cooperative
Attn: Poetry Contest
One Home Farm Way
Montpelier, VT 05602
Grand Prize Winner: $250 plus inclusion on Cabot Butter Boxes
Second Place: $100
Three Finalists: $50
AND, all winning poems will be published on www.potatohill.com and www.cabotcheese.coop
ABOUT CABOT CREAMERY COOPERATIVE
Cabot Creamery Cooperative has been in continuous operation in Vermont since 1919, and we make a full line of cheeses, yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese, and butter. Best known as makers of "The World's Best Cheddar," Cabot is owned by 1200 dairy farm families located throughout New England and upstate New York. For additional information on Cabot Creamery, visit http://www.cabotcheese.coop
Source: Cabot Creamery Cooperative