May 21 2020

Las Niñas Alzan Sus Voces Desde Casa: Girls Raising Their Voices from Home


Our partners are always thinking of innovative ways to keep girls engaged and active, even now, considering they cannot meet with them in person. Fundación Bibliotec in Calí, Colombia, went the extra mile last month when they invited their club members to participate in a creative writing short story contest. G.L.O.W.-Bibliotec Partnership Coordinator, Alejandra Peláez Gutiérrez, tells us more:


Yuri Alexandra Castillo LitClub – Biblioteca Pública Francisco J Ruiz

Para nosotros como Bibliotec, crear esta iniciativa motivando a las niñas a escribir sus historias y ver desde otra perspectiva sus experiencias de vida, en su entorno social y familiar en esta época de cuarentena. Este concurso se trataba de crear un cuento acerca de sus experiencias en la cuarentena, máximo 2 hojas, y ellas debían de redactar ¿cómo han vivido esa experiencia única en la historia del mundo desde casa?


For us at Bibliotec, creating this initiative was meant to motivate girls to write their stories and see from another perspective their life experiences, around their social and family environments during this time of quarantine. The contest rules were for girls to write a story about their experiences in quarantine, maximum 2 pages, and respond to this prompt: What is life like at home during this unique time in the history of the world?


Esta actividad ha sido gran impacto social en colegios, comunidades y países ajenos a nuestro programa, debido a que se filtró la información de nuestro concurso, porque esta iniciativa solo fue creada para las niñas del programa LitClub Valle y Cauca en Colombia. Se postularon alrededor de 562 cuentos los cuales se clasificaron la mitad dentro de nuestro equipo de trabajo, teniendo en cuenta que recibimos de nuestras niñas 60 cuentos y el resto eran de niñas externas al programa, el equipo Bibliotec eligió para nuestros jurados 25 cuentos donde ellas clasificaron por cada categoría los dos mejores cuentos, de la siguiente manera:


This activity has had a great social impact in the schools, communities and countries outside of our program, due to the information of our story competition being shared throughout the internet; when it was originally intended only for club members of the LitClub Valle and LitClub Cauca. About 562 stories were submitted and half were judged within our team, taking into consideration that only we received 60 stories from our girls and the rest were from girls outside the program. The Bibliotec team chose a final round of 25 stories for the our judges. They were ranked the two best stories in each category, as follows:


Category A – ages 8-10:
1 st Place to Karen Sofia Herrera – LitClub Roldanillo
2st Place to Yuri Alexandra Castillo Batioja   – LitClub Francisco J Ruiz


Category B – ages 11-18:
1 st Place to Brandy Liceth Candelo – LitClub Florida Llanito
2st Place to Linda Julieth Carabalí – LitClub El Retiro


Other stories outside of the LitClub program:
1 st Place to Ana Sofia Villalobos – Cali
2st Place  toCatalina Gil – Ginebra Valle”



I was invited to be a judge for the final round of this contest. It was a great honor and such a pleasure for me to read the words of these incredible young women. Their extremely imaginative look at the world around them impressed me and reminded me that even when times are hard, we should also look to those special moments in life where our curiosity is sparked and we see the beauty in what we originally thought was ordinary. Please follow the link to read the winners’ stories – they are in Spanish – but even a quick run in Google Translate will give you an idea of the immense talent of these girls.

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