The District is in the grips of a violence epidemic. With lives at risk, we need a comprehensive, “all-hands on deck” response from leaders across the District—and that includes the young people who see the impacts of this crisis up close.
That’s the idea behind the “Do the Write Thing Challenge,” a national essay contest that gives middle school students the chance to speak out about how violence affects their lives, and share their ideas about what we all must do to stop it. By elevating their thinking around how to end gun violence and create a safe city that supports their hopes and dreams, we can offer them new pathways to begin the healing process. In turn, when a student writes about how they are afraid to go to sleep because they hear gunshots that make them stay up all night, their words obligate us to stop, listen, and act.
Below are more details about the program, along with a link where youth can submit their essays online. All essayists—along with their principals, teachers, and family—will be invited to a recognition celebration at the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) in April 2021.
Final submissions are due on June 4, 2021 by 11:59 p.m.
Please join OAG in encouraging our youth to participate in the Do the Write Thing Challenge and help us elevate their ideas to end violence and make the District safer.
Click here to submit an essay for the "Do the Write Thing" Challenge.
National Contest Rules/Instructions
- 2020-2021 Contest Instructions
- 2020-2021 Essay Submission Cover Page
- 2020-2021 Chairman's Letter to Principals
- 2020-2021 Chairman's Letter to Teachers
- Benefits of the Do the Write Thing Challenge
- How the Do the Write Thing Challenge can change minds
OAG’s 2019 Finalists
- 2019-2020 Do the Write Thing Challenge winning essays: Tyler Willis and Amari Edmonds
- 2019-2020 Do the Write Thing Challenge essay excerpts
- IN THE NEWS: Finding a Solution to Gun Violence: D.C. Students Win Anti-violence Essay Contest (WJLA)