To mark International Day of the Girl Child this year on 11 October, the British Council, in partnership with Room to Read and UNICEF is announcing a call for short fiction stories by young people.





My Heroine

For age groups 10-14

Write a story about your ideal heroine. Heroines are not limited to women actors that you see on television and in the magazines. The word means much more. A heroine could be somebody who is strong, somebody who is hard-working, somebody caring or somebody who makes a difference in your society or in this world.

We would love for you to imagine a heroine of your own and write a story about her.

Our Lives Today

For age groups 14-15

Mental health is an area that is rarely talked about. Writing stories become a good way to express how you or the people around you are feeling. Reading stories about others also becomes a good way to understand people better. We would like to encourage you to examine your life and of people around you and see how different situations including the current pandemic affect us. How are the experiences of a girl different from that of a boy?


  • All stories will be published as an online compilation.
  • 10 writers from each theme will be selected to participate in a week-long workshop on storytelling
  • After the workshop, participants will rework their stories under the mentorship of children’s book professionals
  • Two books, one on each theme with stories finalised by the participants will be illustrated by women artists and will be digitally published
  • The published books will be featured during partnering organisations programmes and showcase events


  • Stories will be selected through a panel formed by the three partnering organisations and will involve children literature professionals
  • Stories that have women and/or girls as main characters are more likely to be selected
  • Imaginative and innovative stories are more likely to be selected
  • Stories should be original

Deadline for submission: 9 November 2020