Youth Programs

Skip Navigation Links
Poster Contest for High
School Students
Video Contest for
College Students
Teen News Notes


How You Can Help

Your donation will help us spread the Christopher message. more>>


Three Minutes a Day


Enjoy our daily inspirational stories and reflections. more>>



NEW YORK, April 27th, 2017 - The Christophers announced eight winners today in their Twenty-Seventh Annual Poster Contest for High School Students.      

 Every year, students – grades 9 through 12 – are invited to create a poster that visually interprets the timeless theme, “You Can Make a Difference.” This year’s contest drew over 1,000 entries from high schools all across the United States. The far-reaching impact generated by one person performing one small but heartfelt act of generosity was epitomized to great effect in this year’s contest. As always, students employed a wide range of media in their submissions, from personalized photographs to remarkable hand-drawn or painted sketches.

            The first prize of $1,000 was awarded to Mitchell Leon, a senior at Washougal High School in Washington D.C. Mitchell’s poster was comprised of a photograph of five young Ecuadorian children gathered around a dinner table, digging into what looks to be a delicious meal. In the forefront of the picture, a young girl whom Leon identifies as Julieta smiles sweetly at the camera.

To the left of Julieta, Mitchell has written a powerful Mother Teresa quote emphasizing the widespread positive influence that comes from a single act of giving. Leon goes on to explain how this particular phrase ties into the heart of his recent volunteer trip to the slums of Calderon, located in the capital city of Quito, Ecuador.

“During my two-week stay in this humble part of the world,” Mitchell confided in a personal note to The Christophers, “I learned how proud the people are. Our mission was to provide additional construction on a day care for the underprivileged youth of that area. However, they would not allow us to help their community alone. Together, regardless of barriers of race, religion, or language, we collaborated together to achieve a common goal.”

“My mother shared our story online,” he continued, “and to her astonishment, it inspired many others to take up service. This leads to the Mother Teresa quote on the poster: “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the water to create many ripples.”

High school sophomore and second place winner of $500, James Fallon, currently attends Iona Preparatory School in New Rochelle, NY. He also recognized the importance of working together to achieve a shared objective. As one of the youth leaders at the Heavenly Productions Foundation, a charity that helps underprivileged students throughout the world, Fallon, with the aid of his fellow volunteers, has already headed several successful school supply drives, one of which is prominently featured in an assortment of pictures displayed in his digital poster. Also included in James’s photo collage are some of the happy recipients of these products.

“To date,” James wrote in an e-mail to The Christophers, “we have delivered over 7,300 backpacks…Most recently I pledged 1,000 new children’s books to Victorious Academy in Rwanda, Africa…Each year, I write e-mails to my friends and family, and raise money to purchase new backpacks and school supplies for kids in need.”

“I get such a great feeling when I go and give the backpacks and school supplies out,” Fallon concluded, referring to the firsthand experience of his philanthropic work. “I believe even though I am a still a kid, I can make a difference in the lives of these kids.”

Finally, our third prize winner of $250 comes from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina’s Academy for the Arts high school junior Tal Tamir. Tal submitted a poster consisting of a black and white photograph of a young girl with Down syndrome named Sydney. She is laughing and dancing enthusiastically, and wears a paint-stained T-shirt with the printed slogan “I Love Homies with Extra Chromies”. A purple and yellow butterfly hovers near the words “You Can Make a Difference. Inspire. Create. Care.” Tamir met Sydney during a volunteer experience with a society that helps people with Down syndrome, and described her new acquaintance as “lively and brilliant” with a “radiant smile, groovy dance moves and beautiful singing” who “made a difference not just for me but for everyone she passed by.”

This year, in addition to its three main award winners, The Christophers decided to distribute five additional honorable mentions. We offer many thanks to the applicants, who worked so hard on their artistic portrayals and the teachers who inspire them every day to “make a difference.”

            A non-profit organization founded in 1945, The Christophers uses mass media to encourage all individuals to make a positive difference in the world, as expressed in the Christopher motto: “It’s better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.”


1st Prize-Mitchell Leon

Washougal High School

1201 39th St.

Washougal, WA 98671

2nd Prize- James Fallon

Iona Preparatory School

255 Wilmot Road

New Rochelle, New York 10804

3rd Prize-Tal Tamir

Academy for the Arts, Science and Technology

895 International Dr.

Myrtle Beach, SC 29579


Honorable Mentions:

Cristal Blanco

Westside High School:
Houston TX 77077


Kimberlee Palmer


Helen Tariku
Bishop Ireton High School
Alexandria, VA 22314 


Jessica Coone
Elmira High School
Elmira, OR, 97487


Hope Christofferson

Sturgis Brown High School
Sturgis, SD 57785