Before you submit your entry, check out the rules for how to participate in Dreams for the Decade.

There’s a few rules you need to follow when you’re participating in Dreams for the Decade. These are summarised below, or you can read the full rules here.

Conditions of entry.

  • You can only enter if you’re 18 years or younger and living in Aotearoa New Zealand.
  • You can only enter once.
  • Your entry must be your own original work, made or created by you for this competition. It should express your own hopes and dreams for the decade.
  • Entries infringing Copyright won’t be accepted.
  • You can participate individually or as part of a group.
  • By entering, you give Barnardos permission to publish your entry in a published collection of entries and on social media, along with your first name and age.
  • By entering, you give permission for your entry to potentially be included in a Dreams for the Decade public exhibition later in 2020.

3 ways to enter.

You can enter Dreams for the Decade in one of three ways:

  • By submitting an original poem that you have written; OR
  • By submitting a piece of original visual art that you have created; OR
  • By submitting an original entry that you have created that combines poetry and visual art.

Sending entries in.

Choose one way to send in your entry to Barnardos and the Judging Panel:

  • For visual art, submit via physical post (no larger than A3 size, to: Dreams for the Decade, Barnardos, PO Box 6343, Marion Square, Wellington 6141) OR email it to ( OR upload to Instagram and tag @dreamsforthedecade.
  • For poetry in writing or spoken word, email it to us: OR upload to Instagram and tag @dreamsforthedecade
  • You can choose to submit an entry combining poetry and visual art. Submit it via post (details above), email ( or by sharing on Instagram and tagging @dreamsforthedecade

Please note.

  • We can’t receive emails larger than 20MB. If your entry is a larger file size, please send it in by uploading via (use
  • If you send us a physical copy of your visual art or poetry (or combined art/poetry entry) and you want it returned to you, include a self addressed envelope with a stamp on it – otherwise we won’t be able to return it to you.

Include with your entry:

  • Your name
  • Your age
  • The best contact details for us to reach you at (email or phone or address)
  • Any information you want us to know about your entry.

Categories & judging.

  • Each entry in Dreams for the Decade will be eligible to be included in one judging category only: 5 years old and younger OR 6-8 years old OR 9-12 years old OR 13-18 years old OR the Group category (can be a group of children and/or young people of different ages – all must be 18 years or younger).
  • The Dreams for the Decade Judging Panel will select the top entries in each category to be awarded prizes. The decision of the Judging Panel is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Closing date.

Dreams for the Decade closed on 20 July 2020. We are not accepting entries for judging in 2020 now, but you are still welcome to participate if you would like to send us your dream.


  • Barnardos will handle any personal information that you share with us through the competition (e.g. your name and contact details) consistently with the requirements of the Privacy Act 1993.
  • By entering Dreams for the Decade and sharing your contact details with Barnardos, you give Barnardos permission to contact you in future about Dreams for the Decade and our advocacy for children’s rights and needs.

All the rules in one document.