May 30, 2024

Military Kids Capture Life Through International Art Contest: Winners Announced

HARKER HEIGHTS, TX, May 28, 2024 — The Military Child Education Coalition’s (MCEC) 2024 Call for the Arts featured entries from across the globe. Hundreds of military-connected kids creatively expressed their strength, bravery, pride, and community.

“The artistic talent and creativity of our military-connected children is a joy to celebrate. For the past 22 years, thousands of children from our military families have shared their work and we received amazing art again this year.  Congratulations to our winners and thank you to everyone who participated. Selecting the winners was a challenge and an honor.” said Dr. Becky Porter, MCEC President and CEO.

We ask artists to write about the inspiration behind their work, and the stories are often as powerful as the art, talking about frequent moves or separation from a parent. Young artist Aurora wrote, “This picture has flowers from every place I’ve lived. It’s important to me to remember everywhere I’ve been that has made me who I am. I can bloom anywhere just like flowers bloom everywhere.”

This year we received numerous entries from Ankara Elementary High School, a DoDEA school supporting Ankara Support Facility in Turkey, a joint services base with Army, Navy and Air Force personnel, as well as local military and international refugees. One student, Tymur wrote, “For inspiration, I used my experiences and frustrations in Ukraine during the war. I created this to show how a child whose country is at war feels.”

Thanks to a partnership with Kellanova and WK Kellogg Co. (WKKC), and working through the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) and the Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) branches across the country, the 22nd Annual MCEC Call for the Arts was fortified by brands that serve millions of families around the world (Bear Naked, Kashi, Eggo, Rice Krispies Treats, Cheez-It, Pringles, and Pop Tarts). For the second year running, in celebration of Month of the Military Child Kellanova & WKKC supported a concurrent art contest, hosted by DeCA commissaries and AAFES Exchanges on military installations. Winning entries to the Commissary & Exchange contest were also considered for MCEC’s Call for the Arts.

Prizes were awarded to elementary (K-5), middle (6-8), and high school (9-12) levels for first, second, and third place, along with a spotlight award for each category. All winners received an invitation to attend the MCEC Global Training Summit in Washington, DC, to be held July 29-31, 2024, where their art will be displayed, and they will be formally recognized.

First Place:

Jack C., “Eagle”
Grade 5, Kailua, Hawaii
U.S. Air Force

Annabelle J., “Invisible Strings”
Grade 8, Madison, Alabama
U.S. Army

Charity D., “Cuddys”
Grade 11, Marrero, Louisiana
U.S. Navy

Second Place:

Aurora B., “Flowers”
Grade 5, New Brockton, Alabama
U.S. Army

Amaris C., “POV”
Grade 7, Vilseck, Germany
U.S. Army

Natalie P., “Freedom Flyers”
Grade 12, Pikeville, North Carolina
U.S. Air Force

Third Place:

Magnolia S. “Air Drop”
Grade 5, Sherwood, Arkansas
U.S. Air Force

Claire P., “See You Later!”
Grade 7, Albuquerque, New Mexico
U.S. Air Force

Genevieve F., “Lost”
Grade 12, Anaheim, California
U.S. Coast Guard

Spotlight Winners:

Lucia C., “When Father Goes Away”
Grade 5, Killeen, Texas
U.S. Army

Tymur R., “Country at War”
Grade 7, Ankara, Turkey
Joint Forces

Kyler F., “Combat Boots”
Grade 9, Fort Campbell, Kentucky
U.S. Army

Many thanks to these amazing young artists and performers for sharing their heartfelt stories and experiences, and all the artists who entered the contest. All artwork received is eligible for use in MCEC annual calendars, art displays, and campaigns throughout the year.

The next MCEC Call for the Arts contest will open in early 2025. View a gallery of winners on our website at

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About the Military Child Education Coalition
MCEC is a 501(c)(3) global nonprofit leadership and advocacy organization. MCEC supports all military-connected children by educating, advocating, and collaborating to resolve education challenges associated with the military lifestyle. Learn more about the national advocacy efforts of MCEC at and on social media at FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

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