Young Chicago-Area Artist Honored for Her Vision of Peace

Twelve-year-old Ashley Zhang has been creating art since she was eight years old, but the Bloomingdale, IL native says it wasn’t until she entered her drawing in the 29th annual Lions International Peace Poster Contest that she realized the kind of person she wanted to be.

“I just pictured what peace was like to me,” Ashley told CBS 2 Chicago.

On January 19, 2017, Chicago leaders in arts and youth outreach selected Ashley as one of 116 international Peace Poster Contest finalists from more than 600,000 young artists in 60 countries. Ashley’s Peace Poster is now being displayed in Loyola University’s Museum of Art alongside the entries from other finalists.

The winner of the International Peace Poster Contest will be announced on March 4 at Lions Day with the United Nations—an annual gathering of Lions, dignitaries and lawmakers to discuss solutions to global humanitarian challenges—and honored at Lions Clubs International 100th annual Convention in Chicago this July.

Every year, Lions clubs from around the world empower more than half a million children to express their visions of peace by sponsoring Peace Poster materials. The theme for this year’s contest was “A Celebration of Peace.” Ashley’s entry was made possible by the Bloomingdale Lions Club, which partnered with her school to provide the contest materials to students.

Lions Clubs International’s 1.4 million members improve people’s lives in more than 200 countries and geographic areas by identifying and addressing local and global needs, which include engaging youth, relieving hunger, protecting the environment, saving sight, and much more.

To learn more and to find a club in your community, visit lionsclubs.org. To learn more about the Peace Poster contest, visit lionsclubs.org/peaceposter.

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