Join the Commonwealth Sustainable Energy Transition (CSET): Children and Youth Challenge! Details about eligibility and how to enter are below. The deadline for submissions was 10 September 2023 and is now closed.

We need energy to do the things we do every day. But did you know most of the energy we use comes from sources that will run out unless we find new ways to make it without harming the Earth?

We need energy that is good for the environment and won't run out! That's what we call 'sustainable energy'.

By the year 2030, we want to make sure everyone has affordable, reliable, clean and sustainable energy. This means we need to work together and make big changes in how we make and use energy.

But most of the time, the words we use to talk about energy and the climate can be confusing.

That's why we want children and young people to come up with ideas for:

  1. how we can teach people about sustainable energy in our communities in fun and easy to understand ways, and

  2. Ways we can use sustainable energy in our communities.

We also want teachers and educators to share their best ideas for teaching about sustainable energy to children and communities.

The Commonwealth believes in investing in young people and helping them lead the way to a better future for everyone.

Join us in this challenge and let's work together to make the world a cleaner, better place for everyone!




There are three categories in total. Category A and B for persons aged 7 to 17 years old, and Category C for educators of any age who educate their community on sustainable energy.

Please note:

  • All individuals and team members must be a resident in a Commonwealth member country.
  • Category A and C are individual submissions. Category B will require a team (minimum three people) for successful submissions.
  • Submission for Category A and B must be led by children and youth from the following age groups (inclusive, and as of 31 August 2023): 7 to 10 years old; 11 to 14 years old; and 15 to 17 years old.
  • Only submit original content. All applications must be of original creation by the applicant(s). 
  • Entries must be submitted in English.
  • The deadline for all submissions was 10 September 2023.


Submission categories and requirements

There are three categories in total:


Category A - Stories written by children and youth, on the innovation and creative use or teaching of sustainable energy in their communities:

  • Identify examples of innovative ways that increase the awareness and/or the use of sustainable energy in your community
  • Be a reporter; take pictures, and notes of your selected example
  • Write the example into a short story


Category B - Prototypes of technological solutions or innovations developed by the children and youth with or for sustainable energy:

  • Take a photo of a problem (related to energy) in your community
  • See how it can be solved by using clean / renewable / sustainable energy (e.g. sun, wind, water)
  • Test your solution, and record how it is going (what did you do, what the impact has been and what you have learned)


Category C - Sample or case studies of best practices and materials used to educate and engage communities on sustainable energy. Category C is open to all (any age) formal and informal educators to share their best practices and educational materials:

  • Identify ways and materials that successfully engage your community to learn about sustainable energy
  • Collate evidence of your sessions (write about your methodology, take a video, collate the materials you use)

Prize details

Winners of each category will be awarded on a regional basis, within the regional groupings below:

  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Caribbean
  • Europe and Canada
  • The Pacific

All winners will receive certificates from the Commonwealth Secretariat. The winning entries will be invited to pitch their ideas to panels made up of policymakers, technical experts and youth leaders within the sustainable energy space, with the potential for implementation in communities, dependent on funding and the suitability of the solution.

There will be an additional opportunity for one of the winning entries in the 15-17 years category to attend the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai, UAE, with the Commonwealth delegation to present their work. This will be an entry that: 

Winners of Category C will be showcased as part of a collection of best practices for education in the Commonwealth.

Judging criteria



Category A

Category B

Category C


Impact on the community (reach, uptake, engagement, replicability)



Innovation - (creativity, uniqueness)


Benefit to the environment




Appropriateness and feasibility for the local context. (cost, tapping on local resource availability, relevance, etc)


Inclusivity - (accessibility, inclusivity, consultative, use of participatory design practices, fair representation etc)


Potential to address needs and gaps of the Sustainable Energy Transition



Team & Project Make-up (expertise, intergenerational, diversity)


Potential to support audience variability of underserved and minority groups


Technicality and market potential - Technological Solutions



Judging decisions are final and cannot be challenged.



The first round of judging will be carried out by international youth from across the Commonwealth including members of CSET Youth Action Group, Commonwealth Youth for Sustainable Urbanisation, Commonwealth scholars, and the SDG7 Youth Constituency.


Additional resources for download

Briefing Note: Children & Youth

Briefing Note: Educators