LIHUE — Emma Badua, a fourth-grade student at Elsie Wilcox Elementary School, was confident as she wielded a knife to cut the congratulatory cake Wednesday in her classroom.
Badua was being honored as the top winner of the Kauai Association for Family and Community Education Character Counts essay and art contest that had the theme of trustworthiness.
Wilcox School had four of the six winners from the contest.
“But this is not all,” said Laurie Ho, KAFCE vice president. “In addition to the first place at the county level, Emma earned first-place honors at the state level with Terry Phillips, the state representative, presenting that award. Normally, Emma would get her essay back, but today, she just has a copy because her original copies have been sent for consideration at the national level.”
Jenai Chloe Cadiz finished third in the contest. Danya Agustin Melendez and Kianah Gonsalves finished with honorable mention awards, all students at Wilcox.
Jace Domingo, a student from the Kapaa Elementary School, was presented second-place honors during a special KAFCE luncheon Saturday at the Lihue Neighborhood Center.
Zain Shimabukuro of St. Catherine School won an honorable mention award.
The Character Counts essay and artwork contest, open to fourth-graders, is based on the character traits using the “Six Pillars of Character — Caring, Citizenship, Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility and Fairness.”
Badua, a member of the Wilcox School Student Body leadership, wrote, “A trustworthy person is someone who we can trust and be sure that the trust will not be betrayed. A trustworthy person is someone who is honest, dependable and loyal.”
She said she demonstrates some of these traits in her daily life.
“Whenever I do something wrong, and no matter what the consequence will be, I try to be honest to my parents,” Badua said. “I don’t want to disappoint my family and lose their trust so I tell the truth, even if the truth hurts.”
She believes she is a good role model and trustworthy person, and concludes, “Are you a trustworthy person?”
Source: The Garden Island