FT LAUDERDALE, FL – The Jason Taylor Foundation is pleased to announce that Nyanjah Charles has earned the honor of being named South Florida Youth Poet Laureate (SFYPL) for the 2023-24 school year. A current Alexander W. Dreyfoos Junior School of the Arts senior, Nyanjah submitted a unique writing portfolio earning high marks from judges. A special presentation and book release party to celebrate Miss Charles’ accomplishment and showcase her original poetry will take place will take place Friday, April 26 at NSU Art Museum in Ft. Lauderdale from 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm.

Nyanjah is an award-winning writer whose accolades include earning Silver Medals in poetry from the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in 2022 and 2023 and placing third in the 2023 Louder Than a Bomb Poetry Team Finals as a member of the A.W. Dreyfoos spoken word poetry team, Dreyfoos Jaguars. She has also served as a staff member and contributor for the student publication Seeds in the Black Earth since 2021.

The South Florida Youth Poet Laureate competition is a collaboration between the Jason Taylor Foundation’s Omari Hardwick bluapple Poetry Network, and Urban Word, a New York-based literary arts education and youth development organization. Partners of the program also include UKG, UPS, and the Miami Dolphins. Nyanjah is now the ninth winner of the South Florida Youth Poet Laureate.

An esteemed panel of educators, authors, poets, and community professionals meticulously read through the largest submission pool since the inception of the South Florida Youth Poet Laureate program which included a portfolio of poetry and each student’s résumé. At the end of the process, one Youth Poet Laureate and two Youth Poet Ambassadors were selected. The Ambassadors are Alysha Joseph, a senior at Atlantic Technical High School, and Rihanna Banjrath, a senior at Pompano Beach High School

“​The Youth Poet Laureate program genuinely enables young writers to present a collection of their work that displays their individual artistic styles and poetic voices,” said Shawntee` Herring, Program Director of the Omari Hardwick bluapple Poetry Network. “The viewpoints and profound reflections of these young poets are both inspiring and remarkable. We extend our congratulations to Nyanjah, Alysha, Rihanna, and all other participants for showcasing exceptional talent and the extraordinary work of educators in our Network.”

As Youth Poet Laureate, Nyanjah will work with the Jason Taylor Foundation and Urban Word to help foster community and social awareness through her poetry. In addition to the recognition and philanthropic and performance opportunities, the South Florida Youth Poet Laureate will publish her own chapbook to be presented and celebrated at a book release party.

About the Jason Taylor Foundation

In July 2004, Miami Dolphins legendary Defensive End, Jason Taylor, established the Jason Taylor Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) organization. The Foundation’s mission is to support and create programs that facilitate the personal growth and empowerment of South Florida’s children in need by focusing on improved health care, education, and quality of life.

Since opening its doors, the Jason Taylor Foundation has impacted tens of thousands of children through innovative programming including The Jason Taylor Reading Room, Cool Gear for the School Year, the Jason Taylor Children’s Learning Center, Jason Taylor Scholars, Careers in Sports Network, and the Omari Hardwick bluapple Poetry Network, among others. For more information on the Jason Taylor Foundation, please visit www.JasonTaylorFoundation.org  or follow on Facebook: www.facebook.com/jasontaylorfoundation or X (Twitter): www.twitter.com/x@jtfoundation99 or www.twitter.com/x@bluapplepoetry.