OTTAWA, November 9, 2010 /Canada NewsWire/ - For the first time in its 159 year history, Canada Post is asking Canadians to submit and vote on the design that will become a Canadian postage stamp. Starting today, until January 10, 2011, Canadians are invited to submit designs online to www.deliverhope.ca. The submission that proves most popular online will become one of 20 semi-finalists to be submitted to the Stamp Advisory Committee (SAC). One of those designs will become the 2011 Mental Health stamp.
"A stamp design will be seen by millions of Canadians; it has an incredible power to invite conversation," says Mary Traversy, Senior vice-president, Transaction Mail, at Canada Post. "We're asking entrants to convey important themes about mental health in a single image and make the winning stamp an ambassador for awareness."
The SAC will choose five designs from the 20 semi-finalists. These five designs will be voted on by the public from February 14 to March 14. The winning design will be announced in April 2011.
Canada Post made mental health its cause of choice in 2008. Since then, customers, employees, suppliers and the public have raised more than $2.5 million for the Canada Post Foundation for Mental Health. Some $600,000 of that was from sales of the 2008 and 2009 mental health stamps. Canada Post recently issued this year's mental health stamp, which is intended to help the company reach its $2 million campaign goal. A dollar from every booklet sold supports the Foundation.
The Foundation provides critical funding to community based, non-profit groups helping people living with mental illness - a growing legacy of support for the more than 7 million Canadians who will need help with mental health problems this year. Over $2.5 million in grants have been distributed, to organizations across the country, by the Foundation.
Details on the Canada Post Mental Health Stamp Design Competition
Eligible Canadians have until January 10, 2010 to enter the competition to design Canada Post's 2011 Mental Health stamp. The website www.deliverhope.ca includes instructions and the full contest rules.
Entrants will be asked to include a short essay, up to 100 words, about their design and why they feel it will raise awareness and understanding of mental health issues.
Entrants can promote their submissions using social media. The submission that proves most popular online will become one of the 20 semi-finalists, and its designer will win an iPad. The other 19 semi-finalists will be chosen by an advisory panel including mental health experts, representatives from the Canada Post Foundation for Mental Health and stamp and design experts from Canada Post.
Canada Post's Stamp Advisory Committee, a national committee that guides Canada Post in selecting stamp subjects and designs, will select five designs from the 20 semi-finalists. The committee is made up of knowledgeable Canadians from across the country selected for their historic, design or philatelic knowledge. It reflects English-speaking and French-speaking populations and the changing ethnic diversity of the country.
On February 14, 2011, Canada Post will unveil the five finalists to the public and open the voting. Canadians will be able to vote for their favourite submission on www.deliverhope.ca. or Facebook until voting closes on March 14, 2010. The design receiving the most votes will be declared the winner, to be announced in April 2011.
In addition to having their original artwork produced by a professional design firm and the resulting stamps issued for sale in September 2011, the winner will receive a framed commemorative enlargement of the stamp and a $500 honorarium will be donated to a mental health charity of their choice.
As with all stamps, Canada Post will hold the copyright to the winning design.
The PERMANENT™ domestic rate semi-postal stamp will be issued with a 10-cent surcharge to generate funds for the Foundation.
For full contest rules and regulations, please visit www.deliverhope.ca.