Viva Andrada O’Flynn wins Covid Times Poetry Competition

Filipina Viva Andrada O’Flynn proves that even in times of COVID-19 inspiration can be found. Representing the Philippines, Viva recently was awarded as one of the winners of Covid Times Poetry Competition.

A global multilingual competition, Covid Times Poetry Competition, emphasised oneness among all, breaking barriers of language, nationality and age. It unleashed poets to inspire and heal the world during this pandemic. It received more than 3,000 entries from around the world. Abdul Basit Syed, founder of International NGO World Humanitarian Drive (WHD) believes that words can inspire and cure the agony of staying indoors in this lockdown. WHD used poetry to inspire millions of people to fight the battle against Coronavirus.

Born in the Philippines, now UK based, Viva Andrada O’Flynn is a woman of many talents — she has also worked as a journalist, artist, event organiser, entrepreneur, and chef. Viva constantly brings pride to the Philippines. Viva also wins bake-offs. Recently she won in all three categories of a Fairtrade Bake off at St. Stephen’s Church in Cinderford. Those categories were: Vegan (First Prize), Twelve of the Same and Freestyle Categories (Both in Second Prize). Viva’s business Love Viva Cakes and Crafts won Creative Business of 2019 awarded by Women’s Business Club.

Viva is also a multi-awarded flower arranger, winning the Cheltenham Horticultural Society’s Summer Craft and Flower Show in 2019 after placing second in the 2018 edition of the contest. She also placed second in the Winchcombe Flower Show 2019 and in 2018.

Viva was previously the Coffee Shop Manager of The Friendship Café and Entrepreneur’s Champion of Create On The Square. She is now also the secretary of the Gloucestershire Filipino Association.

In Viva’s own words: “In the UK, far from family and friends back home in the Philippines, I do my best to represent where I come from. In my own way I want others to see the goodness and creativity of the Filipino people.”

Here is Viva’s award winning poem:

who knew
by viva andrada o’flynn
who knew
we could be heroes
staying at home all day
binging on tv shows and movies
netflix, amazon prime, youtube, regular programming,
live streaming cooking shows, exercise videos, art workshops, musicals, jam sessions,
poetry readings, networking meetings, concerts, pub quizzes
we’re dressed in pjs, sofa is our throne
dreaming, planning, resting, healing ourselves and nature
experimenting on our play and creativity palette
mixed with words, art, recipes, fun and games
blowing bubbles, gardening, growing our greens, DIYs
what can we learn today
a new language, hobby, craft, skill, level up
what can we support
even a 99-year-old war veteran can walk to raise millions in donations
why can’t we
just giving fundraising to help those in need
text or bank transfer to give to charities and those vulnerable
we work from home, mingle with our family and friends online
we fight the virus from spreading, together the world at home
while frontliners work around the clock to keep life moving
staying at home all day
we could be heroes
who knew

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