KANSAS CITY, Mo. (March 22, 2019) – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is now accepting entries for its 2019-20 Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen youth scholarship competitions. The announcement comes just two weeks after the VFW’s 2019 Legislative Conference concluded in Washington, D.C., where the top national winners were recognized. Dedicated to encouraging a better understanding and appreciation of America, the VFW’s Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen essay competitions help foster patriotism among today’s youth. The programs also promote friendly competition and rewards success in the form of some $3 million in scholarships. This year’s theme for both programs challenges students to answer the question, "What Makes America Great?” The Voice of Democracy audio-essay competition is open to all students in grades 9-12. Each state winner receives an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., where the top national prize of a $30,000 scholarship is awarded. More than 40,000 students competed in last year’s competition. Christine Troll, the 2019 national Voice of Democracy winner, was sponsored by VFW Post 554 and its Auxiliary in Somerset, Pa. Watch her deliver her award-winning essay<https://www.vfw.org/VFWDC2019>. The Patriot’s Pen essay competition is open to all students in grades 6-8, with a top award of $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. Daniel Rodriguez, sponsored by VFW Post 2066 in Nogales, Ariz., was awarded the first-place prize among more than 111,000 student essays submitted in this year’s Patriot’s Pen competition. Watch him deliver his award-winning entry here<https://www.vfw.org/VFWDC2019>. Student entries may be submitted (along with a completed entry form) to their local participating VFW Post. The deadline for both contests is October 31, 2019. Find your local VFW Post<https://www.vfw.org/oms/findpost.aspx>, or read more about the competitions<https://www.vfw.org/community/youth-and-education/youth-scholarships>. -vfw- About the VFW: The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is the nation's largest and oldest major war veterans organization. Founded in 1899, the congressionally-chartered VFW is comprised entirely of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, Guard and Reserve forces. With more than 1.6 million VFW and Auxiliary members located in 6,200 Posts worldwide, the nonprofit veterans service organization is proud to proclaim "NO ONE DOES MORE FOR VETERANS” than the VFW, which is dedicated to veterans’ service, legislative advocacy, and military and community service programs. For more information or to join, visit our website at www.vfw.org<http://www.vfw.org>. Media Contact: Randi K. Law, communications manager, email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>.