With 150 days to go until the Trinbago 2023 Commonwealth Youth Games, the Organising Committee has announced the winner of its mascot design competition. The selection was made from submissions by children between the ages of 6 and 17 from across Trinidad and Tobago.

The winning artist is eight-year-old Djibril Annisette of Santa Cruz, who has designed a turtle named Cocoyea. Djibril, an aspiring artist and pupil at The British Academy in Port of Spain, demonstrated his creativity and knowledge of the twin islands’ significance as home to the second largest leatherback turtle nesting site in the world.

The concept behind Djibril’s design is that, just like the tough, flexible spine of the coconut frond, Cocoyea, a leatherback turtle, represents resilience in the face of difficulty. Its strong flippers serve to sweep away divisive elements, while simultaneously enveloping all citizens in a warm and unifying space.

The leatherback turtle is important to Trinidad and Tobago for its ecological, economic, and cultural significance. Meanwhile, the mascot’s back or shell depicts elements of the national instrument, the pan, another important part of the country’s DNA.

The 7th Commonwealth Youth Games will be held across both islands from 4 - 11 August. It will feature a sporting programme of Aquatics (Swimming), Athletics and Para Athletics, Cycling (Road and Track), Triathlon, FAST5 Netball, Rugby Sevens and Beach Volleyball. Emerging athletes aged 14-18 will be joining from across the Commonwealth’s 72 nations and territories.

Diane Henderson, Trinidad and Tobago Commonwealth Games Association President, said: “We would like to thank all the children who entered the mascot competition. The quality of the entries was extremely high and we are thrilled with the winning design that will be a central part of Trinbago 2023. Cocoyea will no doubt become a household name just as the Games will be an event for the entire nation to share collectively.”

Expert designers are now working to bring Djibril’s design to life, with the final illustrations for the full size mascot to be revealed shortly.

Hear from Djibril: https://youtube.com/shorts/eSfd9PTjb9I