This literary competition was first held within the Cardinia Shire in 2008 and was named after Harold Bould. In 2020 the name was changed to the Bould-Young Award. The competition was open to all year 10 students from all the secondary schools within the Cardinia Shire. Now students are invited to submit an essay of approximately six hundred words addressing these issues “Why would you like to trek the Kokoda Trail” and “What was the importance of the Kokoda Campaign in the Battle for Australia”. The concept came from the adjoining Baw Baw Shire, organised by the State Member for Narracan, Gary Blackwood. The purpose of the competition was to encourage young people to research and understand the sacrifice by so many ordinary people, like a farmer from Cardinia, made in WW2 to keep this nation free.
Harold Bould was one of ten children, his family were potato and onion farmers from Cardinia, near Pakenham. Five brothers from this family enlisted for service during WW2. Harold and his brother Keith did not come home. Private Harold Bould who served in B company, 39th Battalion, was killed in action at Kokoda Village. On 29th July 1942, only eight days after the Japanese invasion of Papua New Guinea, he has no known grave. Brother Keith was taken prisoner at the fall of Singapore and he died when the prison ship returning to Japan was sunk by the Allies.
The words of Lt. Col. Ralph Honner, DSO. MC. CO. 39th Australian Infantry Battalion reminds us that:-
“They died so young. They missed so much. They gave up so much, their hopes, their dreams, their loved ones. They laid down their lives that their friends might live. Greater love hath no man than this.
Wilma Elizabeth Forster (nēe Oram) Young AM, was an Australian Army nurse during WW2. She was evacuated from Singapore in February 1942 and was aboard the Vyner Brooke when the ship was sunk in Bangka Strait by Japanese aircraft. After surviving in the water for many hours she came ashore at Bangka Island and became a prisoner of war (POW) until 1945. Wilma married Alan Livingstone Young, who had also been a POW. They settled on a dairy farm at Cardinia and had 4 children. Aside from her work on the farm she was an active member of the RSL, serving as the Treasurer and later President of its Pakenham branch. She worked for causes including greater recognition for Vietnam War veterans and to raise money for the Australian Service Nurses National Memorial, unveiled in Canberra on 2 October 1999.
The service and sacrifice in defence of our homeland, must always remain as part of our heritage, Our generation has a duty to ensure that the next generation of Australians understand that sacrifice and that it is never forgotten.
This competition is held annually with the intention that, each year, the winner will receive a fully sponsored escorted trip to Kokoda and learn at first hand something of Australia’s history.