A HARWICH-based leading rice brand is inviting schools and playgroups across the country to take part in a rangoli art competition.

Up for grabs is the chance to win a visit from international wildlife charity Born Free’s education team.

Laila basmati rice is part of the Surya Foods brand, which has supplied to supermarkets including Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons.

Rangoli is a form of art and a popular Diwali tradition. 

During Diwali, people create rangoli art on the floors at the entrance of their homes to welcome Goddess Lakshmi into their homes and bring good luck.

Laila has organised the competition as part of a national campaign to raise awareness of Diwali, also known as the “festival of lights” and to bring the much-loved South Asian festival to a wider UK audience.

Diwali takes place on November 12 this year and is marked by Sikhs, Hindus and Jains.

The UK is already home to some of the biggest Diwali celebrations outside of South Asia.

To take part, all schools and playgroups need to do is create their very own bright and beautiful rangoli artworks in and around playgrounds.

From there, they need to take a picture and share the creations with Laila on social media for a chance to win.

Laila is currently supporting Born Free  by donating a penny per bag of its rice sold during Diwali month (November 2023) to help raise thousands of pounds for the charity’s global elephant conservation work. 

In addition, Laila wants to make Diwali a key time for a UK audience to focus its attention on the plight of elephants globally and help educate young children on the importance of animal conservation. 

Born Free and Laila are working together for a cruelty-free and animal-friendly Diwali. 

The Asian elephant is classified as Endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Laila is also gifting thousands of its elephant soft toys to children’s hospitals and hospices around the country, including The Evelina London and Birmingham Children’s Hospital among many others.

The competition is open to entries from schools, nurseries or playgroups located in the United Kingdom and is open to any group of young people aged five to 11. 

Artworks created from October 10 to November 9 are eligible for entry.