On 23 April 2021, World Book and Copyright Day, the African Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Book Club released its first ever reading lists of African titles aimed at children age 6-12, to teach them about the importance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Arabic, English, French, Kiswahili and in an honorary indigenous African language .

Every two months the African SDG Book Club will release a book list related to each of the SDGs. In June, the African SDG Book Club will address the issue of Goal 3: Good health & Well-Being.

On the occasion of World Book Day, the United Nations Information Centre in Namibia, together with leading African organisations representing publishers, libraries, booksellers, authors and the promotion of books for youth, launched the African SDG Book Club with 17 books related to Sustainable Development Goal 1: No Poverty and Goal 2: Zero Hunger.

Samuel Kolawole, Chairman of the African Publishers Network (APNET) said: At long last, selection of good quality books for African children has materialised and will go a long way to promote literacy and ensure that the continent of Africa makes good progress towards achieving the SDGs.

Olatoun Gabi-Williams, Founder of Borders Literature for all Nations said: This is a rich range of well-told and beautifully illustrated books from Africa. They deserve good fortune as they make their way within the global diversity of children’s books. 

Lily Nyariki, Association for Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) said: ADEA congratulates all the authors and publishers who submitted the initial works that got into the winning list. Well done.

Mr Mandla Ntombela, President African Library & Information Associations & Institutions (AfLIA) added: AfLIA is excited at the launch of the  UN SDG book club, African chapter. We congratulate all the organizations who worked tirelessly behind the scenes as well as all African authors, publishers and  booksellers.  It's a new dawn for the African book sector.

Dr Wale Okediran, Secretary General, Pan African Writers' Association (PAWA) said: The Pan African Writers Association (PAWA) is happy to be part of this epoch making project aimed at bringing to everybody's attention, quality books for the education, entertainment and recreation of African children. Our hearty congratulations to all our colleagues who have made this possible.

Mr. Dare Oluwatuyi, President of the Booksellers Association of Nigeria (BAN) added: The African book space has waited for this initiative.  Since the Africa 100 Best Books Project, there have not been many major efforts at calling attention to the books of the continent in a loud and sustained way.  It is further noteworthy that this is also coming in a bumper package that equally promotes the very laudable UN SDGs goals. African Booksellers stand with you in unison.

Anthea Basson, National Information Officer, UNIC (United Nations Information Centre) Windhoek: Children carry a great responsibility to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) because they inherit both our reality and the world we hope to create. We promote the SDGs in children's books so they feel inspired to bring about a better future for all. From ending poverty and ensuring zero hunger to justice and climate change, we hope to encourage children to make a difference.

The recommended books for SDGs 1 and 2 are:


 

 

SDG 1: No Poverty

SDG 2: Zero Hunger

English

 

·       Kayim’s Quest for Good Fortune 

Author: Ama Worla

Illustrator: Cycil Abban Jones

Publisher: Mountype Publishers (GHANA)

 

·       Leg Power: Victor Wanyama 

Author: Jimmy Asudi 

Illustrator: Abel Murumba

Publisher: Nsemia Inc. Publishers (KENYA)

 

·       Monkey Business 

Author: Chukwuemeka Iroegbu Chukwudi 

Publisher: University Press Plc (NIGERIA)

 

·       Village Boy 

Author: Anietie Usen 

Illustrator: Mike Asukwo

Publisher: Origami - imprint of Parresia Publishers (NIGERIA)

·       Chokora: A Kenyan Scavenger 

Author: PGN Mbugwa 

Illustrator: Robert Maina

Publisher: Nsemia Inc. Publishers (KENYA)

 

·       Koko Grows Food 

Author: Maliya Mzyece Sililo 

Illustrator: Harrington Kanyanta

Publisher: Sotrane Publishers (ZAMBIA)

 

·       The Magic Formula 

Author: Ibrahima Ndiaye 

Illustrator: Capucine Mazille

Publisher: Bakame Editions (RWANDA)

 

·       Sabina: The Rain Girl 

Author: Christopher Okemwa 

Illustrator: Abel Murumba

Publisher: Nsemia Inc. Publishers (KENYA)

Arabic:

 

·       The Feast Dress

Author: Abeer Mohamed Anwar

Illustrator: Sahar Abdullah

Publisher: Nahdit Misr Publishing Group (EGYPT)

·       Farhan and Farha Adventure in the Village

Author: Harun Abubakar and F. Shariff

Illustrator: Denis Muchiri

Publisher: Atfaal Publishers Limited (KENYA)

French:

 

 

·       L’arbre au secret

Illustrator & Author: John Kilaka

Translator: Jean René

Publisher: Yanbow Al Kitab (MORROCO)

Kiswahilii:

 

·       Hatima ya Musa

Author: Dominic Maina

Illustrator: Tonny Siema

Publisher: Queenex Publisher (KENYA)

 

·       Utenzi Haki za Watoto

Author: Yusuf Abbas

Illustrator: Khalid Yusuf

Publisher: Readit Books Ltd (TANZANIA)

·       Kijiji cha Ukame

Author: Hamisi Babusa

Publisher: Storymoja Publishers (KENYA)

·       Debe la Dhahabu

Author: Mehta Abeid

Illustrator: Abdul Gugu

Publisher: Mathews Bookstore & Stationers (TANZANIA)

Honorary language

 

Akan
Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire

·       Kweku Anansi and His New Wife
by Farida Salifu

E-Library: World Stories

Yoruba
West Africa, Cuba and Brazil

·       Alake, the Cold Water Seller
by Omolara Fadiya

Publisher: Rasmed Publications (NIGERIA)

     

 

African authors, publishers or booksellers interested in submitting books for future SDGs can do so in English and French.

The website for the African Chapter of the SDG Book Club is:

https://namibia.un.org/en/125415-sdg-book-club-african-chapter

Follow the African SDG Book Club on Facebook and YouTube.

 

The African SDG Book Club follows the launches of clubs in Norway, Indonesia, Portugal and Brazil. The world’s publishing community through the IPA supports the SDGs as an investment in future generations of leaders, innovators and agents of change.

The founding partners for the African chapter of the book club are:

·       Pan African Writers' Association (PAWA)

·       Pan African Booksellers Association (PABA)

·       Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA)

·       African Publishers Network (APNET)

·       African Library & Information Associations & Institutions (AfLIA)

·       Borders Literature for all Nations

·       United Nations Information Centre Windhoek

 

 

 

About the SDG Book Club

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Book Club was launched at Bologna International Childrens Book Fair in 2019 and aims to use books as a tool to encourage children ages 6-12 to interact with the principles of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through a curated reading list of books from around the world related to each of the 17 SDGs in all six official UN languages—Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish.

https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sdgbookclub/

 

About the SDGs

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals were adopted by world leaders at the historic Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015. Encompassing everything from health, to gender equality, and education, the Goals will mobilize efforts around the world to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind.

https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/

 

About the organizers of the SDG Book Club Africa Chapter (A-Z):

African Publishers Network (APNET)  

The African Publishers Network, established in 1992 and hosted by the Ghana Publishers Association (GPA), brings together national publishers associations and publishing communities from 42 African countries. Seeking to strengthen indigenous publishing throughout Africa, its activities cover all geographic and linguistic zones of the continent (English, French, Portuguese and Arabic). APNET’s main objectives are to promote trade through intra-African links and to the international world through book fair exhibitions, to share information amongst its members and capacity building in order to meet Africa’s need for quality books, relevant to African social, political, economic and cultural realities. 

APNET is tasked with promoting the aims and objectives of the African Chapter of the UN SDG Book Club within the pan –African community of publishers. 

 

African Library and information Associations and Institutions (AfLIA) 

AfLIA is an independent international not-for-profit organization based in Ghana, West Africa, which pursues the interests of library and information associations, library and information services, librarians and information workers and the communities they serve in Africa. AfLIA empowers the library and information community to actively promote the African development agenda through dynamic services that transform livelihoods. 

AfLIA keeps a mailing list of volunteer libraries willing to work to ensure African Children read and understand all about the SDGs. AfLIA will coordinate activities of participating libraries as centrally as possible and provide a reporting pathway so that it can know about the activities of participating libraries. These reports will help the UN track the success of the UN SDG Book Club African Chapter.

 

Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) 

The Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) is the voice of education in Africa and a key network of Education Ministries. It plays a significant role in the education space as a convener, knowledge creator and forum for policy dialogue, working through its Inter-Country Quality Nodes (ICQNs) and the Task Force on Education Management and Policy Support. ADEA contributes to the empowerment of African countries to develop quality education and training systems that respond to the countries' emergent needs and drive social and economic transformation sustainably. ADEA connects the African Chapter of the UN SDG Book Club with schools across Africa through the Ministries of Education. 

 

Pan African Writers’Association (PAWA)  

Founded in 1989, the Pan-African Writers Association (PAWA) is a Ghana-based cultural institution and umbrella body of writers associations across the African continent and the Diaspora. Its aim is to strengthen the cultural and economic bonds between the people of Africa against the background of the continent’s acknowledged diverse but rich cultural, political and economic heritage.  

PAWA writers ensure a steady supply to the African Chapter of high quality children's books with strong SDG themes. PAWA writers importantly, provide voluntary translation services to the African Chapter.  

 

Pan African Booksellers Association (PABA)  

The Pan-African Booksellers Association (PABA) is a non-profit organization composed of national booksellers associations from across Africa. PABA offers training programs aimed at association-building, advocacy and bookselling.  

PABA booksellers will stock the reading lists of the African Chapter and are encouraged to organize and/or promote related child-centered activities eg reading clubs, meet the author, meet the illustrator events and parent-child readings etc. 

 

Borders Literature for all Nations (Borders) 

Borders, a voluntary project, is an African book industry journal and publicity platform offering online and live services. In addition to book reviews and book trade interviews, a main project of Borders is the Borders SDG Book Club which hosts book-chats with authors of children’s books, with illustrators and with school-children. The Borders SDG Book Club supports the overall mission of Borders Literature for all Nations: the promotion of the reading culture in Nigeria and Africa and the promotion of the reading of African books worldwide. Books featured on the reading list of the UN SDG Book Club African Chapter will be prioritized for promotion by the Borders SDG Book Club. 

 

United Nations Information Center Windhoek Namibia 

Unic Namibia is the founding technical partner of the African chapter of the UN SDG Book Club and builds and hosts the dedicated website. By lending expertise to support the decision making of the Management Committee of the UN SDG Book Club African Chapter: [PABA, PAWA, BORDERS, AfLIA, ADEA, APNET], UNIC provides continuity and coordination of the website affairs and brings the UN’s voice to the table. 

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