His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, witnessed the UAE Board on Books for Young People’s (UAEBBY’s) announcement of the shortlisted books for the eighth edition of the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature 2016 at the Frankfurt Book Fair in Germany, taking place until 23 October.
The shortlisted books were revealed during a meeting organised by the UAEBBY at the Sharjah pavilion at the Frankfurt Book Fair, in the presence of HE Abdul Aziz Taryam, Chief Executive Officer, Advisor and General Manager of Etisalat Northern Emirates, Marwa Al Aqroubi, President of the UAEBBY Executive Board, as well as several international media representatives, international publishers and fair visitors, along with professionals and experts in publishing and children’s literature.
Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, Founder and Patron of the UAEBBY, stressed the fact that the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature is committed to carry on a mission that started eight years ago, which aims to encourage and motivate authors, illustrators and publishers to produce high quality books in both content and design, with the aim of contributing to the development of Arab children’s literature, and making reading attractive to children and young adults.
“Building the future and the civilisation starts with providing children with proper cognitive tools. Elevating Arab children’s literature is extremely important to achieve the intellectual advancement of our children and our homelands, along with being a fundamental pillar in the formation of children's characters. Since the inception of the Award, our vision has been focused on building a new global era for Arab children's books industry. Today, we are delighted with its significant development and progress – both qualitatively and quantitatively – with entries from all over the Arab world competing to win the award in various categories,” remarked Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi.
Reiterating the milestones that have been achieved in the field since the inception of the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature, HE Abdul Aziz Taryam said, “We, at Etisalat Group, are proud of the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature, and of its contributions to the development of the Arabic children’s literature industry, and to increasing the attractiveness of books targeting children and young adults across the Arab world. This doubles our responsibility to play an effective role in achieving the objectives of the advancement and enlightenment project that the UAE is leading,”
“We are keen to continue sponsoring the Etisalat award every year, because we believe in the crucial role that culture plays in building the knowledge-based society, and because we are committed to our social responsibility towards children and young adults. We will continue, with our partners in the UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY), to provide professionals in the Arabic children’s industry with support, in addition to setting the environment that helps them to enrich Arabic children’s libraries with quality books,” he added.
The jury announced the selection of books, which have been nominated to win the Award’s five categories. The shortlisted books in the ‘Children’s Book of the Year’ category (listed alphabetically in Arabic) are:
In the ‘Young Adult’s Book of the year’ category, the shortlisted books include:
Books competing in the ‘Best Text’ Category comprise:
The ‘Best Illustration’ Category has nominated four books, including:
The ‘Best Production’ Category includes:
Winners of the award – one of the most important and prestigious recognitions for children’s literature in the Arab world – will be announced during the opening ceremony of the 35th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) on 2 November 2016.
The value of the award is distributed as follows: the ‘Children’s Book of the Year’ is valued at AED 300,000 to be distributed equally between the publisher, author and illustrators; the ‘Young Adult Book of the Year’ is worth AED 200,000 to be distributed equally between the author and publisher; the ‘Best Text,’ ‘Best Illustration’ and ‘Best Production’ categories are worth AED 100,000 each. In addition, AED 200,000 from the Award is dedicated to organising series of workshops to build Arab youth capacities in writing and illustration, with the aim of identifying and honing the skills of a new generation in the field of children’s literature.