Ever since the Association of Nigerian Author (ANA) A-Book-A-Child nationwide project was flagged off in Benue during the association’s 36th International Convention which held in Makurdi, Benue State in October, 2017, pleasing testimonies have been ricocheting from all corners across the country.
A stakeholder in the promotion of literature in the country, who prefers anonymity, told this reporter that the impact of the project is being felt across the country.
According to him, the programme is a success because it has been garnering endorsements from literary enthusiasts, parents and the children alike.
Initially, when the grand for the ANA/Yusuf Ali Nationwide Literary Awareness Campaign was secured in 2017, the President of the association, Malam Denja Abdulahi’s administration decided to channel the fund towards enhancing children’s literary horizon, hence the grant was used to publish three children’s literature titles under the Nigerian Writers Series(NWS).
The beneficiary authors are: Salamatu Sule (Oma the Drummer Queen), Chinyere Obi-Obasi (The Loyal Queen) and Kabiru Abdullahi (The Golden Girl of Galma), who have exhibited a great deal of creative ingenuity in their presentation.
It could also be recalled that last year, ANA organised a manuscript submission competition for possible children-centred books that would be published to power the project. 13 manuscripts were received, which were passed to the series editors, who are experts in children’s literature.
Three manuscripts were adjudged publishable, which we have published under the Nigerian Writers Series (NWS) of ANA through ANA’s publishing outfit, NWS Publishers.
In his remark, the President explained the concept behind ANA’s A-Book -A-Child nationwide project was to get a literarily impact into every school-going Nigerian child from the ages of 5 – 12.
“The books were published with the fund received from Yusuf Ali as part of his annual grant to the association. We are presently distributing the books to bookshop outlets nationwide but our major design is to distribute nationwide through our chapters,” he said.
He therefore expressed his appreciation to Yusuf Ali for the philanthropic role he has been playing towards uplifting literature and literary culture across the country.
The president, therefore, sought the cooperation of corporate bodies and well-meaning individuals to get at least a copy of the book into the hands of the given targeted school-going children.
“Also, government agencies regulating and facilitating the introduction of good books into the school curricula are also our targets. We are doing this because we feel as writers, we have a great role to play in making our children get access to well-written books that will inspire them to be good citizens of this country.”