Parents, as well as children, have a lot to enjoy today as the fourth edition of the first and only children’s book festival-the Akada Children’s Book Festival (ACBF) in Nigeria holds in Lagos today.
This year’s edition of the book festival-themed ‘Together Again’ is starting at 8 am. The festival will be hosted at the UpBeat Centre, Admiralty Road, in Lekki Phase 1 axis of Lagos.
Speaking on the festival in Lagos on Wednesday, the convener, Mrs Olubunmi Aboderin-Talabi, said this year’s edition will be the second physical festival since its inception in 2019 as the two last editions were held virtually.
Aboderin-Talabi, who is also the Chairman of the Association of Children’s Authors and Illustrators of Nigeria, said the event will feature book reading, arts, and crafts, a fun exhibition, a pop-up library, a dramatization version of a children’s book, and workshops for children, parents, and professionals in the writing field.
“Akada Children’s Book Festival is the showcase of children’s books written by African authors or books around the world written for diverse children. The gathering was first held in 2019,” she said.
“So this year’s will the fourth edition and over two years it’s been held online because of the pandemic, social distancing. So since 2019, this is the first time the festival will be back physically.
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“The 2022 edition will feature author-led book reading, book chats, professional workshops for illustrators, and insightful sessions for parents and teachers.”
After getting 139 and 50 submissions for writing and illustration competitions respectively, the winners will also be announced at the event.
“We also have the announcement of the winners of the writing and illustration competition. So each year, we run a competition for children under 16. The aim is to get them to develop their writing skills and push them to know the capacity they have,” Talabi added.
“We have over 130 submissions for the writing competition and almost 50 submissions for the illustration competition where there can only be three winners each.”
The name ‘Akada’ is the Yoruba translation for a lover of literacy and books.
All activities are free except the workshops which cost N2,000.
She called on parents to buy age-appropriate books for their children and read to them at a very early age.
She said such a move will go a long way in improving their vocabulary and communication skills.