Come read with your children

TOMORROW, in Johannesburg, the Miriam Tlali Reading and Book Club will encourage citizens to embrace the importance of reading for and with children.

TOMORROW, in Johannesburg, the Miriam Tlali Reading and Book Club will encourage citizens to embrace the importance of reading for and with children.

Established to honour veteran author Tlali, the club, which is a South African Literary Awards legacy project, will host two sessions. The theme is Free @ Last? - Libraries, Languages and Learning: Celebrating World Book Day and the 16th Anniversary of Freedom And Democracy.

Everyone is invited to the African Literature Bookshop on 191 Louis Botha Avenue (corner 8th Street), Orange Grove.

The first session is a kiddies' reading programme comprising reading and storytelling. Facilitators are dramatist and short-story teller Sindiswa Seakhoa and poet and short-story writer Marcia Tladi. It starts at 1pm and ends at 2pm.

Arguably, South Africa is suffering a dearth of black writers of children's literature, especially short stories.

Emerging author Fanta Jabbie, samples of whose work is published by Imisebe, is among the people who are filling that breach.

Jabbie has taken the Barbie phenomenon head-on with a proudly African punch. She has written A Tale of a Xhosa Princess, A Tale of a Zulu Princess, A Tale of a Sotho Princess, A Tale of a Pedi Princess, A Tale of a Swazi Princess and A Tale of a Tswana Princess.

The Miriam Tlali Reading and Book Club is calling for book donations. Books can be sent to 74 Mimosa Road, Randpark Ridge. For more information, call 011-791-3585.

In the second and main session, SAFM presenter Karabo Kgoleng will facilitate a panel discussion featuring Nobel Laureate Nadine Gordimer, Cuban ambassador Angel Villa and National Librarian John Tsebe in a session titled Celebrate, Freedom Day & World Book Day: Free @ last? Libraries, Language and Learning.

l The awards are a nation-building partnerships project of wRite Associates, Sowetan, Aggrey Klaaste Nation Building Foundation, Nutrend Publishers and Department of Arts and Culture.

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