Sultan Al Qasimi opens Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival

SHARJAH, H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, on Wednesday opened the 10th edition of the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival, SCRF 2018, at the Expo Centre Sharjah.

Organised by the Sharjah Book Authority, SBA, the festival themed “Your Future Just a Book Away” has seen the participation of 134 publishers from 18 Arab and foreign countries and 286 authors, poets and literary guests hailing from 121 countries.

Running from 18th to 28th April, the event will host a line-up of 2,600 cultural and literary events and activities to enrich and entertain all ages, books and literary materials.

Sheikh Sultan toured SCRF’s exhibition halls and the stands of a number of local, Arab and international publishing houses and organisations, where he was acquainted with their publications of printed and digital books, as well as learning materials.

The Ruler of Sharjah also visited the “Future Machine” exhibition, which encompasses live visual shows offering children insights into the new digital age, as well as models and replicas that run on artificial intelligence and robot functioning, allowing visitors the opportunity to explore the latest technologies.

During his tour, he viewed the seventh edition of the Sharjah Exhibition for Children’s Books Illustrations, featuring 355 artworks by 104 illustrators from 32 countries. The UAE is topping the ranks in terms of participation, with 12 Emirati illustrators, while 29 others are from Arab countries and 67 from the rest of the world. He also met some illustrators and commended their influential role in increasing children’s interest in reading.

Sheikh Sultan then honoured the winners of the exhibition awards, namely illustrator Rasa Jansiawiskit from Lithuania who won the first prize, Yang Park from South Korea who ranked second, while the third prize was awarded to illustrator Mariana Pedraza from Mexico. The three incentive prizes went to illustrators Claudia Melinka Elance Ituri from Bolivia, Matthias Dobell from Germany, and Reza Dalond from Iran.

The Arabic Young Adult Book Award, which targets children aged 13 to 17 years, was given to Dr. Ibrahim Shalabi for his book “Wasim Tours”, while the International Children’s Book Award was secured by Michelle Zilkoski.

He also honoured the winners of the SCRF Awards 2018, including author Nahed Al Shawwa, who won the Best Arabic Children’s Book for the age group 4 to 12 years, for her book “One Dream or Two,” published by Noon Books. The Arabic Young Adult Book Award went to author Sonia Al Nimr for her book “Thunderbird,” published by Tamer Institute for Community Education.

The International Children’s Book Award was secured by writer Mariam Saqr Al Qasimi for her title “Where the Letters Disappeared?” published by Medad Publishing and Distribution.

The Sharjah Police Science Academy was awarded the Sharjah Children’s Book Award for visually impaired children.

Source: Emirates News Agency