Snack Time: Commentary

Revolutionary Change is Upon Us!

deborah ahenkorahCrystal Jeanne of the Be Bold Show interviewed an up-and-coming entrepreneur of African stories for children, Deborah Ahenkorah. Ahenkorah started The Golden Baobab prize, taking the next leap into the creation and production of African stories for children. Generating from her college years, Ahenkorah realized that out of the thousands of books she came into contact with to send to Africa for children, there was only one that truly reflected an African child. Of this she states that children need to “read a book and be able to see things that relate to who they are.” Stemming from her realization she decided to create a prize where African citizens of all ages submit their unique short stories and a team of judges select the winners; one adult writer and one from the contributors younger than 18. Once chosen, the story is sent to a publisher, and the team at The Golden Baobab Prize works as an agent in pushing the story along to be distributed. In the first year of the prize, Ahenkorah received over 76 stories from 9 African countries. Through this prize, she is helping to aid in eliminating Chimamanda Adichie’s notion of the single story. Not only does this project dramatically change the education in Africa, it changes education all over the world. Through the prize, there is potential for children and adults to understand the stories of Africa through an African perspective. Ahenkorah’s “goal is to build an organization that will be the powerhouse for children’s literature” because “children read better when they have access to content that reflect {their} experiences.” Currently, writers outside of Africa create the majority of stories about Africa, both for children and adults. The general perspective of Africa is based on these falsified works, which even the children in Africa read. Thus, begs the question, what really are we learning of other cultures? Our stories are not equal to theirs, yet our framework is creating their stories. Ahenkorah has started a revolutionary project that will embed itself in all cultures and create real tales from genuine and various perspectives.

 

The Golden Baobab Prize project is in need of funding to continue creating stories. To contribute or learn more please visit the website.

Interview with Deborah Ahenkorah

Continue the discussion of African stories for children 

by Lauren Gee

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One thought on “Revolutionary Change is Upon Us!

  1. Pingback: Review of Chinua Achebe’s Chike and the River | The Playground Diaries

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