Saide’s African Storybook Initiative is one of twelve finalists in the Google Impact Challenge South Africa. Through public voting, four winners will be selected from the twelve finalists and will be awarded $250,000 which will be used to develop an app to make it easier to create and upload storybooks where connectivity is a challenge.
African Storybook was launched in 2015 to ensure that there are enough stories in local languages and reflecting local contexts for African children to learn to read fluently, and to learn to enjoy reading. The goal of the African Storybook is to improvement of the tragically low levels of literacy found in many countries on the continent.
Saide’s African Storybook Initiative uses a digital open licence publishing model to provide stories in a growing number of languages. In just of over two years, over 400 stories with nearly 2,000 translations in over 60 languages have been generated and published, and the site grows each month.
The storybook creation tool available on the African Storybook website, has resulted in over 5,000 openly licensed picture storybooks in more than 160 African languages. By the end of 2017, African Storybook has reached 43,820 educators and 940,226 children. And in 2018, over 80,000 storybooks have been downloaded per month and presumably read!
Saide’s African Storybook Initiative is an excellent example of how the use of openly licensed content can respond to a challenge which has faced African reading levels for decades. Please take a moment to VOTE for African Storybook Initiative before 25 November!