Sultan Al Qasimi inaugurates the 15th edition of Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival

09:18 PM | 1 May, 2024
 Sultan Al Qasimi inaugurates the 15th edition of Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival

SHARJAH - The 15th edition of the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival (SCRF 2024) was inaugurated on Wednesday by His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.

Organised by the Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), the festival is themed ‘Once Upon a Hero’ and will run until May 12 at the Expo Centre Sharjah. The festival's official opening was marked by the warm welcome of Sheikh Sultan Bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Deputy Ruler of Sharjah and Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, Chairperson of SBA, to the Ruler of Sharjah.

 The event was attended by a distinguished gathering of dignitaries, including Sheikh Salem Bin Abdulrahman Al Qasimi, Chairman of the Sharjah Ruler's Office, Sheikh Faisal Bin Saud Al Qasimi, Director of the Sharjah International Airport Authority, Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Butti Al Hamed, Chairman of the UAE National Media Office, as well as several heads and directors of government departments and institutions, intellectuals, authors, and media representatives of  Sharjah graces the diverse SCRF pavilions.

 A highlight of the opening was the ribbon-cutting ceremony, followed by a musical performance by a group from Sharjah, who sang in praise of His Highness. During his tour of SCRF,  Sheikh Sultan witnessed a selection of 186 Arab and foreign publishers from 20 countries, which will host more than 1,500 cultural, artistic, and edutainment activities led by 265 guests from 25 countries, including prominent writers, artists, publishers, and illustrators.

During the tour, His Highness graced the pavilions of the Sharjah Private Education Authority, the Emirates Publishers Association, the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, and the UAE Board on Books for Young People, where he was briefed on their major cultural and educational activities that promote reading among children. His Highness also received details on strategies, programmes, and publications as he visited the pavilions of the House of Wisdom, Rubu' Qarn for Creating Future Leaders and Innovators, the Sharjah Social Services Department, and Sharjah Public Libraries.

To complete the tour, Sheikh Sultan visited the pavilions of the Department of Culture, Menassah Distribution Company, Mohammed Bin Rashid Library, Kalimat Group, and the Sharjah Broadcasting Authority, where he was briefed on their cultural efforts to support books, writers, and publishing.

Recognition of achievements

The Ruler of Sharjah presented honours to the Sharjah Children's Reading Festival Award winners and the Sharjah Children's Book Illustration Award. Kyoung mi Ahn from South Korea secured first place, Juan Carlos Palomino from Mexico in second place and Daniela Stamatiadi from Greece in third. Sheikh Sultan also recognised the winners of three encouragement prizes: Montserrat Batet Creixell from Spain, Santiago Solís from Mexico, and Mitra Abdollahi from Iran.

Furthermore, Sheikh Sultan acknowledged winners of the Sharjah Children's Book Award across various categories, each prize valued at Dhs20,000. Among them, Author Maitha Al Khayyat from the UAE clinched the award for her book “I Will Hunt My Breakfast,” illustrated by Gustavo Aimar and published by Kalimat Group in the Children’s Book in Arabic (ages 4 to 12) category. The Young Adults’ Book in Arabic (ages 13 to 17) category went to Dr Tariq Al Bakri from Lebanon for "The Buried Secret," illustrated by Fadi Fadel and published by Kalimat Group, receiving the award on his behalf by Manal Mahjoub, editor of Kalimat Group; In contrast, the International Children’s Book (ages 7 to 13) category was awarded to Julia Johnson for the title "Aisha’s Pearl," published by ELF Publishing.

Sheikh Sultan also recognised the winner of the Sharjah Audio Book Award, Author Lina Mustafa Al Zebaq from Syria, for her book “My Grandmother's Hug” published by Al Zebaq Publishing; additionally, to honour distinguished works facilitating visually impaired individuals' access to knowledge and their integration into society the award of Books for Visually Impaired Children Award was presented to Brigadier General Dr Muhammad Khamis Al Othmani from the UAE for his book "Seven Sanabel," published by Sharjah Police Science Academy.

Promotion of reading and cultural enrichment

This festival edition emphasises reading as a fundamental tool for shaping a brighter future for children and nurturing a generation that values its transformative and developmental potential in society. It fosters creative thinking and innovation through events led by esteemed writers, illustrators, and publishers who share their knowledge, works, and experiences.

Cultural agenda and activities

The festival, which hosts 265 guests, offers many workshops for children on topics such as sustainability, fashion, crafts, and music. It also boasts 12 performances, including theatre shows and roaming performances by 19 participants from 12 countries.

Furthermore, the cultural programme includes various panel discussions focusing on developing children's communication skills, with 70 guests from 25 countries participating. Throughout the festival, the Poetry Knight competition will encourage children and young adults to recite Arabic poetry engagingly, featuring three categories: primary school students (grades 1 to 4), middle school students (grades 5 to 8), and high school students (grades 9 to 12).

Daily Pakistan Global Web Desk


US Dollar, Euro, Pound, Dirham, Riyal Rate in Pakistan Today Open Market Rates - 15 July 2024

Pakistani rupee rates against US Dollar and other currencies on July 15, 2024 (Monday) in open market.

USD to PKR Rate Today

US dollar was being quoted at 279.8 for buying and 280.75 for selling. Euro's buying rate moves up to 301.25 and selling rate is 303.15.

British Pound rate is 355.15 for buying, and 358.65 for selling. UAE Dirham AED was at 76.5 and Saudi Riyal lowered to 73.65.

Currency Rates Today

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 08:00 AM)       
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 279.8 280.75
Euro EUR 301.25 303.15
UK Pound Sterling GBP 355.15 358.65
U.A.E Dirham AED 76.5 77.25
Saudi Riyal SAR 73.65 74.37
Australian Dollar AUD 184.55 186.35
Bahrain Dinar BHD 741 749
Canadian Dollar CAD 203.75 205.75
China Yuan CNY 38.35 38.75
Danish Krone DKK 40.05 40.45
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.7 36.05
Indian Rupee INR 3.33 3.43
Japanese Yen JPY 1.91 1.99
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 908.25 917.35
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 58.95 59.75
New Zealand Dollar NZD 169.24 171.24
Norwegians Krone NOK 26.04 26.34
Omani Riyal OMR 722.87 730.89
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.39 77.09
Singapore Dollar SGD 202 204
Swedish Korona SEK 26.5 26.8
Swiss Franc CHF 309.15 311.65
Thai Bhat THB 7.5 7.65


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