The world's first publishing network for digital storybooks in mother-tongue languages. Through literacy, we defend against exploitation. 

The Problem

Globally, there is a severe shortage of mother-tongue reading books at the early grade levels. As a result, 40% of the worlds population is not learning in a language they speak or understand and over 250 children leave school without even basic literacy, constraining their potential. The shortage of mother tongue books is fueling the global literacy crisis. Furthermore, without locally created content, children do not see themselves represented in the pages of their books and lose confidence as a result.

The Solution

At NABU.ORG, we offer training for writers and illustrators to facilitate the creation of high quality reading books that are culturally contextualized and representative, filling an unmet need in communities across the world. In 2017 alone, we ran three writer workshops in Haiti, resulting in 260 original Haitian Kreyol storybooks for children and the training of over 50 authors and illustrators. The program has proved hugely successful, and has created positive by-effects in communities, empowering local creators and engaging children as they see themselves and their communities represented in the books they read. We distribute these original storybooks on the NABU.ORG reading app, an app we have built specifically for low-bandwidth and for use on low-cost devices. Our app is currently the fastest growing reading app in Rwanda, and is expanding reach in Haiti. Harnessing technology, we ensure the stories created through our global publishing network reach the readers who need them most.

Stage of Development

  • Early Stage
  • Established Prototype
  • Scaling
  • Other

Organization to Receive Funds

NABU.ORG. We believe to read is to rise above what pushes humanity down; we have a momentous opportunity now to work together to ensure literacy is available for all. Should the project win, we will use the funds to run a writer workshop in Rwanda, training 25 local authors and illustrators on children's book production. The result will be 150 children's storybooks in Kinyarwanda that are leveled according to the curriculum. We will include the digital storybooks on our reading app, to reach at least 10,000 children in Rwanda.

This project was nominated by: