To celebrate Indigenous Literacy Day (#ILF2017) tomorrow, the Indigenous Literacy Foundation is launching four new bilingual books largely written and illustrated by Indigenous students in regional and remote communities, across the country.
The Indigenous Literacy Foundation Community Literacy Projects program publishes books written by people in remote communities, some reflecting traditional legends and stories. Many of the 66 books published through this program so far are written by children, while others are parenting or educational books written in consultation with community elders. The majority of the Foundation's publications reflect up to 15 Indigenous languages.
This year, the release of four new books joins the library:
The Indigenous Literacy Foundation is holding an event in Sydney at the Opera House where Indigenous Literacy Foundation ambassadors Josh Pyke, Anita Heiss and Alison Lester will join elders and students from Yakanarra in WA, to launch their book, Yakanarra Song Book. This book celebrates 14 beautiful songs written in Walmajarri language.
Ambassadors Andy Griffiths and Jared Thomas will join students from the Tiwi Islands, at Federation Square to launch their book, Shallow in the Deep End, the tale of a water buffalo who thinks he is a pet dog. It was created with Jared Thomas and published by Scholastic Australia, and written and illustrated by Tiwi College Senior girls. Shallow in the Deep End is an Initiative which partners young Indigenous women with publishers and mentors.
Ambassadors Ann James and Gregg Dreise will join students from four remote communities, Tjuntjuntjara, Mt Margaret, Laverton and Menzies at the State Library of Western Australia to launch and perform I Open the Door, a collection of nine imaginative stories all that begin and end with opening a door. I Open the Door is written by children from the 2016 Spinifex Writing Camp; Jamal from Laverton; Shakira and Lori from Menzies; Daisy, Georgina and Jonas from Mt Margaret; Tarlisha and Adelle from Tjuntjuntjara; and Jemima and Emma from Fairbank Grammar School in Melbourne.
As part of the Brisbane Writer’s Festival, the Indigenous Literacy Foundation Patron, the Hon Quentin Bryce and Founder Suzy Wilson, will join students from some of Queensland’s most isolated communities at Angel’s Palace, to launch Two Ways Strong. The story is inspired by the writers' (the 'Deadly Mob' from Concordia Lutheran College) experience boarding at school.
"Jaz" is a young girl from Palm Island who goes to boarding school at 14 years old. Jaz has many challenges to face, not least having to speak English and make herself understood. Her fellow Indigenous students help to ease the way for her but ultimately it’s up to Jaz to make the most of what boarding school has to offer.
Indigenous Literacy Day is on Wednesday, 6 September.