The UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY) yesterday announced the launch of the third edition of the Eitsalat Prize for Arabic Children's Literature, on the sidelines of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF).
The AED1 million Prize is awarded each year to the best Arabic children's book, with 50 percent of the prize money going to the winning publisher, and the remaining 50 percent being divided between the author and illustrator as per the decision of the Jury, which comprises experts in the fields of children's literature and publishing of children's books This year's winner will be announced during the Sharjah International Book Fair in November 2011. Entry is open to Arab and international publishing houses that are dedicated to producing Arabic-language books for children up to 14 years of age.
UAEBBY President Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi said that the launch of the 2011 Eitsalat Prize for Arabic Children's Literature was scheduled to coincide with the cultural extravaganza accompanying ADIBF.
Speaking of the importance of the award, Shaeikha Bodour said, "The key aim of the Etisalat Prize is three-fold: to support and promote the children's book industry in the Arab world, to encourage creativity and innovation among publishers, authors, illustrators and professionals in the field of Arabic children's literature, motivating them to keep up with children's literature on the global stage, and to improve the overall quality of children's books, in terms of both form and content".
She underlined the important role played by UAEBBY, which has succeeded, through the Prize, in continuing to produce the highest quality literature, and to promote Arabic children's literature.
"We are proud of the remarkable development the Eitsalat Prize for Arabic Children's Literature has undergone over the past couple of years, and we pledge to ensure that it continues to develop over the years to come until Arabic children's literature enjoys the status it deserves," she added.
Sheikha Bodour referred to the transparency and high level of professionalism embraced by the Jury when selecting entries - something that has added significantly to the Prize's value, and serves as an incentive for participants to produce the best children's books. Jury selection is kept strictly confidential, and no members are named until a winner has been announced.
She also praised Etisalat's commitment to supporting children's books through sponsoring this prize, in line with the firm's leading role in development of the UAE and boosting humanitarian and cultural projects, which reflects its high level of community awareness and corporate social responsibility.
Abdul Aziz Taryam, Etisalat's General Manager: Northern Emirates, said that the Prize puts Etisalat's vision and commitment into action by promoting Arabic children's literature and culture, as well as laying a strong foundation of literary works and encouraging reading among youngsters.
In order to qualify for entry, books must comply with the 17 terms and conditions, which include: the book must be written in Arabic; must be original (not translated, quoted or reproduced); and must have been published within the past three years. The book may not have received any previous local, regional or international awards, and the content must not violate the values, traditions and customs of Arab communities. Entry is open to children's books that target the age group from 0 to 14 years, and each publishing house is entitled to nominate a maximum of three titles.
The UAE Board on Books for Young People
P.O. Box 5424, Sharjah, UAE
Tel.: +9716 5542111
Faz: +9716 5542345
More information here.