A Ghanaian author by name Akua Amankwah was adjudged the overall winner of Worldreader ‘inspire Us’ writing competition in West Africa.
She received a cash price of $2000.00 for her immense contribution to literary discourse aimed at empowering and elevating the status of women and girls in the sub-region.
Other finalists and authors who were honoured included Udechuku Promise, Chukwudumebi Onoh, Onis Sampson, Ruby Goka and Sandy Om’Iniabohs Iguede.
The rest were Ifeoluwa Watson, George Benard Shaw, Chijindu James- Ibe and Adaeze Ibechukw.They also received a publishing deal with other attractive prices.
Akua Amankwah on behalf of the winners thanked the organisers for recognising and rewarding literary works in West Africa.
She also asked girls to be curious for knowledge and should not allow social construct to become an impediment in their quest for success.
The Regional Director, Worldreader, West Africa, Mrs Ethel Sakitey on her part said the ‘inspire Us’ project stems from the motivation to encourage conversations about gender across the region, particularly using literature to also address the issue of gender inequality captured in the sustainable development goal 5.
She said the Worldreader ‘Inspire Us’ project which began in 2018 created a digital collection of 30 stories featuring Ghanaian and West African women, role models that focuses on engaging young women between the ages of 15 and 24.
She said it is also a platform to encourage conversations around gender norms and gender stereotypes with the goal of reaching 30,000 readers across Ghana and West Africa.
She lamented that ” ‘The Inspire Us’ collection explores women’s challenges, provides empowered female characters as role models,and inspires conversations about gender norms and how to change them.
Wordreader appreciated the efforts of Helen Gurley Brown Pussycat Foundation for supporting the project, through this partnership, we are able to support West African authors and bring empowering digital stories about women to readers.
Former second lady of Ghana Mrs. Matilda Amissah Arthur and the board chairperson of Worldreader in her speech said the award ceremony was a milestone and also very evocative platform that gives opportunity to young female writers.
She emphasized that the evolution of the project saying’World reader is pleased to have engaged with so many talented West African authors whose work comprises the 30 stories in the digital collection.
These stories will encourage conversations about gender across the region, benefitting thousands of young women’.
Kezia Agbenyega,the author and publisher Relations Manager, in an interview after the ceremony said as part of the objective of the project was to engage people in the literary world, literary organisations, book clubs which will lead to discussions and broader conversations around issues facing women in West Africa.
Mrs. Kezia noted that the ‘schools are quite controlled except those from the tertiary Institutions and since the stories are on mobile apps.
we rather opened it up to people beyond these borders, people in the literary world among others.she added.
Worldreader is a global nonprofit organization whose mission is to help the world read through increased accessibility to digital books.
The organisation provides students and their families with a free digital library available on tablets, e-readers, and mobile phones complemented by a suite of reading support programmes. Since 2010, more than 13 million people across 50 countries have read from the Worldreader digital library of thousands of local and International digital books.
The ceremony brought together the former second of Ghana H E Mrs. Matilda Amissah Arthur who doubles as the chair person of the organisation and other scholars from the education sector.
Source: Adwoa Safowaa Kantinpo