The 2022 IBBY Congress gathers children’s book industry activists in Putrajaya

The 2022 IBBY Congress gathers children’s book industry activists in Putrajaya

HIGHLIGHTING the theme “The Power of Stories” or the impact brought by a story, the 38th congress of the International Book Board for Young People (IBBY) which will take place in Putrajaya next month promises interesting partnerships for industry participants.

Scheduled from Sept 5 to 8, Malaysia is also the first country in Southeast Asia to host the biennial congress of the 80-nation organization.

Thus said Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the 38th IBBY Congress Datuk Ahmad Redza Ahmad Khairuddin, it is very appropriate that the opportunity to meet with international industry experts this time be fully utilized by local participants.

“The experts present are divided into three categories, namely writers, illustrators and translators.

“They are experts in their respective fields and award winners and celebrity writers in the children’s storybook industry,” he shared with Bernama recently.


Commenting further, Ahmad Redza who is also the President of IBBY Malaysia said the congress theme this time is considered special and is reflected by the members of the organization through the interest they have shown so far towards the congress.

“At this congress, we want to explore the similarities in children’s stories across countries, cultures and education systems.

“We will compare and share stories and discuss the lessons we get from those stories and then how the stories help us understand each other’s roles, identities, approaches and challenges.

“We also hope to explore how these stories can be a tool that builds our beliefs and behavior to maintain, change, establish relationships and help understand our world,” he said.

According to him, so far about 400 participants from 10 countries have confirmed their presence with a line-up of speakers who will participate in the plenary session including from the United States, Lebanon, Iran, France, South Korea and Canada.

Commenting further, the small theme for each session is related to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) including health and well-being; quality education; gender equality; reduce inequality; as well as peace, justice and strong institutions.


Asked whether the program was able to raise awareness about the importance of exposing children to story books from an early age, Ahmad Redza said that was indeed one of IBBY’s aims to raise public awareness.

In fact, he said, indirectly telling stories is also a form of education for small children.

“I believe that raising children is not only about educating them but also shaping them, giving them confidence, understanding and fostering empathy in them,” he said.

Taking the example of the situation in Palestine, Ahmad Redza said that children in Malaysia do not experience the experiences of their peers in the region due to the country’s peaceful and harmonious situation.

“Children in Palestine face crisis and trauma almost every day, so it is certain that their stories are also different (and very valuable) with most of them being about survival. The values ​​in this story are very important to share and learn,” he explained.

At the same time, he believes that emphasis should be placed on fostering a love of reading and making the concept of reading story books to children a common practice among children in Malaysia.

“We should cultivate the right way by reading more story books with our children, not just asking them to read textbooks.

“There are many good story books produced by local and global writers that can be shared and how those books can shape a better future for Malaysian children,” he said.


Throughout the congress, book lovers can also visit book fairs that are open to the public on certain days.

According to Ahmad Redza, most of the books are collections that have won awards, including the most prestigious in the industry – the Hans Christian Andersen Award.

“Books published in this country are also on display,” he added.

For more information about the congress, those interested can visit the website or follow the congress through the official Facebook page

source — BERNAMA

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