Indonesian women will read a series of illustrated e-books to local boys and girls in a bid to break stereotypes and promote girls’ empowerment.
The books were written in collaboration with Asian writers and illustrators as part of an Asia-wide collection known as the “Mighty Girls”, which features fictional and real-life stories, such as that of Indonesia’s first female journalist.
Another tells the story of an Indonesian girl in the tourist island of Bali who is a student by day and a superheroine by night, tackling social issues like plastic waste.
Around 800 women or reading ambassadors, will receive specialised training in the urban centres of Jakarta, Surabaya, and Bandung to read aloud with children and advocate for meaningful reading opportunities.
Sofie Dewayani, an Indonesian author who will be among the 800 reading ambassadors, said: “We don’t have a lot of books with strong female characters in Indonesia.
“This will help us break the stereotypes about Indonesian women. There should be no boundaries for a woman to pursue her dreams.”
Each reading ambassador will be connected to a classroom, community library, or community centre near her home where she will be able to conveniently read with children.
The reading intitiative is part of The Asia Foundation’s Let’s Read campaign.
Let’s Read, Asia’s free digital library for children, is a locally driven solution to book scarcity in Asia and brings together the power of technology with local authors, illustrators, publishers, and translators to dismantle barriers to accessing local language books.
The region-wide library of more than 2,300 books in over 20 languages and growing can be read without using a single piece of paper.
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com