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International Literacy Day
By S Mukhtar
"Uncle; International Literacy Day…when?"

"Dear; 8 September, as every year, since 1966 when UNESCO celebrated its first International Literacy Day."

"But the Day designated why?"

"Dear, our world's one in every five adults, means some 781 million adults, are still not literate - two-thirds of them are women; 60.7 million children don't go to school and many more attend irregularly or drop out. UNESCO's Global Monitoring Report on Education for All (2006) identifies the countries with the lowest literacy rates: Burkina Faso (12.8%), Niger (14.4%), and Mali (19%); it also says that South and West Asia has the lowest regional adult literacy rate (58.6%), followed by sub-Saharan Africa (59.7%), and the Arab States (62.7%). The figures clearly show a connection between illiteracy and poverty and between illiteracy and prejudice against women. Yes, it was to fight this tragedy that designated was the Day."

"Designated by?"

"The Day and the date of the Day 8 September both were declared by UNESCO itself on 17 November 1965."

"Uncle, please, themes of the Day?"

"Yes, some here: Reading the past, writing the future; Literacy and Health; Literacy and Empowerment; Literacy and Peace; and this year's, Literacy in a Digital World."

"Uncle, writers particularly must partake in the Day."

"Sure, they must, they do. Many eminent writers through the Writers for Literacy Initiative are greatly supporting UNESCO. And with them have proudly joined various companies and charity organizations such as National Institute for Literacy, Global Development Research Centre, Rotary International, etc. To best encourage all partaking individuals, institutions, organizations, governments, governmental agencies, and NGOs promoting innovative approaches and achieving impressing results are given excellent Prizes."

"What Prizes, Uncle say?"

"Two I must. First: UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy. This Prize was established in 2005, in honour of the great Chinese scholar Confucius, with the support of Government of the People's Republic of China. The Prize offers two awards of US $20,000 each, a medal, a diploma, and a study visit to literacy project sites in China."

"And second Prize, please?"

"Second Prize is: UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize. Established in 1989 by Government of the Republic of Korea, it was to honour the outstanding contribution made to literacy by Sejong the Great - he created the Korean alphabet known as Hangul. The Prize offers a sum of US $20,000, a silver medal, and a certificate."

"Great Uncle, I too want a prize."

"What prize?"

"Prize of your prayer…that I may get both Confucius Prize and Sejong Prize!"

"May God will! And live long!"


News Updated at : Thursday, September 7, 2017
 
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