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07 April 2011
Oxford University Press (OUP) Pakistan is committed to furthering the cause of education and learning among the disadvantaged communities in the country. The recent floods in Pakistan have destroyed many schools, depriving children of basic education. With the beginning of the reconstruction phase OUP Pakistan is supporting the rehabilitation efforts by contributing more than 300,000 copies of especially developed storybooks for children in three languages, Sindhi, Urdu and English. These books were distributed to the children in the flood affected areas through UNICEF’s Temporary Learning Centres (TLC), operating throughout Sindh.
The books were presented at a formal ceremony held at the TLC in Thatta. Speaking on the occasion, Ameena Saiyid, Managing Director, OUP Pakistan, said that the devastating floods in Pakistan have not only taken a tragic toll of life and property, they have also weakened the educational system. Deeply concerned about the situation, she added that OUP Pakistan has decided to contribute towards redressing it by contributing these books. She further pointed out each book has been colourfully illustrated and has activities to keep readers engaged even after they have finished reading the story. Also present at the book donation ceremony were Asif Qureshi, EDO Education, Thatta; Azhar Adil, Deputy Programme Manager, Reform Support Unit, Government of Sindh; Neil Tomkins, Managing Director, International Division, OUP UK; and Andro Shilakadze, Chief Field Officer, UNICEF Sindh, all of whom also spoke on the occasion.
A part of this event was an interactive storytelling session for the children of the TLC, conducted by Zara Mumtaz, an experienced teacher and author of primary level school books. The eminent poet, Fahmida Riaz, also read out the stories in Sindhi.