One of the great things about working with the Golden Baobab is that, two weeks in, I already feel like part of the team. The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly, and it is a privilege to work with people so dedicated to such an important goal. The mission of the Golden Baobab, as we often say, is to ensure that in ten years you can walk into any bookstore around the world and find quality children’s books by African authors. An important factor in the Golden Baobab’s role in this endeavor is to make sure that we have a clear, legitimate identity, so the prize gets recognized on a global scale. This is where Audrey and I, the communications ladies, come in. So far, I’ve been working on researching for the company and doing some design work, which has been pretty fun so far.
Today we went to the Kathy Knowles Children’s Library to do some filming for a short documentary on Debbie’s story. The library is situated in Osu, an old neighborhood in central Accra, and is quite adorable. As you enter, you see a small triangular garden and are greeted by Auntie Joanna, a cheerful motherly figure. On the side, there is an area decorated with short tree stumps arranged as a type of amphitheater for story hour. The library was started by Kathy Knowles, a Canadian lady who lived in Osu and would allow the neighborhood children to read the children’s books she owned. Today it functions as a quaint community center, with story hours certain days of the week, and free computer classes for kids held in the building across the courtyard. Browsing the shelves, it was obvious how Debbie realized the need for the Golden Baobab based on her experiences here as a kid. Most of the titles I, as a Westerner, recognized- Hardy Boys, Babysitters Club, Princess Diaries- and while there was a big section on the books that Kathy Knowles published, there were not many other books by African authors.
Here are some photos from the library: