CANADIAN ETHNIC MEDIA ASSOCIATION

Voices of Canada

Rainbow Caterpillar Bookstore launches award for children’s writing in mother languages in conjunction with CEMA

January 26, 2015

Toronto, September 6, 2011 – Rainbow Caterpillar is proud to launch the Rainbow Caterpillar Award for Writing for Children to support writers who want to write in their mother languages. The Award will be given to the best story written by a Canadian citizen or resident in a language other than French or English.

“By encouraging writers to write in their mother language, we want to help create a vibrant literary production for children in foreign languages, but with a uniquely Canadian perspective,” says Happie Testa, co-owner of Rainbow Caterpillar Bookstore. Submissions are due on October 6 and the guildelines are available online at www.rainbowcaterpillar.ca or CLICK ME. The best story will be recognized with the Rainbow Caterpillar Award. There will also be special mentions for the best story in each language submitted at the discretion of the judging panel. All the stories that are recognized will be published in a book.

“We hope ultimately this award also helps parents pass their mother language on to their children born or raised in Canada,” says Hanoosh Abbasi, co-owner of Rainbow Caterpillar. “We feel that it is important for parents to have access to good books from their countries of origin, but also to put their ancestral culture in the context of our shared Canadian culture where many people speak more than one language on a daily basis.” The Award will be presented in conjunction with the Canadian Ethnic Media Association (CEMA) at the Association’s own 33rd Annual Awards Gala. CEMA is an organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of the value to Canada of the ethnic media in creating an understanding of Canada and Canadian citizenship, and the retention of cultural links with countries of origin; http://192.168.1.5/sterling/joseph/canadianethnicmedia.com Research shows that children who are fluent in two languages […] are better at problem-solving, demonstrate greater creativity and express more tolerant attitudes toward others(1). According to Census data, more than 20%, (6 million) of Canadian residents are allophones and speak a language other than French and English at home.

About Rainbow Caterpillar Bookstore

Rainbow Caterpillar Bookstore sells children’s books in a number of languages from around the world to meet the needs of Canadian parents who want to teach their children their own mother tongues and raise them in a home language other than English and French. It is to support them that Rainbow Caterpillar already offers nearly 100 titles in Italian, Spanish, Gujarati, Farsi, Arabic and Chinese and more languages are added on request of parents. The products range from old-fashioned fairy tale books to interactive talking books, books with CDs, DVDs and even games that make it fun and easy to keep home languages alive without focusing on direct teaching, but on learning by living. (1) Genesee, F., Early Dual Language Learning, Zero to Three, September 2008, p. 17

For more information call: Happie Testa – 647-975-8800 or e-mail: happie@rainbowcaterpillar.ca