We have a wonderful collaboration with Pelargos that helps bring Greek and Amharic versions of some our favorite books to kids in Greece. Below is a translation, thank you Michael Angelidis, from a recent article in Greece about this initiative. For those that read Greek, here is the original
Did you know that Andromeda, the well-known princess from Greek Mythology – who is also a constellation – is black and originally from Ethiopia? Do you know that there are over 30 species of mammals – such as the Nyala, insects – such as some butterflies, and birds – such as the yellow-headed parrot, which are endemic/ live exclusively in Ethiopia. Ethiopia is home to many There are many cheetahs living there…not only four-legged, but also the self-proclaimed cheetahs of Ethiopia, some of the fastest people on the planet! All Ethiopians – have their own – special – calendar: eight years behind ours, with 13 months in each year, and the day starts at dawn, not midnight!
The above is what one reads in the 100+ stories of the Ready Set Go Books series for children, written and illustrated by Ethiopians or people who have experienced the nature and culture of Ethiopia up close. While they have been available for a few years, as bilingual (English-Ethiopian language) through Amazon, we can now also find them in Greece, in Greek translation and in Amharic (the official language of Ethiopia), thus maintaining their bilingual character.
This new, Greek-Ethiopian series of children’s books is the product of a collaboration between the non-profit organizations Open Hearts Big Dreams (OHBD) and the Association of Friends of the Mixed Family “Stork”. Selected books from the Pelargos group, such as “Andromeda: The Princess of Ethiopia”, The Lakes of the Great Rift Valley, “Only in Ethiopia” etc., are available from OHBD for translation into Greek. Afterwards, the Pelargos team creates and prints – voluntarily and non-profitably – the new edition in a Greek printing house. The proceeds from the sales here in Greece, support the actions to strengthen literacy in Ethiopia, i.e., they are available through the OHBD Organization for printing new books and donating them to schools and libraries in Ethiopia.
The Greek-Ethiopian character of many Pelargos families was the inspiration and motivation for this action in Greece. But every child of Ethiopian origin living in our country (and vice versa!), will have the right, the opportunity and the satisfaction to read books about the culture, manners, customs and nature of the country in which she was born in, both in her own language and in the language of the country in which she grows up. In addition, these books are addressed to any family that wants to contribute to the work of OHBD, but also to get to know in a simple way, and often through authentic illustrations, as Ethiopian painters have donated their works to many of the books, nature and culture of Ethiopia, the country where the oldest human in the history of our entire planet, Lucy, was discovered.
You will not find the Greek production of these books in bookstores. As much as we wish for the support of the effort from a publishing house or sponsor, this action, as very new, is currently based on the voluntary effort of the members of Pelargos. The books are produced and printed serially and to order, while they are distributed against a fee that covers their printing in Greece, as well as copies in Ethiopia. For orders, contact Pelargos: https://syllogospelargos.com/contact/
If you have an innovation idea to bring more of our books to your community, please reach out.