The closing ceremony of ‘Aao Likhein Kahani’ (ALK), an initiative by Seed Ventures and FK Squared, was held at a local hotel today in Karachi.

Sania Saeed, Chief Guest for the event spoke about the importance of reading and writing for children. She also emphasized on how initiatives like Aao Likhein Kahani can prove to be beneficial for developing the creative abilities of children. The closing ceremony was organized to commemorate 15 young story writers who were shortlisted to participate in this event from among 30 candidates. The top 5 stories have been developed into audio-visual stories and the children were awarded with exciting educational prizes. The remaining 25 children had their work published by FK Squared in a digital book.

Aao Likhein Kahani has been designed to develop the story writing and critical thinking abilities of children in Pakistan. The third cycle was delivered digitally where children from across Pakistan participated in the competition. From a pool of 1200 applications, 30 children were shortlisted through an online essay writing competition and were inducted into a 5-day online boot camp where they were trained by experienced creative writing trainers on how to develop stories and illustrations.

A ten-part speaker series by experts from the world of literature, content development and illustration were developed on the skill of writing and the importance of reading. These videos are available on the Shield, SEED Ventures, and FK Squared digital assets.

Osama Qassim, Executive Director Shield Corporation Limited said: “The purpose to partner with Seed Ventures and FK Squared for this project was to encourage and educate children in building their creative story writing skills. These children have created wonderful stories and illustrations, and it has been an absolute pleasure to see their artistic work.”

Shaista Ayesha, CEO and Director of SEED Ventures said, “The initiatives undertaken in children’s portfolio at SEED Ventures are meant to develop critical thinking abilities in children. We have conducted previous two cycles at a limited scale but this year with the help of Shield we were able to do it nationally at a larger scale.”

Farhad Karamally, Director FK Squared said, “The digital development of the stories into a digital book and audio-visual stories has been a great experience. We are looking forward to producing more digital content that is accessible by children across Pakistan.

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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