This year’s initiative focuses on the ‘Year of Zayed 2018’ by introducing to the public to the most significant stages of the Founding Father’s life
Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 13 March 2018: Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), the Emirate’s dedicated entity for culture, arts and heritage, is organising the third edition of its ‘Reading Box’ initiative through Dubai Public Library under ‘A generation reads. A civilisation rises.’ theme. The initiative will run from 14th to 27th March 2018 at Dubai Festival City Mall and is part of the Authority’s mission to establish healthy reading habits across UAE society.
The ‘Reading Box’ includes various activities that will promote a reading culture among the community, including creative labs that will discuss important cultural issues, address challenges in a modern way, and use unconventional solutions to reach creative outcomes. This year’s edition will also feature a creative lab run by children for the first time. The morning activities are focused on children and school students, whereas the evening programmes are open to the general public, including adults and children who visit the mall throughout the day.
The general public will be able to participate in cultural programmes including dialogues, seminars, discussions, meetings, book signings and poetry evenings, which will be available in both Arabic and English. Additionally, young authors will have the opportunity to present, discuss and sign their new works and publications, with the attendance of cultural figures from abroad.
Saeed Al Nabouda, Acting Director General of the Dubai Culture, said: “This year’s initiative is particularly important as it is being launched in line with the UAE’s ‘Month of Reading’. This reflects our support of the National Reading Strategy 2026 and also falls within the framework of the UAE’s Year of Zayed 2018’ celebrations. We are keen to promote the ‘Reading Box’ with special programmes that will discuss the life of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the UAE’s Founding Father. During the initiative, we will be introducing visitors and especially the younger generation to the most prominent stages of his life, and showing a collection of books and references that document his achievements and the sacrifices he made to support the nation and the citizen. This year, we have also launched new activities highlighting the vision and mission of making Dubai a platform for diverse cultural exchange, as well as regional and global creativity. The ‘Reading Box’ is aligned with our mission to enrich Dubai’s cultural landscape by creating a sustainable cultural environment while also preserving the UAE’s heritage and nurturing local talent to promote cultural diversity and unity.”
Dr. Hessa bin Masood, Director of Dubai Public Library, added: “Demonstrating the success of this initiative, we are proud to launch the third edition of the ‘Reading Box’, as we always strive to deliver quality content to the public. We will organise creative labs including interactive sessions, activities and workshops for children; seminars with the participation of thought leaders and academics; book signing ceremonies attended by leading authors; as well as a host of poetry evenings and other events that complement the goals of the initiative.”
The activities will be held from 10am to 10pm at the Dubai Festival City Mall, which is a leading shopping and entertainment destination for all members of the community. The activities within the programme will contribute to instilling a love of reading among all members of the community and especially young people. As the ‘Reading Box’ coincides with many events such as Emirati Children’s Day, International Day of Happiness and Mother’s Day, the programmes will be tailored to these occasions, providing a community platform that highlight the values of UAE society.
The ‘Reading Box’ initiative has won the Arab Library and Information Award in the “Best Project” category that aims to spread the habit of reading across the community, at the 28th Annual Conference, which was held in Cairo last year.
Dubai Culture aims to enhance Dubai’s cultural scene and draw attention to the Emirate’s rich heritage with a variety of initiatives that take place throughout the year. The Authority’s mandate is to build bridges of constructive dialogue between different civilisations and cultures through enriching initiatives that benefit the Emirate’s citizens, residents and visitors.
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About Dubai Culture & Arts Authority:
Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) was launched on 8th March 2008 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, in order to drive the growth of the city’s artistic and cultural landscape. The Authority has grown to play a major role in the realisation of the Dubai Plan 2021, highlighting Dubai as a thriving capital for creative industries and further embedding the Emirate’s credentials as a city of happy, creative and empowered people.
As part of its mandate, Dubai Culture has several initiatives that are focused on strengthening both the historic and modern cultural fabric of Dubai, including Dubai Art Season, the city’s premier umbrella arts initiative which kicks off with Emirates Airline Festival of Literature and encompasses Art Week including Art Dubai, Design Days Dubai, and SIKKA Art Fair – an annual event aimed at promoting Emirati and local artists in the UAE and the wider GCC region. The Authority also manages the Dubai International Arabic Calligraphy Exhibition, which showcases an evocative blend of artworks to celebrate the myriad facets of Arabic calligraphy; Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre, an annual festival that fosters the art of theatre in the UAE; and Dubai Next, a dynamic platform that aims to showcase the Emirate’s cultural ethos and vibrant creative scene on the global stage.
The Authority’s other key initiatives include Creatopia (www.creatopia.ae), which is the nation’s first government empowered virtual community for cultural and creative communities in Dubai, and was launched to encourage the exchange of ideas and the refinement of skills while ensuring ease of doing business within the creative industry.
Dubai Culture also plays a leading role in supporting the UAE National Strategy for Reading 2016-2026, in particular by undertaking a major refurbishment of all Dubai Public Library branches to transform them into state-of-art cultural and artistic hubs. Across all of its branches, Dubai Public Library provides children and young adults with a range of educational and entertaining activities that encourage the use of its facilities. The ‘Our Summer is Filled with Culture & Arts Programme’ is a Dubai Public Library initiative which complements the UAE National Reading Strategy with activities that are open to all age groups and revolve around four key themes: happiness, reading, family and the future.
In addition to its wide range of initiatives, the Authority manages over 16 heritage sites across the Emirate, and is a key government stakeholder in the development of the Dubai Historical District. As the custodian of Dubai’s museum sector, Dubai Culture officially launched Etihad Museum in December 2016. The museum serves as a platform that encourages cultural exchange and connects Emirati youth with their culture and history. As part of the Authority’s mandate to support Dubai’s vision of becoming the focal point for diverse cultural exchange, both regionally and globally, the museums play a vital role in preserving Emirati heritage.