Gangtok: Bookaroo, the Festival of Children’s Literature, is all set to make its debut in the Himalayan state of Sikkim on June 28 and 29. Organised in collaboration with the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts (IGNCA), North East Regional Centre, Guwahati, the two-day event will be held at the Taktse International School in Gangtok.
Organised by Delhi-based Bookaroo Trust, Bookaroo is the first literary festival of its kind in the country. The organisers have invited 25-30 schools from Sikkim to witness the festival.
Bookaroo will be travelling with 18 speakers from all over India to Gangtok, who will be joined by four speakers from Sikkim. The speakers, who are storytellers, authors, illustrators and poets, will be conducting 59 sessions on storytelling, drama, workshop and art & craft for children in the age group of 4 to 14 years.
“Teachers and students of Taktse International School (TIS) have made a ‘pilgrimage’ every November to Delhi, to attend Bookaroo, since 2009. The impact of this event on Taktse students and teachers has been tremendous. They have returned more confident in public speaking, asking questions, making conversation with adults and more importantly, inspired to read more and write their own books,” said TIS director Sonam Paljor Denjongpa while addressing the media to announce the festival on Wednesday.
“With Bookaroo coming to Gangtok, our children will have more exposure to literature. We are grateful to the organisers for this opportunity that they are bringing for the children in the hills. We hope that Bookaroo will inspire us to do something similar in future,” added Denjongpa.
“Stories from Sikkim will have a special place in Bookaroo this year. We are thankful to IGNCA NERC, Guwahati for collaborating with Bookaroo for the project. One of the main objectives of IGNCA is to promote and popularise education among children, through culture. The organisers have come together to fulfill this objective through the festival. Taktse, which has kindly agreed to offer us resources, has been a major factor in Bookaroo’s decision to come to Gangtok,” said Bookaroo festival director Venkatesh M.
Bookaroo will feature Reshma Thapa Gurung, author of The Very Wiggly Tooth; Chewang Dorjee, a teacher of National Institute of Design Amaravati; and Team Tapestree for Gorgeous Gangtok from Sikkim.
The festival began in 2018 as a solo in New Delhi and has since travelled to 12 cities. In 2019-20, Bookaroo will travel to six other cities, most of which are new ones, informed Bookaroo festival director Swati Roy.