Jobs Events Advertise Newsletter

Andy Griffiths makes a splash at Indigenous Literacy Foundation’s 2024 Great Book Swap launch

Callan Morse -

Renowned children’s author Andy Griffiths made a splash at the Indigenous Literacy Foundation’s 2024 Great Book Swap launch, held at Sydney’s Sea Life Aquarium on Tuesday.

The event raises money for Indigenous Literacy Foundation’s (ILF) programs which assist remote Indigenous communities publish culturally relevant books.

At the launch, First Nations primary students from five Sydney schools had the opportunity to learn about and meet a dugong (or Marntuwunyini in Tiwi language), the marine mammal representative of one of four new Indigenous Language houses that schools will be allocated when they register for the 2024 Great Book Swap.

Griffiths, an ILF lifetime ambassador, spoke highly of of the Foundation’s initiative.

“The Great Book Swap is a really fun way to swap one of your preloved books for another book that (who knows?!) you might end up loving even more,” he said.

“And, even better, for the price of a gold coin you’ll be raising funds to ensure that kids in remote communities have the chance to fall in love with books and reading as well.”

The launch was hosted by the Sea Life Sydney Aquarium. (Image: Joseph Mayers)

The four new language houses are designed to engage students in a region of Australia, a First Nations Language, and an animal from that region. 

They include Marntuwunyini (dugong in Tiwi, Northern Territory), Yari (humpback whale in Yawuru, Western Australia), Girrganyi (brown falcon in Bunuba, Western Australia) and Bigibigi (pig in Kriol, Northern Territory).

The language houses are based on recently-published ILF texts Tiwi Seasons with Marius by Tiwi College with Shelley Ware and David Lawrence, Country Tells Us When by educators Tsheena Cooper, Mary Dunn, Dalisa Pigram-Ross and Sheree Ford, Winthali :Fire by Joe Ross and Stacey Bush and Moli det bigibigi| Molly the pig and recently released sequel Moli bin git stak: Molly Get Stuck by Karen Manbulloo.

ILF head of programs, Zoe Cassim, said the Great Book Swap is a great opportunity to raise money for the ILF and a means for readers to connect with each other. 

“Seeing people’s face light up when they start sharing how much they love a book, character or author, and why someone else may like it is so heartwarming,” Ms Cassim said.

The Great Book swap raises money for ILF's Indigenous literacy programs which provide culturally relevant books to Indigenous communities across Australia. (Image: Joseph Mayers)

“It becomes a shared experience, and that deep connection we so often miss out on.”

Schools and early learning centres who host a Great Book Swap and submit funds raised by 1 November 2024 will automatically win a virtual visit from ILF Lifetime Ambassador Andy Griffiths.

Further, those that host a swap and submit their funds by 30 June 2024 will automatically go in the draw to win the early bird prize; a book pack consisting of ten ILF titles.

In addition to schools and education facilities, ILF encourages corporates, organisations and social groups are also encouraged to host a Great Book Swap.

The charity says hosting a swap is a fantastic way to celebrate reading locally, learn more about Indigenous Languages and culture, while raising funds for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation.

This year, the ILF are aiming to raise $180,000 to gift 18,000 culturally relevant books to remote Indigenous communities across Australia.

   Related   

Broome-based publisher Magabala Books wins major gong at Australian Book Industry Awards
A Western Australian First Nations publishing company has picked up a top gong a...
Brendan Foster 10 May 2024
Author Alexis Wright wins Stella Prize for Praiseworthy
It wouldn't do Australians any harm to give their brains a workout by reading bi...
Liz Hobday 3 May 2024
"Because I Love Him" - New book an unflinching personal account of domestic violence
Proud Dunghutti woman and author Ashlee Donohue was subjected to relentless viol...
Brendan Foster 1 May 2024
New books tells harrowing story of forced adoption
It is estimated that 150,000 adoptions took place between 1950 and 1975 in Austr...
Dianne Bortoletto 30 Apr 2024

   Callan Morse   

Deaf Indigenous dancers still feel the beat after 27yrs
As a teenager, Patty Morris-Banjo learned her dance moves in front of a mirror....
Keira Jenkins 25 May 2024
Holmes hip-drop call 'annoys the crap' out of Payten
North Queensland coach Todd Payten is proudly from NSW but insists the decision...
Joe Gould 25 May 2024
No, French have not imposed martial law in New Caledonia
WHAT WAS CLAIMED Martial law has been declared in New Caledonia. OUR VERDICT...
Kate Atkinson 25 May 2024
Maroons star Holmes on report as Cowboys beat Tigers
North Queensland centre Valentine Holmes and Queensland face a nervous wait afte...
Joe Gould 25 May 2024