ASTANA – UN Office in Kazakhstan jointly with United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and UN Women presented the book “Shugylaly ertegiler” (shining stories) on June 6. The book tells inspiring stories for children aged 5-12 years in the Kazakh language and raises such topics as equality, family values, environmental protection, and refugee problems.
The presentation dedicated to International Children’s Day took place near the capital shopping and entertainment center “Mega Silkway”.
Michaela Friberg-Storey, United Nations Resident Coordinator for Kazakhstan, opened the event.
“I am so glad to present this book in the beautiful Kazakh language. This project is a result of the collaboration of several UN agencies. We want to engage in this as the UN because education is key to achieving goals and sustainable development,” she said.
Friberg-Storey emphasized the importance of the right to education for all children, pointing out that reading is the best way to learn. She also clarified that the project aims to promote reading in Kazakh language.
“This book teaches to be a stronger person, to take care of the environment, and to be supportive of friends,” said Friberg-Storey.
Gaziza Moldakulova, National Programme Officer at UNFPA in Kazakhstan, spoke about the UNFPA mission and how the book corresponds to it.
“We strive to give the opportunity to all people, including kids, adults, and people with special needs to live a full life reaching their full potential,” she said. The book promotes equality for all society members, a healthy lifestyle, family values, and a careful attitude to nature.
Representative of UN Women in Kazakhstan Maria Dotsentko noted that the book also promotes gender equality and teaches children to follow their dreams.
Meiram Rakhimbekov, legal protection specialist of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), mentioned the anticipated World Refugee Day on June 20.
“Some fairy tales are about those who had to abandon their homes due to different reasons such as war and natural disaster. Some stories about those who lost access to main socio-economic benefits. I believe this book will help to understand them better,” said Rakhimbekov.
The book is available for sale in a Kazakshstani bookstore chain and online for free, while the audio version is available in Qonzhyq mobile app.