Some 50 schoolchildren from the Reading and Literacy Association of Brunei (ReLA) enjoyed a book reading session organised by the High Commission of Canada in Brunei Darussalam with Radisson Hotel in conjunction with the Brunei December Festival 2022.
High Commissioner of Canada to Brunei Darussalam Ambra Dickie read several Canadian children’s books to the children.
The high commissioner said, “I love reading. I grew up in a small town in the province of British Columbia in Canada. There were only a few thousand people who lived in my town and only a few hundred at my school. We didn’t travel too much because my family didn’t have enough money for big, expensive trips. When we did travel, we drove in the family car and camped in tents. I didn’t get to explore many places and because there were so few people in my town, I didn’t get to meet that many people either. So I read books.”
“I read so many books that the small library in my town had to order more for me to read. I read every book for my age in the library. When there was a new book the librarian knew I might like, she would call me to come in so that I could borrow it before anyone else,” she added.
“Books took me to all sorts of places. They showed me the lives of people during wars, they took me to ancient Egypt where I could see the pyramids, they took me to live in the Roman Empire and to space to live on Mars, they took me to places in many towns and cities across the world and they showed me cultures I could never see otherwise.
“Books also made me smarter. They made it so that I could use bigger words, explain complex things, and write fancy papers for school. They taught me things that happened in the past and things that might happen in the future. They taught me about people who made important contributions to the world and they taught me what it was like to feel like the least important person in the world. ”
A colouring session for children enabled them to show their creative side and the work of arts. The high commissioner said, “Canada and Brunei both have the same focus on education and the aim is to increase literacy through reading. We are delighted to co-host this event with Radisson Hotel and hope such activities will encourage children to love reading.”
Meanwhile, Radisson Hotel General Manager Miriam Wolber said, “We are honoured to have this opportunity to collaborate with the Canadian High Commission in conjunction with the Brunei December Festival 2022. It is a wonderful initiative to interact and inspire young minds to inculcate the habit of reading.”