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This 23-year-old Nigerian is creating a digital collection of African stories for children in different languages

August 21, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Akiddie, a web-based platform, features stories for children about African culture.

Lagos, Nigeria (CNN)When Dominic Onyekachi set out to read his 6-year-old niece a story, he did not anticipate that the simple task would lead him to create a digital collection of African stories.

Onyekachi told CNN that he wanted her to read books that reflect her culture, so he took it upon himself to write stories for her.

And that's when I really thought about writing more books and putting them in a place where many more children can access them," he said.

The 23-year-old said he realized the unavailability of children's books reflecting the continent was a much bigger problem after visiting Balogun market in Lagos, Nigeria's commercial center.

Many of the Africa-related books he found at the market were for advanced readers in secondary school, he said.

In May, with help from two friends, Fanan and Tolulope, Onyekachi launched Akiddie, a web-based platform providing access to African storybooks for children like his niece.

Akiddie features storybooks based on African history and characters for children in different languages.

Onyekachi who wrote some of the stories on Akiddie said a lot of the themes revolve around gender equality, innovation and financial literacy.

In "The flying girl of Rano," one of the books on the digital platform, the lead character, Ummi, discovers how to make a glider (a fixed-wing airplane).

Onyekachi said he wrote the story to portray parts of the Hausa culture and to inspire young girls to become self-fulfilling.

Many of the stories have their lessons and themes, all of them to share African culture while inspiring children," he explained.

According to Onyekachi, beginner stories are for children who are just starting out reading and intermediate is for those who are already comfortable reading.

The plan, Onyekachi said, is to keep creating and sharing more stories to reach more children in other parts of Africa.

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