A wonderful welcome to our new Patron, Ana Maria Machado

Famous children's author and President of the Brazilian Academy of Letters, Ana Maria Machado is one of the most well loved and significant Brazilian children's writers and has written over one hundred books for children and adults, published in 17 countries.  

Renowned for successfully mixing social satire and fantasy, she was awarded the Hans Christian Andersen Award for her life's work, the most significant international prize for children's literature and in 1979 Ana Maria opened Malasartes, the first bookshop for children in Brazil.

 

Some of her most famours titles include Bisa Bia Bisa BelPalavra de Honra and Menina Bonita do laço de fitaAmong her works translated into English are Wolf Wanted and What a Party!

 

It is such an honour to welcome Ana Maria Machado as an ABC Trust Patron. Her stories are not only beautiful and loved by both young and old, but touch on key social issues and many of the challenges facing children today – the same children that ABC Trust supports in Brazil.

 

She is the perfect champion for our projects that uses reading and story-telling to help children living in traumatic situations to overcome their past, build their reading, writing and communication skills and ignites an excitement about learning and a different future.

We asked Ana Maria to tell us a little more about herself and why she has chosen to become an ABC Trust Patron:

“For nearly forty years I have dedicated myself to projects that encourage reading, which I consider a basic right of citizenship that should be respected and guaranteed from childhood… Reading is much more than a means of information or a way to convey, acquire and build knowledge . Reading helps you to think for yourself, to develop reasoning, to argue, to defend points of view, to refute others' ideas when necessary, to develop new perspectives.. Through reading we can literally live other lives besides our own, entering the thoughts, dreams, wishes and desires of the characters. In that way, we can understand others better and it is as if we live more than one life. This develops in us a greater tolerance for differences and a real respect for diversity, helping to build a more humane society and vote better without being easily fooled.”

 

What was your favourite book as a child?

“It’s hard to choose one book as a bookmark in childhood and adolescence. But overall, it was the work of the Children's Brazilian author Monteiro Lobato , mainly " Reinações of Narizinho" and "Memories of Emily". I was also very fond of Peter Pan, all the work of Mark Twain and "Treasure Island ". They all opened my horizons.”

 

How do children benefit from reading?

“I believe reading literature is essential to full citizenship, from childhood. It is the right of all human beings, heirs of a rich universal heritage consisting of books, stories and poems and that everyone should have access to them . More than this, it is a way to be able to live other lives imaginatively, put on the skin of others, to get along with other cultures, to understand differences, to push the limits of individual experience. It contributes to tolerance. Another important aspect is that narratives help to give order to what you live and give meaning to life - everyone has a right to that.”


Why have you chosen to help ABC Trust?

“Because I care about the education and well-being of Brazilian children, about their happiness, and I have been working for decades to bring them books. I believe ABC Trust also cares about them and we could join our efforts in trying to help them in the best way possible.”

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