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Home NEWS Events FHL hosts 2012 Asian Festival of Children’s Content press launch in Manila

FHL hosts 2012 Asian Festival of Children’s Content press launch in Manila

The Manila press launch of the 2012 Asian Festival of Children’s Content (AFCC) was held at the Filipinas Heritage Library on April 20. Writers, illustrators, and publishers of children’s content joined local media representatives at the launch.

Also present at the event were officials from the National Book Development Board (NBDB) of the Philippines and National Book Development Council of Singapore (NBDCS).

Keynoting the launch was NBDB Executive Director Andrea Pasion-Flores, who stressed the importance of pushing the Asian story globally. She cited the development of Asia’s publishing industry, despite the global recession, as proof of its power and potential for further growth.

She also introduced the event’s main speaker, AFCC Director and NBDCS Executive Director Rama Ramachandran, who introduced the AFCC as a meeting of minds where people who have content meet people who can do something with that content.

“It’s unfortunate,” he said, “that even within Asia we don’t know our best writers of children’s literature.” Thus, the AFCC is an opportunity to bring everyone together—writers, illustrators, publishers, distributors, and consumers of not just children’s literature, but also children’s content, in general. Parents and teachers are also encouraged to join the festival’s talks and forums.

Rama Ramachandran, children’s book writer and NBDB Chair Neni Sta. Romana Cruz, NBDB Executive Director Andrea Pasion-Flores,
FHL Director Maritoni Ortigas, and FHL Manager for External Communities Ciela Cayton

The weeklong event will be held from May 25 to 30 at The Arts House, a multi-disciplinary art center in Singapore.

In addition to talks, panel discussions, workshops, and special events regularly held during the AFCC, Ramachandran announced that this year’s festival would highlight Asian talents by showcasing children’s content and the publishing scene of countries in Asia, starting with the Philippines. Thus, big names in Philippine children’s content production will be featured in this year’s AFCC.

Through a panel discussion dubbed “Trajectories and Themes in Children’s Literature from the Philippines,” award-winning children’s book author Russell Molina and illustrator Jomike Tejido will discuss various trends in the local publishing industry.

Meanwhile, literature blogger and newspaper columnist Blooey Singson ( will join the panel “The Art & Science of Writing Book Reviews: Online vs Print.” Teacher and young adult literature blogger Tarie Sabido ( and children’s book author and NBDB Chair Neni Sta. Romana Cruz, will also speak during the festival.

Nila Mata of Vibal Publishing, NBDB Chair Neni Sta. Romana Cruz, and NBCS Festival Manager Kenneth Quek

For her part, AFCC Program Director Dr. Myra Garces-Bascal, a Filipino who now lives with her family in Singapore, will handle several talks during the festival’s Preschool and Primary Teachers’ Congress.

The AFCC, an annual event organized by the National Book Development Council and the Arts House of Singapore, seeks to promote the production, distribution, and consumption of Asian children’s content worldwide. Hundreds of participants from Asia and across the globe are expected to attend the literary festival.

For more information please visit the AFCC’s official website:, e-mail, or call +65 6848 8292