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African Teen Writers Awards Receives Lifetime Sponsorship from Award-winning Tanzanian Writer Nahida Esmail

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African Teen Writers Awards Receives Lifetime Sponsorship from Award-winning Tanzanian Writer Nahida Esmail

Two winners in this year’s African Teen Writers Awards will receive $100 each. This is courtesy of a lifetime sponsorship commitment from award-winning Tanzanian writer Nahida Esmail. Speaking on the motivation for this sponsorship, Nahida Esmail says: “I want to help teenagers get recognition for their creative efforts. They are just as imaginative as adults, and we need to tell them to keep up the good work in all possible ways.” The awards target early teens between 13 to 16 years old. It is an initiative of Writers Space Foundation, publishers of Writers Space Africa (WSA), a multi-genre literary magazine, and PoeticAfrica, a quarterly trilingual poetry magazine featuring poems in English, Swahili, and French.

Winners of the African Teen Writers Awards will be announced later this year in Limbe, Cameroun, at the African Writers Conference, taking place from 2-6 November. Calls for submissions in Poetry and Prose began on 15 March and will end on 1 July followed by the announcement of a longlist in September. A shortlist of writers will be out in October. Writers Space Foundation believes in empowering and grooming young writers, motivating them to tell their own stories, and dispel false narratives about the continent.

The foundation is grateful to Nahida Esmail especially because she has contributed to the growth of literature on the African continent. Her five young adult novels, Living in the Shade, Lesslie the City Maasai, Detectives of Shangani, Aiming for the Summit, and Karafu: A Freed Slave Girl, have all received CODE’s Burt Award for African Literature. Nahida has published close to 30 books spanning children’s picture books and textbooks. She has been the chief judge of the Wakini Kuria prize for Children’s literature since its inception in 2019 and was a keynote speaker at the maiden edition of the African Writers conference in Abuja, Nigeria, in 2018.

A merit award recipient from Writers Space Africa, Nahida Esmail currently lives in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. She previously lived in London, Egypt, and Durban, South Africa. Nahida is a part-time writer and full-time mother of two girls and enjoys reading, cycling, mountain climbing, photography, and traveling. There is more about African writing at www.writersspace.net.

WSA Communications Team

Steve Ogah
Steve Ogah
Novelist, Poet & Essayist, Steve's the author of Barack Obama's Logic & the novels; Khaki Boy & Freedom Campus. Steve is a UEFA accredited Sports Media Rep.