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Globe and NABU partner to improve PH student reading comprehension using native languages

Globe and NABU partner to improve PH student reading comprehension using native languages

Stories written in Cebuano, Ilocano, Bikolano, Hiligaynon, and Maranao accessible via the NABU mobile app

Reading is an essential skill for the 21st century, and a way to encourage it and improve comprehension is by making books available in languages that are understood by young readers.

To inspire more Filipinos to read and easily comprehend, the free-to-download tech-publishing app NABU: Multilingual Kids Books has released its first batch of regional language books for Filipino learners from diverse backgrounds.

Globe has partnered with NABU, the New York-based nonprofit focused on eradicating poverty through increased literacy and free access to mother tongue books through their proprietary app.

“We believe that everyone should have access to age-appropriate, culturally relevant, and accurate reading materials in their own language. This is an important step towards making literacy more accessible for everyone with the help of digital platforms such as NABU,” said Yoly Crisanto, Globe Group Chief Sustainability and Corporate Communications Officer.

This partnership is in line with Globe’s commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, including UN SDG No. 4 on the provision of quality education and UN SDG No. 17, which highlights the value of partnerships in achieving sustainable development goals.

The two organizations believe that confidence in children builds when they can read in their local language first, which induces comprehension. As a result, literacy levels increase allowing children the ability to expand their learning skills and rise to their full potential.

Literacy is a prerequisite for eradicating poverty. However, there is a dearth of local language books at the early grade levels, resulting in children leaving school without the ability to read. This renders them extremely vulnerable to social and economic exploitation.

Tanyella Allison, CEO of NABU, said: “We are honored to welcome all Filipinos on our global journey to create a culture of reading, and hope that our app and content will inspire children to get back into the habit of reading.”

NABU Philippines’ Country Manager Mauro Daez added: “With the release of our regional bilingual books, we want to bring back the fun, curiosity and creativity gained from reading to the major regions of the country. Whilst simultaneously, having parents and teachers discover new stories that can equally get them excited to read alongside the children. With hundreds of languages being spoken in the Philippines, this is our start to providing reading resources to those that may not be able to afford them.”

Since NABU’s launch in the Philippines last October, 50 regional language titles have been added within the app, including stories written in Cebuano, Ilocano, Bikolano, Hiligaynon and Maranao, and illustrated by local Filipino artists. These complement the currently available 100+ original stories developed by NABU, which are provided to children across the Philippines in partnership with Globe and the E. Zobel Foundation.

Among the titles available for free download on Android and iOS at www.nabu.org/download are Magturugang Habang Buhay (Brothers for Life) (Bicolano), So Alongan Ago So Olan (The Sun and the Moon)(Maranao), Layo ang Gakaabtan sa Gugma (Love Travels Further)(Cebuano), Mas Maayo kun Updanay ang Tanan (Better Together) (Hiligaynon), and Kabaelak Nga Aramiden (Dare to Try) (Ilokano).

Globe has always been a strong advocate of literacy and digital skills. It has the Globe eLibrary mobile app and website (globeelibrary.ph), which contain hundreds of classic English titles, age-appropriate storybooks, eLearning videos, and other resource materials that can be viewed online or downloaded for later use.

To learn more about Globe, visit https://www.globe.com.ph/. For further details about NABU, go to www.nabu.org or www.nabu.org/tl/philippines.

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