On Friday 27 March, a conference on the promotion of reading was held in Sofia to mark the first edition of the Day of European Authors. The event was organised at the initiative of Marija Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education, and Youth.
The conference brought together representatives from the Ministries of Culture and Education of the Member States, public institutions and national NGOs, as well as organisations representing books and cultural sectors at European level. The event was attended by Gabriela Dul, coordinator of the Book Institute's Bookstart projects as part of the 'Small Book – Great Man' campaign.
The aim of the conference was primarily to share examples of good practice in the area of promoting reading among children (mainly in schools) and to establish cooperation in order to make reading a 'window on the world' for children and to ensure that future generations of Europeans read.
The conference discussed national strategies and challenges for the promotion of reading, international cooperation, with a focus on EU projects and resources, as well as pro-reading projects implemented in Bulgaria. In addition to panel discussions, workshops exploring access to books, the use of new technologies, and the promotion of reading in schools were held.
The Day of European Authors is a new initiative that aims to bring together the literature and education sectors to encourage Europeans to read and help them discover European literature and its linguistic and cultural diversity. Books and reading can help young readers cope with current social and personal challenges. This day is also an opportunity to highlight the importance of all the programmes and initiatives carried out in individual EU countries to promote reading.