The Little Hands Project promotes and supports the development of children’s literature in Africa. It is inspired by the understanding that the way to a child’s heart and mind is through a story.

The project was formed as The Little Hands Trust to motivate and nurture reading and writing among African children and their care-givers.

Its core understanding is that children of all ages become inspired and creative when they have meaningful, enjoyable and interesting reading materials.

The Little Hands Project supports the development and use of children’s literature in South Africa and other parts of Africa in African languages as well as English, French and Portuguese.

Its aims include:

  • To support initiatives that promote reading for enjoyment.
  • To mentor African literary artists, including writers, illustrators and editors, to produce creative, suitable and appropriate children’s storybooks for children of various ages with a focus on early childhood (ages 0 to 9 years).
  • To collaborate with African publishers to increase and sustain publication of children’s books in African languages.
  • To initiate and support translations of stories between African languages, from African languages to ex-colonial languages and from ex-colonial languages to African languages.
  • To help to orientate and educate adults in the importance and significance of reading to and with children.

Little Hands Books for Babies

Four sets of board books available in all 11 official languages of South Africa, and German. They are specially designed to promote and nurture book talk and reading from early childhood. These box sets from The Little Hands Trust and Jacana Media are beautifully illustrated, tough and endurable, giving babies, toddlers and their caregivers lots to talk and think about on their path to imaginative and play – filled learning.

Download a guide to using these books here and to order them, contact Jacana.

16 little books for Little Hands

A pan-African set of books for children aged 0-6 written by authors from across the continent. They are available in the official languages of the African Union (Arabic, English, French, Kiswahili, Portuguese) and 15 other African languages (Afrikaans, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Siswati, isiNdebele, Sesotho, Sepedi, Setswana, Tshivenda, Xitsonga, Twi, Amharic, Cinyanja, Kinyarwanda and Mandingo).

To find out more about the availability of rights for these books, or for more information about them, please contact us. Find Listen! Masimamele! on iTunes and Google play English / Xhosa

The 16 books are:

  • Listen!
  • Little and big
  • Nice and clean
  • Orange

  • Raeez writes
  • Riddles
  • Six little beetles
  • Titilope’s silly game

  • Two!
  • When it rains
  • Where’s Daddy?
  • Zebra and Crocodile


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