MEDIA RELEASE: International exhibition of folktales and fairy tales makes West Coast debut

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Vancouver, BC – December 9 – Read Me a Story, a multicultural showcase of more than 1,200 stories from 120 countries formally opened today at the Roundhouse Community Centre.

Until December 16, 2015, families from across the Lower Mainland will have a unique opportunity to discover the world’s rich cultural diversity and read a wide range folktales and fairy tales on display at the third international showing of the Read Me a Story Exhibition.

Organized by the Soka Gakkai International Association of Canada (SGI Canada) in partnership with the Roundhouse Community Centre, the Read Me a Story Exhibition features more than 20 “panorama picture books” – large murals of original artwork more than two metres tall created by an international group of artists that illustrate folktales and fairy tales from around the world.

“The exhibition was created to give people a wonderful opportunity to learn about the culture of others through their folktales and fairy tales,” said Joely Collins, a representative of the Soka Gakkai International Association of Canada (SGI Canada). “We hope that as you walk through the exhibit, look at the murals and read the stories, you will appreciate the unique elements within different cultures, and also see the many things we all have in common.”

More than 100 volunteers have come together from across the Lower Mainland to support the Exhibition. These volunteers are supporting visitors and classroom groups that have reserved guided tours of the exhibit (a limited number of tours are still available. For details, visit the “For Educators” page at

In a message for the opening of the exhibition, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson said, “Vancouver’s strong multicultural fabric showcases the vibrancy of our city and provides citizens with the opportunity to engage in a variety of educational and cultural events. The Read Me a Story exhibition, featuring 1,200 fairytales and folktales from 120 countries, is an exciting addition to literacy in our community. By promoting literacy, education, the exploration of new cultures and by celebrating Canadian multiculturalism, this exhibition will be a thought-provoking and entertaining event for families and youth across the city. I hope everyone has a wonderful time visiting the exhibition!”

On why the exhibition was created, Daisaku Ikeda, a prolific writer, and president of Soka Gakkai International, said, “Children possess the universe in their hearts. They have the ability to transform everything they see or hear into something precious. To our children, who are natural born poets, we want to be able to show the beauty of our world. We hope we might plant “seeds of goodness” in their hearts and provide them with spiritual nourishment so they can grow up fearless and carefree. This is our responsibility as adults. Children are the treasures of humanity and it is to them we entrust the future.”

On until December 16, 2015 at the Roundhouse Community Centre, the Read Me a Story Exhibition is a free, inclusive and family friendly exhibition that celebrates the world’s rich cultural diversity. It aims to: inspire empathy and understanding; arouse creativity, curiosity and imagination; and emphasize the importance of literacy for children and families. For more information, visit


Media Contact:

Joely Collins

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