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Children’s Africana Book Award

The Children’s Africana Book Awards (CABA) are presented annually to the authors and illustrators of the best children’s and young adult books on Africa published or republished in the United States. Africa Access and the Outreach Council of the African Studies Association (ASA) created CABA in 1991 to encourage the publication and use of accurate, balanced children’s materials about Africa.

CABA has three major objectives (1) to encourage the publication of children’s and young adult books that contribute to a better understanding of African societies and issues, (2) to recognize literary excellence, and (3) to acknowledge the research achievements of outstanding authors and illustrators.

The awards are presented in three categories: Young Children, Older Readers and New Adult (books marketed to adults but suitable for mature teens).


Nominated books must meet the following criteria:

  1. Books should be suitable for children and young adults ages 4-18.
  2. A significant portion of the book’s content should be about Africa (books with content primarily about African Americans and other parts of the African Diaspora are not eligible).
  3. Books must be copyrighted in the year preceding the awards ceremony.
  4. Books must be available in hardback or paperback for purchase in the U.S, and published in English.
  5. Bi-lingual books that include English are eligible. Translations are eligible in the year first published in English.


Email AfricaAccess@aol.com for information on mailing titles.


Nominations should be submitted no later than December 31st of the year the book is published.

Nominations for awards are made directly by publishers, who may nominate as many separate titles for a given year’s competition as they desire. Nominations should be submitted as soon as possible but no later than December 31st of the year the book is published. Each book is read and evaluated by African Studies and Children’s Literature scholars. Reviews of nominated titles are posted on Africa Access Review.

The Children’s Africana Book Awards are given under the auspices of the Outreach Council of the African Studies Association, a non-profit corporation founded in 1957 and open to all persons and institutions interested in African affairs. The Outreach Council aims to share and disseminate resources about Africa; exchanges experiences on best practices in conducting outreach activities; serves as the ASA membership in educating the public about Africa; and facilitates the exchange of ideas, information and research findings on Africa.

To Order Award Seals:

Award Seals are available to award-winning publishers. The cost for adhesive award seals depends on the quantity ordered. Over 50, the seals cost $0.20 each; 50 or fewer seals cost $0.50 each. A free electronic version of the seal is available to award-winning publishers. Email AfricaAccess@aol.com.

See a full list of Past Winners, CABA events, and history online.