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Foundation launches emergency education programme for out-of-school children

By Mayowa Okekale, Abuja on 21/12/2017

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A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Aro Foundation, has commenced an emergency education programme for out-of-school children, mostly in the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps across the country.

Managing Director, Aro group, Aham Rochas, said the Emergency Education Programme (EEP) is targeted at IDP children, who as a result of insurgency were forced out of school.

He spoke yesterday, during an interview with selected journalists in Abuja.

According to him, the pilot programme, which kick-started at the Karmajiji IDP Camp, Abuja, in September 2017, will run for a period of six months.

Aham Rochas said: “I feel that I will not be where I am today without education and it is in my view that this initiative does not discriminate. If you have education, all of a sudden opportunities are available to you, but without that you don’t have the ability. We felt it was necessary to start with the primary education to secondary level because foundation is key. I can trace back my successes to my primary foundation.

“This is our pilot programme. The EEP looks at places that are in distress, places that there is war, disasters or tragedy, about three months ago we had considered going to Benue but we were unable to make it.”

The philanthropist further explained that the intensive intervention will better equip the children with basic knowledge, needed to fit into conventional school system.

He quickly pointed out that the EEP is transitional as children at secondary school level will be fixed into schools upon completion of the mandatory common entrance examinations.

This, he assured will solely, be supported by the foundation.

His words: “It is not our aim that after six months we would leave the children, we would love to stay as long as possible but there is constraint because we had analysis and we said in six months we cancel, if it is six months of an intensive programme, how much can we help people to achieve results so we can be able to go elsewhere.

“I am more hopeful about the future even after the six months programme ends, because the children I have seen, they are kids who extremely determined to learn, they are not forced to come. After the six months programme, our plan is to towards the last two months, the ones who are at the secondary school level, we try to put them in certain schools. It is a transitional thing and even the primary schools, we are trying to look at schools nearby that are really good and then push them in and maybe do something like a bulk payment for the number of students so we are not just leaving them, even with what I have seen in the last three months I am very impressed.”

While stressing the importance of education to economic development, Aham Rochas stated that the programme will be replicated in other camps in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

He noted that although majority of children under the programme are from regions where the Almajiri system and early marriage is encouraged, measures have been put in place to change their orientations.

Consequently, he urged Federal Government (FG) as well as State governments to support such initiatives to address education deficits in the country.

“I think that it is something that in the nearest future, the Federal government and state governments should look at. We are in a society that is not prosperous but to get to that point, I think we do need education where every child will be educated. “The benefits might not come now but it has to be a sacrifice made by everybody, it will not come in the next one year but in the next 20 to 30 years, that is when we would start seeing the benefits.

“So but in our small way with the Aro Foundation one of our long time goals is to join the Rochas Foundation and open free primary schools. It is our hope that we get to cut down the number, it is a lot of people that are out of school,” he added.


Source News Express

Posted 21/12/2017 8:57:04 PM





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