UNICEF trains 70 Northern youths on child education advocacy
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with the National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education (NMEC) have mobilized about 70 Nigerian youths from 12 states in the northern region alongside Federal Capital Territory for intensive training on advocacy for child education for national development.
Also co-sponsored is the Department for International Development (GFID); a United Kingdom government department for administering overseas aid.
The four-day event tagged ‘Mobilizing Nigeria’s youths for increased access to safe, quality education for all especially girls’ which ended on Thursday in Kano was attended by selected youth representatives from Adamawa, Kano, Niger, Sokoto and Kebbi states. Others are Zamfara, Bauchi, Kaduna, Gombe, Katsina, Adamawa, Plateau and Bayelsa states.
UNICEF’s Education Specialist, Mrs. Azuka Menkiti while presenting the objectives of the workshop added that the organisation is worried about the future of the society with the number of out-of-school children, hence the unique initiatives which among others include youth engagement and advocacy, Cash Transfer Programme presently operating in some states.
Other resource persons are Dr. Geoffrey Njoku; UNICEF Communication Specialist, Dr. Noel Ihebuzor, Awwal Nasir, Prof. Mustapha Hussein Ismaii; Director, Centre for Human Rights in Islam, and several others.
The workshop while extensively examining the predicaments alongside ways for translating the right to education to reality identified abject poverty, early marriage prevalent in the north, teenage pregnancy, gender-based violence, poor infrastructures, relevance and quality of teachers as hindrances militating against the right to education in the country.
Prominent amongst identified solutions at the workshop include use of advocacy, incentives and social safety net interventions, providing role models and hiring more female competent teachers.