By Kasie Abone

Mothers play unique roles in the family. They are the burden bearers. From conception through all of life’s journeys mothers have been there. They love, care, protect and clear the mess. For these reasons and many more, the global community sets aside two days in the year – third Sunday of lent which comes up every March (UK and Anglicans) and second Sunday of May (US and Catholics) – to honour and celebrate mothers as well as thank them for the enormous sacrifices they make raising their children.

The day is used to shower love, gratitude and appreciation to mothers for their love and sacrifice in building their homes. The day is marked by special church services, such acts of kindness as giving of gifts to mothers and general merry making. Evang. Ken Nwodika says that Mother’s Day is a date one has to look into one’s life, adding, ‘see what your mother has done in your life and show her love.’

While the Anglican Communion, Church of England and some others join the age old tradition of UK and Ireland since the 16th century of celebrating Mothering Sunday every fourth Sunday in Lent, many other countries including the Catholic Church follow the US and celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday in May.

Mothering Sunday was originally a day set aside to honour Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ. During such celebrations, children who work far away from their homes are required to visit their ‘mother’ or local churches to reunite with their families and share happy moments with their mothers. With the spread of Christianity throughout Europe in the 16th century, the scope of celebrations to an occasion of appreciating mothers and thereby firmly putting Mothering Sunday on the global calendar.

In Nigeria, Mother’s Day has become a very important day in our annual events calendar making it one of the most celebrated after Christmas and Easter.

The day has also become a day to celebrate some outstanding mothers who have distinguished themselves in the service of God and humanity. One of such outstanding women honoured by her church, St. James Anglican Church,Abagana in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State on Mothers’ Day was 79 year old Madam Comfort Ify Okonkwo. The vicar’s wife, who is also the women leader of the church, Mrs. Obioma Ezedinobi explained that Madam Okonkwo was overwhelmingly endorsed by the church because of her selfless service to the community. She said that even in retirement, Madam Okonkwo who is a midwife and Senior Health Extension Worker still attends to women and children most of the time free of all charges. In addition, she has shown uncommon commitment to the things of God irrespective of her age.

The occasion also served the dual purpose of raising fund for the church’s building and growth. Activities on the day included drama, bible quiz, carol, fund raising, dancing and singing completion among many other activities.

Across Nigeria, children used the occasion to shower their mothers with gifts in demonstration of how much they are valued. Husbands also gave their wives treats in different kinds of ways in the spirit of the day.

Women and children-centric brand owners also engaged in different activities to bond with Nigerian mothers on their day.

One of such brands that has bonded with mothers from generation to generation is Peak milk. To make the day particularly special, Peak milk launched a television commercial tagged “Mmama Oyoyo.

The commercial starred artistes like Yemi Alade, Inyanya, Selebobo, Olamide and Tekno. According to Senior Brand Manager, Peak Milk, Miss Oluwaseyi Ayesa, the commercial was informed by the need to celebrate mothers who are central to the family.

She said: “We came up with this new song for our brand’s television campaign as a way of making the society appreciate mothers and what mothers do in the lives individuals and nations.”

The brand took a step further in celebrating mothers by introducing into the market a special limited edition packs for its products emblazoned with affectionate and emotive words like “Love You”, “Thank You” and “Sweet Mother”. With the innovative packages Peak Milk is set to delight mothers with special milk treat that offers them nutritious alternative gift offering even as they continue to take care of their families.

Like mothers, Peak milk has been there for generations to generation caring for the nutritional needs of Nigerian families.

From 1954, when the first consignment of Peak full cream evaporated milk arrived in Nigeria from Holland, by itinerant traders, Peak has always catered for the nutritional needs from one generation of Nigerian families to another generation.

Two elements in Peak’s pack, the twin palm trees and the mountain attest to Peak are clear symbolism of Peak milk’s positing as the brand for the family.

Positioned as the brand that provides nutritional needs for family growth, energy and strength, like mothers from generation to generation, Peak milk has always been there even as it has advanced its formulation advanced to cater for various categories of Nigerian consumers.

Entry Still Open for Promasidor Quill Awards

Entry for 2016 edition of Promasidor Quill Awards is still open. The Quill Awards is a platform through which professionalism and excellence are rewarded in journalism profession in Nigeria. Prospective applicants have up to April 14, 2016 to submit their entries, according to the organisers.

Seven categories will be contested for. They include Brand Advocate of the Year, Best CSR and Industry Report of the Year, Best Photo Story of the Year, Best Report on Children and Nutrition, Education Reporter of the Year, Future Writer of the Year, and Best Online Reporter of the Year.

Published works between May 1, 2015 and April 14, 2016 are eligible to be submitted. More details can be obtained from the following website: http://quillawards.promasidor-ng.com.