The United Bank of Africa (UBA) Foundation friday through its ‘Each One, Teach One Initiatives’ trained secondary and primary school children on vocational skills and foreign language necessary for them to be self-reliant in future.
The initiative which is in its second year, is a UBA community service that presents staff and members of the organisation all across the continent, an opportunity to give a little of their time and skills to their communities.
This year, in continuation of the programme which took place at the Onikan Youth Centre, Lagos, the bank focused on training secondary and primary school children on creating wealth aimed at changing the poverty narratives in Nigeria.
The Chief Executive Officer, UBA Foundation, Mrs. Bola Atta said, ‘Each One, Teach One’ is an initiative of the UBA Foundation, “for us, it’s about giving back to our communities. This is happening in every one of our subsidiaries in Africa, as well across Nigeria.
“It is for staff and it came about from interest shown by our staff to support what we do as an organisation in giving back to society. So with ‘Each One, Teach One’, every staff member on their own time would dedicate a little bit of time to teach at least one person their skill.
“Hence, if you are a good cook, you can go and teach the kids how to cook. Today, we have staff teaching the kids how to defend themselves when necessary with Teckwando, staff who can sow are also here teaching them how to sow, we have those teaching them how to speak different languages, how to make beads, bake, and all kind of life skills.
“These are skills that can serve as an alternative source of income for them and their families in future , even as they go to school and as they get other paid employment. So this is the day of giving back and it’s the best time of the year to do it, as it’s the season of giving.
“We gave a lot throughout the year, but for you to give in a very seamless way that’s the idea. This kind of giving comes from the heart. Unlike just donating money, sometimes you have to take your time, skills, and interact with these children, and you are teaching them something that would have a lot of impact on them, it’s more impactful. This is what it’s all about. So each person should teach at least one person. And I encourage people to do it on a regular basis.”
“Even the children here should learn to teach other children and pass knowledge. Simultaneous we are doing this in 20 African countries as we speak. And all over the states in Nigeria, we have some people in schools as we speak, in youth centres , orphanages, and those places they know people would need them. It’s just about giving back.”
The children were grouped into different groups and trained on several skills ranging from bead making, baking, to oil fermentation, social media marketing, savings skills, tailoring, basics of several international languages and others.
“We had children from special schools of those living with down syndrome, orphanage homes, and regular schools primary and secondary schools from the most interior parts of Lagos all well represented at the programme , as staff took turns to take them through pieces of training in several vocations,” she added.
Speaking with THISDAY, a Student of Eko Akete Senior Grammar School, Lagos Island, Moses Akele, lauded the foundation for the initiatives.
“I have learnt a lot here today. I am very grateful to UBA foundation, they have taught me how to make coconut oil, and also market it on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I would go back to school and teach my friends and even those at home.”
Also speaking with THISDAY, a student of Standard High Mark College, Mushin, Ibukun Anoderin said she learnt how to make several jewelries using beads; a thing she had always longed to learn.
“I have always begged by elder sister to teach me how to make different fashion accessories with beads but she is always busy and never around to teach me. But today, I learnt it here, and it’s not as difficult as I taught it was its just about being creative. I am very happy I was selected by my school to join other students coming here.
“Most importantly, I am grateful to UBA Foundation for teaching us these things very early in life. I would further develop myself in this by practicing more when I get home, and would also try to teach someone too. Because as we were also taught, we learn more when we teach others our skills.”
The children were not only trained in different skills by the facilitators but likewise taught the importance of savings and how to save, especially with the UBA *919# USSD code at their disposal.