The UBA Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc yesterday joined the rest of the world to celebrate African children in this year’s edition of the International Day of the African Child.
June 16 every year, has been set aside by the United Nations as the International Day of the African Child to celebrate children in Africa as well as recognise the courage of students who marched for their rights to better education in Soweto South Africa.
The bank explained in a statement that as an institution that cares about the education and welfare of the African child, through its Foundation it marks the all-important event annually.
It revealed that due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the resultant lockdown on educational institutions, UBA Foundation was not able to visit schools and community centres as is its usual practice.
However, the Foundation held activities online, where students of secondary schools were afforded the opportunity to watch and listen to virtual mentoring and reading sessions.
During the virtual session, the Managing Director, UBA Foundation, Bola Atta, spoke to the students on various issues, ranging from financial literacy and the importance of imbibing good reading culture to nation building.
She also explained why UBA Foundation centres on three key pillars of Education, Empowerment and Environment, adding that the bank through its foundation, recognises the huge role that education and indeed a good reading culture has to play in the lives of the youth.
She said, “These days school children barely make out time to read and are easily distracted by the presence of electronic social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others; and to curb this declining culture of reading across the continent, UBA Foundation came up with the ‘Read Africa’ project, designed to resuscitate the reading culture amongst our youths across the African continent.
“As a pan-African institution, we believe that the future of Africa lies in her youth and for this reason, UBA Foundation is actively involved in facilitating educational projects and bridging the literacy-wide gap on a pan-African scale, and is helping to rekindle the dwindling reading and literacy culture amongst African youths as they pursue their education,” Atta said.
While emphasising the belief that a highly educated and well-informed youth is critical to the future of Africa, Atta seized the opportunity to read a few passages of the recommended novel to students and encouraged them to visit the UBA Foundation website to gain access to read some more at their leisure.
“UBA through its Foundation believes that quality education is crucial in developing the manpower needed by Africa to exploit emerging opportunities and propel the continent to higher levels of development,” the statement added.