By Funmi Ogundare
The Daniel Ogechi Akujobi Memorial (DOAM) Foundation recently put smiles on the faces of pupils of Ibafon Primary School, Ajegunle and Local Government Primary School, Bayeku, Ikorodu through the donation of school bags equipped with books and other educational materials.
Speaking at the brief presentation in Lagos, the founder and mother of the late Daniel in whose name the foundation was founded, Mrs. Chinwe Sotonye Akujobi expressed delight that the pupils are happy to take home things that would make them stay in school.
She said the impact is much as without education, the pupils may not achieve much in life.
“Everything is not about food alone, but we have to prepare them for school as without education, you may not move forward.”
She recalled how her son, who was 13 years old at that time died when the vehicle they were in had a fatal accident 15 years ago when she was taking him to school in Ogun State, adding that he was a generous boy who loved to help the less privileged.
“He loved giving out to children and those who are less priviledged. In the church one day, we were surprised to see that the money he was supposed to give as offering was given to a poor man sitting at the gate of the church. I took him to see the reverend father at that point and he said as long as you are offering to the poor, you are offering to God.”
She said with that, the family was moved to have a legacy named after him to help the less priviledged in the society by establishing the foundation. She thanked some of the sponsors, including Pentagon Plastics Industries Limited, Niger Biscuit Company Limited and Sacvin Nigeria Limited for their support towards the donation of the materials.
The Head Teacher of the school, Mrs. Rosaline Nwajah thanked the foundation for the initiative, saying that the move was in line with the ‘Leave No Child Behind’ initiative of the Lagos State government. “The initiative will spur them to come to school.”
She said if that kind of initiative was introduced to people that are out of school due to one reason or the other, it would make them come to school rather than hawking on the streets.
“I know a boy who hawks fish every morning and if you call him to come to school, he will run away. If this kind of initiative had been introduced to people like that, it will ginger him to go to school.”
The Education Supervisor, Ajeromi Local Government, Saheed Ojora, described the initiative as a welcome idea, as it will boost the morale of the pupils to come to school and read more.
“We appreciate what the foundation has done and we are still looking forward to partner with them.”
On the issue of out-of- school children, he said though it is a global thing, the state is already making moves to ensure that children stay in school through different initiatives.
The Speacial Assistant to the Ajeromi Local Government Chairman on Political Matters and also a member of the Committee on Education, Casmir Amagbo expressed delight about the programme, saying that some NGOs are beginning to remember the things that are good for the children.
He commended the foundation, saying, “I thank God for what they are doing. This kind of initiative can bring pupils back to school and the country can be better.”