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Schools Sewing Championship: FCT, LMF Take TVET Sensitization To Grassroot Level In Area Councils

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By Stephen Adeleye

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Education Secretariat in collaboration with Ladi Memorial Foundation (LMF), have carried out grassroots sensitisation on Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET) towards the upcoming Incentivised Pilot School Sewing Championship Project 2023 (SSCP2023).

The FCT/LMF’s advocacy and sensitisation meetings began with Abaji and Kwali Area Councils on January 23, and ended at Gwagwalada Area Council on Monday.

The Incentivised pilot SSCP2023 was flagged-off on January 19, by the Honourable Minister of State for Education, Goodluck Opiah.

The pilot SSCP2023, which was initiated by LMF and supported by UNESCO in partnership with FCT Education Secretariat is expected to have Nine (9) winners from each of the Six (6) Area Councils in the Territory.

The stakeholders after the SSCP2023 flagged-off, embarked on the sensitisation meetings and advocacy visits to Abaji, Kwali, Kuje, Bwari and Gwagwalada Area Councils in its bid to get all stakeholders’ input for a successful championship.

In all, 54 finalists would emerge from the qualifying stage in March, 2023. from schools across the six area councils of FCT who will undergo a 5-day intensive training at a Boot Camp after which three winners will emerge.

Participants and participating schools that will emerge 1st, 2nd and 3rd positions at the final competition will get sewing machines and sewing equipment as prizes.

Speaking at various TVET Sensitisation, Advocacy visits/Townhall meetings, at various Area Councils, the Executive Director of LMF, Mrs. Rosemary Osikoya, said the competition was for students between age 12 and 20 years, in both private and public secondary schools.

She said that advocacy and sensitisation meetings were to create adequate awareness about the SSCP2023, to enable the eligible candidates take advantage of the project.

Osikoya, the immediate past Kogi Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, advised students who have a gift or interest in sewing to take advantage of the programme and showcase their skills.

The LMF executive director explained that the programme has also given an opportunity for young people who had left school to come back and acquire a skill.

In their various responses, the Area Councils’ Chairmen, thanked the LMF team for the sensitisation and advocacy visits, and commended the executive director for the initiative.

According to the chairmen, the SSCP2023 is a brilliant initiative that would encourage students to engage in functional technical and vocational skills while in school for their own benefts and also boost job creation.

The Executive Chairman of Kuje Area Council, Mr Abdullahi Sabo, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Mr Suleiman Sabo, described the benefits attached to the SSCP2023 as ”a laudable one”.

Sabo assured the team that the overall best student of the competition would come from Kuje Area Council.

”As a Council, we shall do everything humanly possible to assist the competitors.

”We want to thank you very sincerely for this great opportunity as we all know skill is very important to our lives.

”Every individual is talented in one way or the other; the only issue is how to explore the individual talent.

”It is hoped that this avenue will give opportunity to the individual candidate to harness their talents,” Sabo said.

The chairman urged the students to endeavor to pick their participant forms, saying it was free, and they have nothing to lose rather than to gain by participating in the competition.

The team also paid advocacy visits to His Royal Highness the Gomo of Kuje, Dr Haruna Tanko Jibril, who appreciated the LMF for considering it worthy to come up with such laudable project.

The royal father eulogised the LMF ED for having a very good intention to uplift the standard of education and upgrade the standard of their children who were engaged in commercial education.

The monarch also appreciated the FCT Minister, Minister of State for Education and other management and staff of the council.

Honestly speaking, I am very happy to have you here. What you have told us so far made me to be happy within myself and comfortable with your project.

”Your vision has been practicalised and tested, and you have told us all that you needed to do.

”We, the traditional rulers shall continue to offer our support to make sure that this your project succeed at any level of your choice within the education cycle,” Jibril said.

He congratulated the students in Mass Education and those that would participate in the competition.

The traditional ruler stressed that the project would make history as it would touch the lives of their people in the FCT and Nigeria at large.

At Bwari Area Council, the Executive Chairman, Hon. John Gabaya, applauded the LMF team for the initiative, saying it would serve as an avenue for students to acquire functional skills.

Gabaya, who was represented by the Council’s Director of Education and Social Development, Mrs Dinatu Tukura, said the competition would boost youths’ participation in skills acquisition programmes.

The chairman added that it would also enhance school teachers’ engagement in skills training.

Gabaya assured that Bwari Council would participate fully in the competition, boasting that the winner would emerge from the council.

The LMF also during the week, extended the sensitisation and advocacy visits to the National President of Non-Governmental Association For Literacy Support Services (NOGALSS) as well as the Board Chairperson of the National Senior Secondary Education Commission (NSSEC).

In his response, Comrade Noah Emmanuel, the NOGALSS National President, appreciated the LMF team for their doggedness in getting the approvals for the project.

”We have heard your requests and all the things you are doing. As an organisation, we will sit and consider definite areas where we can give our full support.

”We are giving you all the support because it is not easy to get grant from UNESCO.

We are committed to supporting the project in terms of more technocrats in the areas you want members of NOGALSS to be involved; just let us know our specific assignment.

”Be rest assured that we will be with you and stand by you to see to the success of the project, because you have done a very great job,” Emmanuel said.

 

On her part, the Board Chairperson of NSSEC, Amb. Nimota Akanbi, commended the organisation for the initiative and assured LMF of future partnership for national reach in line with NSSEC mandate.

 

Speaking to newsmen to wrap up the TVET sensitisation and advocacy visits, the Executive Director on behalf of LMF Board of Trustees, expressed her profound gratitude to all the supporting partners of the Incentivized Pilot Schools Sewing Championship Project 2023.

 

She lauded the unequalled support of FCT Education Secretariat through the Department of Mass Education (DME), their management and staff at headquarters and zonal level.

 

She also thanked other partners such as: FME, FRCN, NASENI, NTA, NITP, NMEC, RHAGF, SMEDAN, NBTE, UBEC, NAPTIN, NAPPS, NOGALSS, POWA, Daruwana Foundation, Regy/Henry foundation, Karinate Education Foundation, Nigerian Tribune, among others.

 

Osikoya expressed her excitement over the opportunities that the project presents in terms of collaboration, cooperation, partnership and peaceful coexistence of formal and informal sectors.

She noted that the LMF had also been engaging in Literacy Project to educate out-of-school children and drop-outs as well as engaging them in vocational skills and empowering them.

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