The Federal Government through the At Risks Children Program (ARC-P), flagged off a programme aimed at training a total of 968 youths facilitators to mentor vulnerable children to be reliant, as part of their efforts to address the high number of out-of-school children and other associated risks against youths and children in the state.
The Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Social investment and the National Coordinator of the ARC-P program, Dr Maryam Uwais stated this while speaking in a keynote address she presented at the occasion held at the Sir Kashim Ibrahim College of Education (KICOE), in Maiduguri on Monday.
She said, “the Federal Government is concerned about the plight of the At Risks children(ARC-P), especially the out-of-school children who are above 20.5 million, hence, the introduction of ARC-P to reduce the number of vulnerable women.”
According to her, the programme is being structured and revamped to respond to the peculiarities of the youths while the youth facilitators will be assigned a minimum of 50 vulnerable children whom they are expected to groom and mentor using the knowledge gained during the capacity building programme.
Represented by the deputy director of budget and planning, Mrs Grace Akpabio who said the main objective of the program is geared towards reducing risks associated with youths, children and other vulnerable women, through education, health, and empowerment of youths and children.
“This 3 weeks training in Borno is an opportunity to familiarize the youths with ARC-p, provide basic tools on mentoring and guidance, recognized the different skills of the trainees and areas of comparative advantage, standard training syllables as well serve as a feedback mechanism.”
The Borno state governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum said ” today is another milestone of a partnership between the Federal government and the Borno state government. the ARC-P program and other federal governments’ social investment programs are in line with my administration’s 25-year development plan.”
Zulum represented by the state commission for women affairs, Hajiya Zuwaura Gambo said “I want to commend President Muhammadu Buhari for various social investment programmes in the state that were geared towards bettering the lives of our people, especially the vulnerable youths, women and children that were affected by the over 12 tears Boko Haram insurgency.
“The social investment programme is about investing in people, which is part of the 10-year agenda of the APC government in Borno state.
“The government has executed many programs and projects geared toward strengthening the resilience of the people affected by the insurgency.”
Zulum assured that the Borno state government would continue collaborating with the federal government and other donor agencies in training the youth.
He called on the trainees to put to good use the knowledge to be acquired to change the future of the state.
In his goodwill message, the Borno state commissioner for education, Hon. Lawan Wakilbe said out of 20.5 million out-of-school children in Nigeria, 1.8 are in Borno and the state has 56,000 orphans and 49,000 widows due to. Boko Haram insurgency, while a number of fatherless children are yet to be ascertained.
In her welcome address, the Borno state coordinator of the ARC-P, Hajiya Inna Galadima said “each of the 968 trainees that were drawn from various local government areas of the state was carefully selected and are expected to train 50 children, totalling about 67,000 children and the program is expected to last for two years, after which the state government will take over.
“The ARC-P program was launched sometime in May 2022, with a view to ensure that the living standard of vulnerable youths and children change for the better. I urge you to make good use of the opportunity provided by this training, ” Galadima added.
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