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US-based philanthropic group boosts education in Abia

By Boniface Okoro, Umuahia on 25/07/2016

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A United States of America-based philanthropic group has given education a boost in Abia State with the donation of educational materials to a primary school in the state.

The Indianapolis-based Kappa Delta PI (KDP), through its Nigeria chapter, donated basic educational equipment and materials to St. Patrick’s Nursery and Primary School, Ozu Abam in Arochukwu Local Government Area of the state. The donated materials include desks, first aid boxes, chalkboards, wash hand basins and its stands, assorted text books and stationeries, inks, wall clocks and chalks.

According to the Executive Secretary/Director of Education of Umuahia Catholic Diocese, Rev. Fr. Charles Kanu, St. Patrick’s was chosen from a list of needy schools the church presented to to it.

During a ceremony organised at the Old Assembly Hall, College of Education, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike (MOUAU), to hand over the items to the beneficiary,  the KDP Nigeria President, Prof. Uche Grace Emetarom, said the donation was in fulfillment of the goup’s goals to promote education worldwide.

Emetarom said KDP is peopled by members who were very much aware that education was key to solving most problems facing humanity, adding that through its programmes, services and strategic partnership, KDP supports professional growth and teaching practices of education in all phases and at levels.

“The mission and vision of KDP is to sustain an honoured community of diverse education by promoting excellence and advancing scholarships, leadership and services, as well as help committed educators to become leaders in improving education for global citizenship," she said.

Explaining how funds for the donation was sourced, the don said: “The headquarters of KDP in Indianapolis, USA, raised some money for the Nigeria chapter, through the ‘9 for Nigeria’ project in 2015, to assist with giving teachers, students and pupils, the tools they need to succeed in the classroom. The first donation to schools from the proceeds of the ‘9 for Nigeria’ project was made to St. Thomas R.C.M. School 3, Agbowo, Ibadan, on the 6th of May, 2016. We are here today for another school donation to St. Patrick Nursery and Primary School, Ozu Abam.

“Tomorrow, we shall be at Imo state for the 3rd school donation to Obinaetiti Community Primary School, Arondizuogu. The fourth donation will be in Enugu State in August while others will follow subsequently.”

In his speech, the Catholic Bishop of Umuahia Diocese, Most Rev. Lucius Iwejuru Ugorji, who is also the proprietor of Mission Schools in Abia, commended KDP for the gesture.

Represented by Rev. Fr. Charles Kanu, Bishop Ugorji promised that teachers and pupils of St. Patrick’s school would put the items to judicious use with a view to improving their standards.

In their various speeches, a former Vice Chancellor of Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU), Prof. Samuel .O. Igwe, and Abia State Commissioner for Women Affairs, Lady Chinedu Brown, noted that educating a child is the greatest investment any person could make.

“Education helps to prune somebody's character in a society. It is important because it is a stepping stone to other human endeavours. Profit in education is never ending and is priceless in one’s life. Don’t take education for granted,” Prof. Igwe said.

He, however, appealed to education managers and teachers not to bastardise learning, warning that such actions “would only succeed in bringing the downfall of the standard of education.”

Prof. Igwe called for attitudinal change, lamenting that parents and students, with the assistance of some teachers, now buy people to write exams for their wards and urged teachers to shun misleading school children and their parents.

Earlier in her welcome remarks, the treasurer of KDP Nigeria and Coordinator, Gifting ceremony, Abia State, Prof. (Lady) Okpete Kanu, had lamented that very often, “news about the education sector in Nigeria has been about negative things that project man’s inhumanity to man, such as extorting money, sex-for-marks and other gratifications in return for good examination grades and promotions.”

She remarked that good things do happen in the education sector, even here in Nigeria and “this gathering is meant to expose you, our esteemed guests, to just one such good thing that education practitioners do to improve, not to blighten the human condition. That good thing that society needs to notice, talk about and possibly emulate, is this giving of educational equipment and materials to needy schools.”

Appreciating KDP for its kind gesture, the Headmistress of the school, Veronica K. Iroha, promised that her school would use the items judiciously.

The organisation had earlier paid a courtesy visit on the MOUAU Vice Chancellor, Prof. Francis Otunta.

•Photo by Boniface Okoro shows some of the donated educational materials.

Source News Express

Posted 25/07/2016 2:11:25 PM


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