FG inaugurates 500 facilitators to tackle out-of-school children in Gombe

At Risk Children Programme, on Saturday graduated 500 facilitators in Gombe to help reduce the increasing rate of out school children.

The ARC-P is an initiative of the Federal Government, geared towards improving the living conditions of street hawkers, orphans, people living with disability, survivors of child marriage, drug or substance abuse and internally displaced persons.

Speaking during the ceremony, Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment Maryam Uwais, urged the facilitators to help the children beyond acquisition of knowledge, adding that they were expected to provide mentorship.

Uwais revealed that the 500 facilitators were expected to give report on the process of each child under their care on a monthly basis.

Our correspondent reports that the ARC project has seven pillars which includes; Literacy & Numeracy, Vocational & Financial Skills, Digital Skills, Life Skills and Sports, Health & Nutrition, Agriculture &Climate Issues, Gate keeper, Intervention & Incentivisation.

The President’s adviser noted that this effort is a strategic approach towards solving the myriad of issues affecting enrolment of children within the communities.

Uwais said, “You have been trained to handle the responsibility of other children beyond learning. You will take care of the children in your communities. You will be expected to not only supervise and teach them you will also monitor them, you will mentor them.

“You will make sure you give us report every month on how each and every child that has been assigned to you is progressing within your community. This is a huge task but we feel this is the only way we can address the huge numbers of children that are out of school across the country.

The need to create an army of capacity within the community to see how we can support these children whose not fault of theirs are deprived of so many rights and protection.”

While lauding the cooperation of the state government in tackling issues affecting children, Uwais noted that the state has become a model for other states like Sokoto, Kaduna and Borno.

On his part, Governor Muhammadu Yahaya lauded the federal government for the far-reaching initiative, adding that it would reduce social vices within the state.

Yahaya said, “Let me specially commend the federal government of Nigeria under the able leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari for introducing this programme to tackle the crisis of vulnerable children, including Almajiri children, street children and youths potentially at risk physically and psychologically.

“The introduction of this programme in order to provide succor to the less privileged and vulnerable in our societies so that they could live a more dignified life is indeed timely and welcomed.”

Yahaya confirmed that the first batch of facilitators were selected from the list of unemployed youths in the state, while urging them to be ambassadors of the initiative.

“As pioneers of this programme, I urge you all to work hard, uphold your knowledge for good practice and training, remain focused and above all, be good ambassadors of our administration’s effort towards improving human capital development in the state,” Yahaya said.

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