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Indigent pupils get respite in Ibeju-Lekki as Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International donates tuition free school

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IBRAHIM QUADRI

 

As part of moves to address education imbalance in the country,  indigent and vulnerable parents in Ibeju-Lekki local government area of Lagos State now have some respite.

 

The development is coming as Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International inaugurated its 12th InnerCity Mission School in Alatunshe area of Ibeju-Lekki. It is a 100 percent free eduction support initiative.

 

The Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International (COFI) is a faith-based non-governmental, non-political organization under the direction of its Founder, Rev Dr. Chris Oyakhilome.

 

At the commissioning of the Inner-City Mission School, Ibeju-Lekki on Sunday 18th September, hundreds of residents including, political leaders and the royal fathers of the community converged to witness the historic moment.

 

With the inauguration, not less than 200 enrollees were admitted and were provided with all materials needed for seamless take off.

 

Through various charitable initiatives the Foundation offers structured support to vulnerable and marginalized children and families through the provision of qualitative education, medical care, physical and spiritual nourishment and skills acquisition training.

 

Since its inception, over 2000 orphans, vulnerable, and excluded children have enjoyed the opportunity to complete their primary education and its complementary services.

 

The School provides school uniforms, school shoes & socks, textbooks, notebooks, stationery, school bags, sportswears, free transportation to & from school, free Primary Health Care at the School dispensaries and  Free School Meals to its pupils.

 

In her keynote speech, the Zonal Pastor, Christ Embassy, Ibeju-Lekki, Deola Phillips said, “Education is a core focus area for the Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International. In Nigeria, the estimated number of out-of-school children remains unacceptably high. According to reports, poverty is a major reason why millions of children have never seen the four walls of a school or have dropped out of school.

 

“The Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International is at the forefront of protecting the right of every indigent child to education because we strongly believe that education can be the catalyst that breaks the cycle of poverty. In the words of our Founder, “One of the most important things we receive at an early age which sets us up for a successful future is education.”

 

Phillips, who is the CEO and Chief sponsor of the school added, “This is why the Foundation is committed to breaking down the barriers to education by helping marginalized and vulnerable children access quality education at no cost.

 

“Through various initiatives we provide essential educational materials to enhance learning and promote literacy skills among thousands of indigent children. We have a network of primary schools spread across Africa and Asia that provide free qualitative education to children and the InnerCity Mission School, Ibeju-Lekki is the latest addition to this network.

 

“In 2020, we saw schools globally shut down and children forced to suspend their education indefinitely. The closure of schools in different countries impacted over 60% of the world’s student population. However, the most affected were the poor and vulnerable as they had very limited opportunities to continue learning at home. Many indigent children were left behind academically and even with the reopening of schools, some were unable to get back on their education track.

 

“This is why the Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International, through the InnerCity Mission, has doubled its efforts to ensure every indigent child has access to education. This School is the 4th 100% free school we have built and completed since the reopening of Schools and we are building more schools.

 

“By giving indigent children access to education and helping them learn relevant life skills, we are molding them to become profitable members of society which will, in turn, help us to build and sustain vibrant and economically stable communities.

 

“Today, we are set to commission the InnerCity Mission Primary School, Ibeju-Lekki which will provide a suitable place of learning for the children in this community and environs. This is a monumental step in building the foundation of a great future for them.

 

“This Primary School will equip boys and girls alike from communities in Ibeju-Lekki with necessary tools to help them live above poverty and deprivation. Through the unique curriculum we offer they will be transformed to become children who would grow up to be adults who bring profit and not destruction to the society,” she noted.

 

The Director of the School, Pastor Omoh Alabi stated, “For low-income families, the cost of education for their children be it tuition, school uniforms, books or even stationery is a luxury forced to take the back seat when compared to food, rent, utilities, and clothing.”

 

She added, “A child’s early years are the foundation for his or her future development and access to early childhood and primary education provides a strong base for this foundation.

 

“To deny our children their fundamental right to education is to hamper the growth and advancement of any nation.

 

“The Chris Oyahkilome Foundation International In its effort to contribute to community development and nation-building puts a great deal of emphasis on education,

 

*It is a sustained solution that eliminates the financial barriers limiting children in low-income families from accessing or completing their primary school education; irrespective of gender, religion, ethnicity or nationality.

 

“Each child enrolled across our network of schools, receives a scholarship to start and complete their primary education.  And In addition, to quality Education and more all through their primary education journey, at no cost!”

 

In her welcome address, the Coordinator of InnerCity Mission School, Deaconess Venessa Nosegbe said, “The InnerCity Mission Nursery/Primary School is a direct platform of the InnerCity Mission for Children that provides free and quality education to indigent children who otherwise would not have had an opportunity for schooling without such intervention. Our vision is to give them a hope and future through qualitative education that will impact their lives and by the extension their communities and the world at large

 

*We also have a Mission to provide a broad and up-to-date educational experience for the indigent child, with focus on their spiritual, physical and mental development for a life of service and fulfilment. With our blend of Nigerian/British curriculum, every child learning needs is addressed

 

“And now we have Innercity Mission Nursery/Primary School, Ibeju Lekki, Lagos state  joining our group of schools.

 

“We are still spreading our tentacles globally. Our aim is to see every indigent given an opportunity to education.

 

“Our core values of Godliness, Excellence, Integrity, Self-reliance and Self Discipline are well entrenched in our pupils in all our group of Schools, and we are confident that the pupils of Innercity Mission Nursery/Primary School Ibeju Lekki will have one of the best quality education in Lagos state.”

 

The chairman of Ibeju-Lekki Local Council Development Area, Bamidele Kasali also expressed joy for siting the School in the community, saying the Foundation has raised the bar of educational development of the residents.

 

Kasali who was represented at the event by Adebayo Lukman promised that the government would ensure that adequate security is provided to safeguard the School and its environs.

 

The Chief host who is the Onisolu of Solu-Alade Kingdom in Alatunshe Community, Ibeju-Lekki, HRM, Oba Muideen Babatunde Balogun expressed pleasure over the choice of his domain for the School, saying “What makes this occasion important to me is the fact that place high premium on education because that is the strategic key to personal development and overall elevation of any society.”

 

The royal father explained, “The focus of Inner City Mission for Children in reaching out to orphaned, vulnerable and excluded children with quality and tuition-free is a very commendable idea, especially as our country, Nigeria, continues to grapple with the problem of out-of-school children. We all recognize that increasing poverty is one of the contributing factors for the rising number of Nigerian children who are out of school.

 

“Many parents know the importance of education, especially formal western education, but they are often challenged in giving their children and wards sound and quality education due to the lack of necessary personal resources.

 

“This school with its special status as a 100% tuition-free centre of learning will go a long way in catering to the yearning desires and needs of our people, especially the indigent ones, who are desirous of giving their children and wards sound educational footing in life. The presence of your school here will count as another development marker for Ibeju-Lekki,” the royal father stated.

Newly commissioned School, during the Official Commissioning of InnerCity Mission School, Alatunse Community in Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos. Yesterday.

 

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