An NGO, Ladi Memorial Foundation (LMF) donated uniforms to 103 pupils of LGEA Primary School, Ileke, Olamaboro Local Government area of Kogi.
The Foundation, through its institute, ‘the Chateko Vocational Institute’ also empowered 16 unemployed youths on garment making skills.
Speaking at the inaugural graduation ceremony in Ileke, Olamaboro, Mrs Rosemary Osikoya, the founder of the NGO, said the foundation freely trained the youths for six months on garment making adding that everything needed were provided for all the trainees free of charge, including materials, equipment, instructors among others.
She urged the graduands to maximise the moral training and skills they have acquired to better their lives, families, communities, and the society at large.
Osikoya, who is also the Kogi Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, said the gesture was to empower male and female youths to be self-reliant, thereby reducing the burden of out of school young adults and attendant brain drain from local communities.
According to her, the trainees’ final projects include: sowing of uniforms for pupils in the community school, sowing dresses for adults, male and female children, and their own graduation gown.
Other items designed, made and displayed were: launch bags, adult bags, wallets, skirts and blouses, which were distributed freely to people of the community.
In his remarks, the Chairman Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Foundation, Arc. Olushola Osikoya, thanked God for the opportunity to be of service to humanity, and helping the needy.
He said the Foundation’s vision is to raise generations of impactful, innovative, productive, skillful and talented people.
He said that the LMF was founded in memory of the founder’s late mother Mrs Ladi, based on her passion and commitment to see people becoming self-reliance and positively impacting the society.
”To provide technical and vocational training to equip a critical mass irrespective of sex, class, gender and social backgrounds- with practical skills for entrepreneurship and lifelong employability, among others,” he said.
According to him, a total of 16 trainees of various underprivileged background and heart touching realities benefited full scholarship for the six months intensive training.
He said that the training programme was reviewed to align with the NABTEB curriculum and MNEC policy guideline for Mass literary, adult and non formal education.
He added that the institute was at the concluding stages of opening a study centre in Lokoja, so as to provide access to urban dwellers.
He urged the graduands not to stop learning, stressing that expertise required continuous training and learning.
The foundation offered an academic scholarship award to the best graduating student, Habib Usman, 17 years, and donated sew machines to five other best graduands.
The school uniforms sown by the graduands were donated to 103 pupils of LGEA Primary School, Ileke, who did not have uniform, when the NGO visited the school.
The foundation also donated school sandals to majority of the pupils who either came to school barefooted and also fed the children.
The traditional ruler of the community, Chief Emmanuel Salifu, the Aidokanya Emonoja and Acting Ochogu of Ogugu, commended the foundation for the gesture, saying it was the first of its kind in the history of the area.
”I am so much impressed by the displayed products which were made by the trainees, I thought they were bought by the NGO to share,” Salifu said.
Other dignitaries at the occasion include: the Administrator of Olamaboro Local Government, NABTEB State Coordinator, Agency for Adult and Non-Formal Education (AANFE), among others.