Tuesday, April 16, 2024

EU, UNICEF to empower 1.5 million children, youths in Jigawa, Katsina, Kano

Kano will have the lion share of the project because of its number of out-of-school children.

• February 21, 2024

The European Union in collaboration with the United Nations Children’s Fund has pledged to enrol and upskill 1.5 million children, youths and adolescents in Jigawa, Katsina and Kano states.

Senior Education Manager, UNICEF, Kano Field Office, Michael Banda, made the pledge at a multi-sectoral key stakeholders meeting on the education and youth empowerment project on Wednesday in Kano.

He said that the programme was aimed at increasing the number of girls and boys benefiting from safe, inclusive, relevant learning and skills development opportunities in Kano, Jigawa and Sokoto states.

Mr Banda said the four-year programme, which commenced from October 2023 to August 2027, would cover Kano, Jigawa and Sokoto states.

He said, “The programme operation is categorised into three main outputs involving strengthened education governance and learning, expanded access to a safe and inclusive learning environment and quality, continuous learning and enhanced competencies.”

The education manager pointed out that in Nigeria, many children between seven and 14 could not read or write simple sentences.

“Our aim is for them to get skills that will make them competitive, marketable and self-sustaining to start a business. We are also looking at Integrated Qur’anic Schools because we have Qur’anic schools that do an integrated curriculum that includes literacy and numeracy beyond religious education. We are going to catch everyone, including those who do not have space in the formal school,” he said.

Mr Banda said that Kano State had been selected to be one of the top beneficiaries of the newly introduced European Union-funded education and empowerment programme in Nigeria.

According to him, Kano will have the lion share of the project because of its population and the number of out-of-school children.

He said that the EU was not only concentrating its resources in Kano but also in the North-West, North-East and other states in Nigeria.

The UNICEF education manager added that the EU was an all-weather partner for UNICEF and various states in ensuring that children accessed quality education.

Earlier, the Commissioner for Education, Umar Doguwa, commended the development partners for the gesture.

He restated the state government’s commitment to invest in the education sector.


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