It is a worthy initiative to improve education in Nigeria. Everybody present was delighted and applauded those behind it as the details were unfolded at a well attended meeting of some private schools owners in Lagos and a public – spirited organisation.
With a mission to enrich lives through social development while improving the delivery of academic knowledge among pupils, ” Call to Love Initiative ” is determined to provide funding to what it calls ” low cost private schools” in Lagos state. Such schools are mainly found in neglected neighborhood and low income areas in the state and attended mainly by children of low income earners. The learning environment of such schools is poor, buildings dilapidated, instructional materials inadequate and staff poorly remunerated. Nonetheless, the owners are rendering services that cannot be discountenanced.
To raise the quality of services being rendered, the Call To Love Initiative has come out with a special package in conjunction with the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund.Founder of the initiative, Omowumi Ajila, espoused the details at the meeting held at office of the Lagos state branch of the Nigerian Red Cross Society. According to her: “Over the years, we collate feedback from our beneficiaries about their school; they are grateful for their school and teachers and wish their school had better facilities and ambience. “While we are aware that the schools are passionate about giving the best to their pupils, most of the facilities require funding.
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“That is why we are glad that the Lagos State Government through, the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, has a dedicated fund for low fees schools to improve the quality of facilities and education to these pupils. ”She said the LSETF for low-cost Private Schools, by the Lagos State Government, was to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. “The loan program of LSETF, in partnership with First Bank of Nigeria and EdFin Microfinance Bank, is to address the challenges of access to fund by low-cost schools operating within Lagos State. “The criteria to access the loan include; schools operational in Lagos State, a maximum loan size of N5 million with a 12 to 24 months tenure, an interest rate of 9 per cent and equity provided by approved beneficiaries which will be 5 per cent of loan size.
”Speaking more about the organisation, she said Call To Love was founded in 2010, and has impacted over 900 beneficiaries through its plethora of interventions. “One of these interventions is the annual Making A Difference with Education (MWE) Summer Camp programme for low-cost school pupils, a flagship programme created for children unable to complete their education; to attain their full potential. “The goal is to build the beneficiaries capacity outside of their core, give academic, financial and social support and improve the teaching environment of primary schools.
”Addressing guests at the graduation ceremony of the 2021 MWE Summer Camp, which was held simultaneously with the breakfast forum, Omowunmi said: “Our approach of engagement is to bond with these children and get to know areas where we can be of assistance in terms of their social development.“They are the sixth set and introduced to a wider range of soft skills like catering, graphic design, recycled art and wellness.”
SOURCE: THE NATION