A Non-Governmental Organisation, Global Support for Kids (GSK) has inaugurated committee for welfare of street children in Abeokuta, the Ogun State Capital, which is aimed to provide enabling environment for them.
Penpushing reports that, the ceremony had in attendance number of the children, who used the opportunity to narrate their individual experiences, which led them to the streets, lifestyle on the streets, and the genuine desire to turn a new leaf
The Director of Global Support for Kids, Opeyemi Olowookere, in his welcome speech explained that, to build a child is to build a nation, stressing on the importance to keep children off the streets, which he said would pave way for peace in the society, and urged all stakeholders to come together to safe the situation.
“Police, trade unions, motor unions, security agencies, community leaders and many others have roles to play. Children seeing as problems today could become greater persons in the society tomorrow if well care for’, Olowookere said.
“Parental care must be raised as some were fond of training them with cruelty, transfer of aggression on their children, unnecessary beating, raining curses and unholy abuses, all these lead to children running away from home’, he stated.
“When the home is not conducive for them, they eventually get acceptability outside home; they get freedom to do whatever they like. So, I urge total cooperation from all to take these children out of the streets. Let’s give them fatherly and motherly love and to relate with them well”, he said
.Penpushing further reports that, Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs Funmi Efuwape, in her remarks urged the committee members to avoid becoming agents of destruction, but be good ambassadors and justified the confidence reposed on them.
The Commissioner represented by the Director of Child, Akinola Toyin Kayode enjoined the committee not to shield the children whenever they go wrong in perpetrating acts inimical to the society.
Penpushing also reports that, Efuwape pointed out that if the committee ignore the wrong actions of the children, they would be endangering the lives of people in their community, as well as the society at large.
The Commissioner called for support of all stakeholders towards making life more meaningful for the children, stressing that the Ministry was ready to collaborate with Non-Governmental Organisations and Civil Society Organisations.
Penpushing reports that, the pioneer chairperson of Ogun State Chapter of Child Protection Network (CPN), Mrs Peju Osoba in her remarks called on the committee members to stand in-between and to be confidants for these children at all time.
The former Country Director of Terre des homes,(TDH) pointed out that the committee for the welfare of street children was set up to be first port of call for matters concerning the welfare of the children in street situation.
‘They mediate before the children get in conflict with the law. The children can report cases of abuse and exploitation to them for resolution instead of taking the law into their hands.They can support the police in investigation concerning reports on any of the children’, she said.
Penpushing further reports that,Osoba explained that the committee can carry out family tracing and reunification in conjunction with individual Non-Governmental Organisations(NGOs) and Child Protection Network(CPN) as a network.
The Media Consultant for Child Protection Network (CPN), Prince Dimeji Kayode-Adedeji in his remarks advised that the composition of the committee should be gender based with inclusion of women.
The founder of Penpushing media pointed out that women have major roles to play in the lives of the children, hence, need for them to be fully involved in the composition of the committee, and called on the organization to consider a synergy with the media, to propagate its activities in regards the laudable project.
Penpushing also reports that, members of the committee include: Abey B. Jimoh,(youths leader at Abule Otun); Idowu Hassan; Tunde Jimoh, Olaseni Arowora; Moshood Gbadanosi; Jide Dahunsi; Hakeem Ishola; Alhaja Tawakalitu Soneye, (Secretary, Lafenwa Market Association), and many others.
Meanwhile, the ceremony had in attendance personalities which include Olakunle Sanni(National Secretary of Child Protection Network), Soleye Akingbade (Coordinator, Child Protection Network, Ogun State Chapter) representatives of Nigeria Police; community leaders; youths leaders; Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Civil Society Organizations amongst others
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