Stakeholders have been called upon to make deliberate efforts to invest in the rights, education and wellbeing of the girl child for a better future for them and the society at large.
Ogun State First Lady, Mrs. Bamidele Abiodun made this call at the mentoring program organized by the Office of the First Lady and Ajose Foundation to commemorate the 2023 Girl Child Day themed ‘Invest in Girls’ Rights: Our Leadership and Well-being’ held at the Cinema hall of the June 12 Cultural Center, kuto, Abeokuta.
Mrs. Abiodun said there was urgent need to invest in the girls by ensuring that they were equipped with tools, support and opportunities necessary for them to discover their potential, explore various career paths to thrive in every aspect of their lives.
She noted that every girl has the right to live in a safe and nurturing environment, free from any form of violence or discrimination noting that she remained resolute in her efforts at creating a community that champions and protects the rights of every girl, fostering an atmosphere of respect, dignity and equality.
According to the First Lady, Ogun State has a particular focus on coaching girls and boys about sexuality and the importance of mutual respect and consent with a commitment to eradicating gender based violence in the state.
She added that the present administration’s commitment to education scholarships was aimed at breaking barriers and ensuring that every girl had access to quality education, irrespective of her background or circumstances noting that education was a key component of Ajose Foundation’s programs for girls in the state.
“We firmly believe that by investing in education, we are investing in a brighter and more prosperous future for our girls and our society as a whole.
“Keeping girls in school is critical, which is why over the past five years, we have worked with private sector partners to address period poverty in public schools by supporting initiatives in menstrual health and hygiene.” She added.
Mrs. Abiodun further stated that by ensuring access of girls to the essential services, the government was not only safeguarding their well-being but also nurturing their ability to make informed decisions and take control of their lives.
Mentoring the girls, the Deputy Governor, Engr. (Mrs) Noimot Salako Oyedele enjoined them to strive to be change makers and a force to reckon with noting that their worth was not in their gender but rather in their self esteem.
She further advised them to be persistent and hardworking in their life pursuit admonishing them also never to forget to pull each other up which according to her would foster harmony and successes among women folk.
The event which had in attendance female students drawn from public secondary schools across Remo, Ijebu, Yewa and Egba areas of the state also had mentoring session for the girls who were motivated by three women who were successful in their various careers, Morayo Afolabi Brown, TV and Writer, Bolanle Oduyale CEO Credit Wise Financials Limited and Eniola Edun, CEO GAMR, a leading platform for E- Sports Competitions as mentors.