In order to boost girl-child enrolment across the Federal Ministry of Education and her development partners has commenced the constitution of Mothers’ Associations in school communities.
Members of the Mothers Associations will comprise teachers (female), women leaders, female school based management committee members, religious female leaders, women groups, school head girls, female artisans, female professionals and interested volunteers.
Declaring open the pre-meeting for the scaling up of Mothers Associations at Senatorial District Level in Mararaba, Nasarawa State at the weekend, Minister of State for Education, Barr. Ezenwo Nyesom Wike stated that Mothers associations can act as agents of mobilization and sensitization to improve the enrolment of the girl-child in the country.
The Minister stated that there is need to involve mothers from different backgrounds and occupations to act as advocates of girl-child education for influencing families in communities to embrace girl-education to enhance the overall development of the nation.
Wike who was represented at the meeting by the Director of Basic and Secondary Education of the Federal Ministry of Education, Barr. Chika Uwaezuoke said Mothers Association is one of the strategies for promoting girls education in Nigeria. Piloting this United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) assisted states led to increase in the number of girls enrolled into school.
“There is evidence that these girls are being retained, have high tendency of transiting to junior secondary. National awareness has been raised on the promotion of girls education, but there still exist a large number of girls who may not go to school if conscious effort is not made to attract girls to school.”
The Minister stated that the Federal Ministry of Education in the coming weeks will train and equip members of the mothers’ association in basic skills that will empower them to support the girl child.
“In mapping out training or activities for mothers’ associations, efforts should be made in considering the difference in culture, religion and illiteracy level of the women in a particular community as these will enhance the sustainability of the associations”, the minister noted.
The Millennium Development Goals Mothers’ Association Capacity Workshop for the seven states of the North-Western Geo-Political Zone will open on Tuesday, November 27 in Sokoto. The North East and North Central versions of the training will hold in Lafia between December 3rd and 6th, while the same workshop will hold in the South-West at Ibadan between December 10th and 13th.
Mallam Mohammed-Sani Usman, a resource person and consultant on Mothers’ Associations and Teachers Development pointed out that the formation and training of members of mothers associations in different parts of the country is a vital step towards improving girl-child enrolment.