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Education: EU earmarks €20m to support 150,000 children, 2,500 teachers in Borno

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Education: EU earmarks €20m to support 150,000 children, 2,500 teachers in Borno

As part of concerted efforts to provide of immediate education services and strengthening of the sector in Borno State, the European Union (EU) said it has injected 20 million Euros into education in the northeast state ravaged by Boko Haram insurgency

The Press Officer, EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Modestus Chukwulaka, said in a press statement signed in Abuja on Friday that more than 150,000 children and 2,500 teachers would benefit directly from the two new EU funded projects.

Chukwulaka said the fund earmarked by the bloc through its 11th European Development Fund for the projects, would expand and deepen the already extensive EU humanitarian and development assistance to the many victims of violence and displacement in Nigeria’s North East.

He said in the document that the fund would also address some of the underlying drivers of violent extremism in Nigeria.

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He said the proven international implementing partners would execute the projects, over a period of three years.

Chukwulaka said the programme would be implemented by two consortia, one led by Plan International, together with Save the Children and Gender Equality Peace and Development Centre of Nigeria.

He said the other was led by UNICEF, together with Norwegian Refugee Council and Street Child.

“Over 118, 000 children and 944 teachers will benefit from Plan International Nigeria’s new education project in Borno State.

“The three-year project is funded by the European Union (EU) and it is aimed at providing access to safe, inclusive and quality primary and secondary education for both boys and girls in particular (aged 6-18) who have faced displacement,’’ he said.

The EU press officer said more than 18, 000 children and youths, who had dropped out of school, would also benefit from an Accelerated Learning Programme (ALP).

“Twelve thousand young people will benefit from life skills training and 4,300 will be receiving employability business training.

“This is part of our commitment to support 100 million girls in Nigeria to learn, lead, decide and thrive in the next five years,” he said.

Chukwulaka said the project would renovate and rehabilitate 182 physical disabilities inclusive classrooms and construct 550 gender disaggregated girl and disability friendly latrines.

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He listed others to include 16 new boreholes with hand pumps, voucher-based school materials to benefit 23, 000 learners; and training to sensitise beneficiaries on hygiene practices.

“Also, there would be provision of teaching kits to the 123 schools, and dignity kits to 14, 620 girls to encourage attendance and limit absenteeism due to menstruation.

“It will target 100 primary schools, 23 secondary schools, 41 Sangaya schools, and support accelerated education across the 123 targeted schools in nine LGAs in Borno.”

The press officer also added that 944 primary and secondary teachers would be trained, with 430 being volunteers and receiving a monthly stipend under the action with 514 employed by the Government.

“Also, 130 Accelerated learning volunteer teachers will be trained and receive monthly stipends, while 80 Sangaya volunteers will be trained.

“Thirty-six schools will establish kitchen gardens and psycho-social resources will be brought into 73 schools with referral for children with trauma.

“School Based Management Committees (SBMCs) in 123 schools will be refreshed, retrained and work with communities to engage in education advocacy.”

According to him, UNICEF, together with the Norwegian Refugee Council and Street Child, will strengthen the resilience of the most vulnerable communities, especially children, and support inclusive, quality and equitable basic education in the state.

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