Category: Events & Dates

Celebrating NNNGO’s Gender-Focused Membership

Celebrating NNNGO’s Gender-Focused Membership

ONYEMAECHI HOPE FOR THE HELPLESS FOUNDATION

Emerged in 2007 to care for the less privileged, give hope to the poor and the helpless, OHHF focuses on good health and well-being; education and poverty; gender equality and women empowerment.

OHHF believes that for women to reach their full potentials there is need for advocacy and sensitization on gender equality, women liberation and access to quality education for the girl child.

The foundation’s achievements could be seen in the areas of Health: Free Medical Check Up/Treatment and Distribution of Insecticide Treated Nets to the less privileged in Enugu and Anambra states; Motherless Babies Home Visitation(Visit to Red Cross Motherless Babies Home Onitsha in Anambra state, 2017); Scholarship Awards with a major focus on widow empowerment cum free medical treatment also in 2017 at Central School Umunevo  Amagunze, Nkanu East LGA Enugu State Nigeria with a record of over one hundred beneficiaries.

On International Women’s Day, Onyemaechi Hope For The Helpless Foundation’s message to women world over, especially to (THAT CAREER WOMAN) is Learn to see criticism, comments and notes from your bosses as an avenue for development. Even if the criticisms sting, move on and become a better YOU. Having a thicker skin is for the best for “no one has time to hold your hands and give you a cookie over every assignment that comes your way”.

PHELYN SKILL ACQUISITION CENTER

Phelyn Skill Acquisition Center aims to create employment, reduce poverty and enhance economic independence among Nigerian women and youths.

Established to tackle the challenge of gender inequality, hunger and poverty, the center is proud to contributing to create free business development courses to enable women improve their skills. In her five years of establishment PSAC has trained, empowered and have a record of well over 3000 beneficiaries across the 36 states of the federation.

With a strong core value in gender justice and fairness, Phelyn Skill Acquisition Center together with her partners (NDE, SMEDAN, NYSC, UNIDO HP LIFE and Youth Alive Foundation) have been able to implement laudable projects on women empowerment which include vocational trainings on production of beaded necklace, hat/fascinators, batik, tie and dye and event decorations. Also through their efforts, PSCA facilitates empowerment programmes on cake/pastries and digital literacy; participated on Women and Web Alliance Project by World Pulse where 60 youth corps members were taught on how to maximize the use of their time with mobile phones without internet access.

CONCLUSION

Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world. The 21st century is the century for change and the planet earth is ready. The 21st century woman has to fight to change the status quo that created inequality, the we have always done it this way syndrome, which opines that women must be seen and not heard must be stopped, a change which will radically gain an unprecedented momentum. The time is NOW, the time is ripe for women of all races to come together and be the harbinger of the new change and so it is with a consensus that education is the key for women’s liberation while equal access to health care, decent work, representation in political and economic decision-making processes will fuel the much-needed sustainable economies which would pave way to A BALANCED WORLD for a balanced world would in every way birth a BETTER WORLD.

WOMAN: The Untapped Reservoir

WOMAN: The Untapped Reservoir

Since the existence of human, women have always been the inferior gender. Society over time has placed labels amongst the two genders (man and woman). For men, they are: superior, the provider, the shield and head of the family. While women have been labelled as the: inferior, weak, house/home keeper and child bearer.

Women from past centuries have amazingly changed the world which have in some ways paved way for a better society. During the historical period, several women achieved awesome goals but still remained unequal and inferior to men. The historical woman could not vote, hold an everyday job nor a place in politics. They primarily managed the home front, they were seen and not heard, they had voice but were voiceless.

And so came the gender parity, the fundamental human right.

The Charter of the United Nations, signed in 1945, was the first international agreement to affirm the principle of equality between women and men. Since then, the UN has helped create a historic legacy of internationally-agreed strategies, standards, programmes and goals for women so they could stand as equal partners with men in achieving respect, sustainable development, peace and security.

The United Nations thus declared 1975 through 1985 DECADE FOR WOMEN. Four world conferences on women were held; Mexico City 1975, Copenhagen 1980, Nairobi 1985 and 1995 Beijing Conference. These conferences directed searchlight on a variety of issues affecting the status of women in the society, the issues which include; Violence against women; Women’s Rights; Women’s Reproductive Health et all.

Since those early years, International Women’s Day has thus begun to assume a new global dimension for women in developed and developing countries alike. The growing international women’s movement, which has been strengthened by these four global United Nations women’s conferences, have helped to build support for women’s rights and participation. Celebrated in many countries around the world, IWD is a day for women’s recognition for their social, economic, cultural and political achievements, a day which calls to action for accelerating gender parity for global transformation.

No doubt, the 21st century will be the century of the female gender, that is if the world is indeed ready to embrace this paradigm shift. Women today are much different than historical women. The modern woman is consumed with many obligations, duties and responsibilities. Women are beginning to step out of their historical role of house manager dependents to a more independent, sophisticated gender. The roles of women in the society have significantly changed, goals and opportunities are more abundant for women and the modern woman is taking advantage of them in a positive and healthy way.

Today, women can vote and be voted for; the political space is present (although still narrow); today’s women have career choices and are more diligent so much so that they are beginning to have rising wages. Today, more than 70% of women work full time or part-time paid jobs which contributes an emphatic part of households’ income. Sadly, this social phenomenon is breeding profound changes that carries financial, emotional and psychological implications for both men and women, particularly in a conservative society as ours.

World over, there is increasingly an understanding of the need to unleash the untapped potential of women. There are evidences to show that when women participate even in leadership, the impacts extend far beyond the ordinary.

Common with women all over the world, African women face a variety of social, economic, legal and political constraints. Indeed, some laws somewhere still treat women as MINORS. We hear that in Congo, a woman must have her husband’s consent to open a bank account.

Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation with approximate 180 million citizens (CIA World Fact Book 2015) recent studies reveal that modern Nigerian women are on the lowest ladder of you name it area. Nigeria with her male dominated environs have women as subordinates and underrepresented, report shows that in the nation’s 8th National Assembly, women occupy just 7 out of 109 Senate seats and only 22 out of 360 seats in the House of Representatives.

Political inclusion for women should be a fundamental aspect of modern democracy in Nigeria and world over and so the female gender must be encouraged. Improved representation of women have massive impacts so much so that testimonies of improved policy changes, more friendly laws (especially for married women), economic growth, sustainable peace and development abound.

Women who successfully combine careers with families have been termed lucky but the irony of life is that all may not come out with such luck, for there is a rise in marital instability as evidently seen in the last two decades; domestic violence; promiscuity; child marriage; human trafficking (International Labor Organization estimates that there are about 20.9 million victims of human trafficking globally, 55% of whom are women and girls).

Be that as it may, women have exceeded much expectations with their numerous hands working magic; a modern day woman can simultaneously work on her laptop, cook in the kitchen, tend to a teary-eyed baby, do laundry and still attend to the sexual needs of her husband. Regardless of all these responsibilities, she strives still to thrive even in her chosen career.

Extreme Poverty: A Threat to Human Security

It is believed that wherever men and women are condemned to live in extreme poverty, human rights are typically violated.

The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 1 (SDG) is to end extreme poverty by 2030 which seeks to ensure social protection for the poor and eradicating it remains one of the greatest challenges facing the world today. The world wonders if the goals are in view, if the goals are soundly on track to sweep out poverty in line with AGENDA 2030; or if the goals are indeed extremely ambitious according to FORBES.

While poverty has been historically accepted in some parts of the world as inevitable, especially the developing nations, for the population now grows faster than the available resources, nonetheless making wealth scarce for many, which inevitably calls to action: social protection systems need an urgent implementation to help alleviate global sufferings.

During the 1970s, World Bank’s policy was meant to use funds to raise the productivity and living standards of the poor, yet in spite of these intensive reduction strategies, the poverty level in several countries of the world still remains pathetically low.  Recent researches have also demonstrated that several families are in constant dire need of basic amenities.

World Bank defines extreme poverty as living on less than 1.90 dollars per day, and moderate poverty as less than $3.10 a day. It has been estimated that in 2008, 1.4 billion people had consumption levels below $1.25 a day, while 2.7 billion lived on less than $2 a day. Another research estimates that 1.44 billion people live in extreme poverty as UNICEF’s figures show almost 385 million children survive on less than $1.90 a day.

Reports by World Bank data further reveals worldwide inequality and poverty, the data reveals half of the 767 million people living on less than 1.90 dollars a day in 2013 were under 18, these unarguably indicates that much effort is indeed needed to meet the SDG 1 to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030.

With this year marking the 25th anniversary of the declaration by the General Assembly on 22nd December 1992, 17th October as the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, this years’ theme: Coming Together with Those Furthest Behind To Build An Inclusive World Of Universal Respect For Human Rights And Dignity, reaches out to all developing nations to ensure that NO ONE IS INDEED LEFT BEHIND.

Despite the tremendous progress in reducing extreme poverty, rates remain stubbornly high still in low-income countries especially those affected by conflict and political unrest.

Unless action is taken, Sub-Saharan Africa will be home to more than 86% of the world’s extreme poor, for the number of people living in extreme poverty is concentrated in some of these most unstable and populous parts of Africa, raising the risk of political violence and devastating disease outbreaks.

With global estimates of child poverty inaccurately unavailable, some reports, however, reveal that Sub-Saharan Africa houses the largest share of the world’s extremely poor children.

According to the UN, Nigeria is the third most populous country in the world. Currently, with some new report (JUNE 2018) reveals that the country with an estimated population of 198 million, has overtaken India (1.3 billion) as the country with the highest number of poor people in the world.

Nigeria has about 7 people going into poverty every minute. An obvious reason, Nigeria’s population is growing faster than its economy.

SOME CAUSES OF POVERTY

  • Little or no access to employment
  • Inadequate access to good food and clean water
  • Conflict, war and violence. Nigeria’s eight-year conflict with Boko Haram has resulted in the deaths of over 20,000 civilians. Approximately 2.1 million people have been displaced by the conflict while 7 million need humanitarian assistance.
  • World Bank estimates that climate change like drought, flood and earthquakes have the power to push more than 100 million people into poverty over the next ten years.
  • Zero education. UNESCO estimates that 171 million people could be lifted out of extreme poverty if they left school with basic reading skills cum quality education.

Today, more than one billion people live without necessary amenities, the number of people, who lived below the federal poverty line has gone way beyond the sky. With flat incomes stuck at historically high levels, one might assume that chronic economic insecurity which has obviously resulted in poverty might just be the new normal.

SOME STEPS TO CUT POVERTY AND INCREASE ECONOMIC GROWTH

  • Develop and implement rapid and sustained economic growth policies and programs, in areas such as health, education, agriculture, gender equality etc.
  • Invest in and implement agricultural programs.
  • Create and improve access to jobs and raise incomes.
  • Provide access to technology and innovation
  • Encourage countries to engage in trade as a path out of poverty, for trade is key to growth and prosperity.

FACTS ABOUT GLOBAL POVERTY

  • Nearly half of the world’s population, more than 3 billion people live on less than $2.50 a day.
  • According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die every day due to poverty while another 1 billion live in poverty.
  • 805 million people worldwide do not have enough food to eat.
  • More than 750 million people lack adequate access to clean drinking water. Diarrhoea caused by inadequate drinking water, sanitation, and hand hygiene kill an estimated 842,000 people every year globally and approximately 2,300 people every day.
  • In 2011, 165 million children under age 5 had stunted growth due to chronic malnutrition.
  • As of 2013, 21.8 million children under 1 year of age worldwide had not received the three recommended doses of vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis.
  • A quarter of the world lives without electricity, approximately 1.6 billion people.
  • According to Oxfam, it would take $60 billion annually to end extreme global poverty.

The World Food Programme says, “The poor are hungry and their hunger traps them in poverty.” Hunger is the number one cause of death in the world, killing more than HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

NO GIRL! NO WOMAN!! NO LIFE!!!

NO GIRL! NO WOMAN!! NO LIFE!!!

The world’s 1.1 billion girls are a source of power, innovation, strength and creativity.

Today, 11th October 2017, Nigeria Network of NGOs joins partners all over the world in marking the International Day of the Girl to recognize the imperativeness of empowering and investing in girls.

This year focuses on the theme ‘With Her: A Skilled Girl Force’.  The world must also focus on the need to invest in healthy, skilled and resilient (girl force) a key to competing effectively in the global economy.

Many countries have records of Girl Child being denied of human rights and sometimes her basic needs. The Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1989, sets the basic human rights of children; the right to survival and development of potential; protection from harmful influences, abuses and exploitation and full participation in family, cultural and social life.

Based on their gender, girls increasingly face gender inequality. This inequality includes access to quality education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care, protection from discrimination and child marriage. According to the International Labor Organization, 1 out of 3 girls will be sexually abused before they reach age 18.

The message is clear, globally, more than 1.8 billion people between the ages of 10 and 24, and more than 90% of these young people live in developing countries with the girls suffering the most. Research also reveals two-thirds of the 774 million illiterates in the world is female.

Despite transformation in the last decade, millions of girls are still denied right to education, more than 62 million girls around the world have no access to education. Of these 17 million are expected never to see nor sit in the four walls of schools. Several countries have millions of girls out of school: In Nigeria, there are almost five and a half million of them, many of them missing out on the chance to learn vital skills for employment and livelihood.

Worldwide, girls ages 5 to 14 spend more than 160 million hours more on household chores. To achieve gender equality and other SDGs, many now recognize that it is essential to support and invest in girls.

Girls deserve better and because they deserve better, the 1.1 billion girls of today’s world are beginning to challenge the status quo. The World Bank opines that girls with education grow into women who “tend to be healthier, participate more in the formal labour market, earn higher incomes, have fewer children with better health care and education.”

A substantial number of young girls in the world face various challenges that are often overlooked. Some of the risks include child marriage, early pregnancy, unsafe abortion, HIV and other STIs and genital mutilation to mention a few.

The United Nations Population Fund estimates that 100 million to 140 million girls and women have undergone genital mutilation with another 3 million at risk of the practice every year.

Skills for girls are one of the best strategies for protecting girls against child marriage. UNESCO notes that 116 million women across developing countries worldwide have never completed primary school, while two-thirds of the illiterate population worldwide is female.

With 5.5million girls out of school and without skills, Nigeria leads Africa in gender inequality. 2018 records about 12 million girls under 18 will be married, and 21 million girls aged 15 to 19 years will become pregnant even in developing nations.

Nigeria, with her workforce of about 77 million people, accounts for about 42% of the total population. Between 2014 and 2015, over four million young Nigerians entered the labour market, experiencing a growth of 53% between 2011 and 2015.

However, The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) opines that Nigeria is losing out on a literate and skilled workforce, many thanks to the huge number of out of school children.

The world needs to begin to realize that girls’ education has a huge impact on all societies. Research reveals that skilled female is more likely to find work; are less likely to have children at an early age; skilled girls can save millions of lives: If all women are skilled, there would be 15% fewer child deaths.

Skilled women are less likely to die in childbirth: If all mothers completed primary education, maternal deaths would be reduced by two-thirds, saving 98,000 lives

Girls with higher levels of skills are less likely to get married at an early age, with 14% fewer child marriages.

Gender gap raises some fine questions. Why are boys more valued than girls? For the fact that  age, income, culture, ethnicity and other intersecting factors are not often times factored, then gender must be treated as such, SDG5 must come to play and stay globally.

The world could begin by drawing attention and invest on the most pressing need which is creating opportunities for girls to embrace several skills for an established SKILLED GIRL FORCE.

To have a SKILLED GIRL FORCE, the world must invest and expand access to inclusive skills aside the job and educational skills, skills like professionalism, organizational, leadership and management, team building, analytical, life-skills and personal life skills all of these put together are believed would mold and transform them into an effective and productive FORCE today and tomorrow.

BEDROCK OF SOCIETY

BEDROCK OF SOCIETY

Today (May 15) is the International Family Day, NNNGO’s Ilori Olaife, NNNGO’s Communications Officer, provides her thoughts on the situation families around the world. All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the author and does not necessarily reflect NNNGOs opinion.


Thursday, May 15, is World Family Day, a global initiative by the United Nations General Assembly to draw attention to the various problems facing the family. The day reflects the importance the international community attaches to families globally.
This year’s observance of the International Day of Families focuses on the role of families and family-oriented policies in promoting early childhood education, the overall well-being of their members and raising awareness of the role and importance of the institution.

Family constitutes basic unit of the society, we are born into them and some of the most important developing years of lives are spent growing up with families. Family consists of parents rearing their children and it is out of this group that broader communities grow, such as tribes, villages, people, and nations. Families are strongest and healthiest when everyone is empowered to access health care, acquire an education, contribute to their homes and communities and realize their full potentials.

In recent years, researchers who study the structure and evolution of families express unsullied astonishment at how rapidly the family has changed all over the world. The transformation has exceeded predictions of presumed layout.

In Africa, Nigeria, the fate is no different; homes are becoming more segregated with each passing day. There is no connection between spouses, parent-children and siblings, this, sadly might in turn breed bad blood especially when parents become oblivion to the day-to-day activities of such children. Most of the recorded incidences of domestic violence, child molestation, abduction of girls and lack of proper education are as a result of these dysfunctional family backgrounds. Our traditional family cohesion and bond are weakened due to daily life challenges of trying to make ends meet.

The era of a nuclear family, with a dad who went to work and the mom who stayed at home, has declined to the point of no return. Today, family is no longer what it used to be, in the bid to provide extensively for needs, family standards have regrettably gone into extinction, many thanks to several financial needs that cry for attention. Globally, more than 240 million people live outside their countries of birth. And half of them are women risking everything in pursuit of a brighter future for themselves and their children.

Alarmingly, the number of women who are their families’ sole breadwinner has soared to 40 percent today from 11% in 1960. According to some data, more than 80% of children in Asia and the Middle East live with two parents, In America; two-parent households are somewhat less prevalent. However, two-parent pattern is more mixed in sub-Saharan Africa, ranging widely from 36% in South Africa to 78% in Nigeria. Some of the children living with two parents are in households that are also included as extended family.

One change that has caught many family researchers by surprise was the recent dip in the divorce rate after many decades of upward march, followed by a long stay at 50%, however the rate began falling in 1996 and is now just above 40% for first-time marriages.  The decline has been even more striking amongst wealthy couples with sound education. Less than one in three marriages is expected to end in divorce. It is indeed disheartening!

Lest we forget that FAMILY is one of society’s oldest and most resilient institutions. Although the structure of the family may vary around the world, the value of family still and must by all means endure. ‘Hosea Balon Farr’ a spiritual leader says: “Education commences at mothers knee, and every word spoken within the hearsay of little children should tend towards the formation of character”.

As a matter of urgency and in spite of the demanding pace of life, parents must by all means teach children worthy morals cum finding time to reconnect with families for living schedules can become hectic and so there must arise the need to slow down and spend time with families and in turn children must be worthy AMBASSADORS of their family tree. A hug, a smile would go a long way in boosting the morale of family members. A HAPPY FAMILY IS A HAPPY SOCIETY, A HAPPY SOCIETY IS A HAPPY NATION AND A HAPPY NATION IS A HAPPY WORLD.

Kicking Out Malaria

Kicking Out Malaria

As the world celebrates the world malaria day, our Communications Officer Olaife Ilori provides staggering statistics and updates on the progress made so far to build a malaria free world.

One of the Sustainable Development Goals is to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages and in keeping up with this goal THE MOSQUITOES are thus making it seemingly impossible with their overtly schemed route to ensuring that this one goal does not see the light of day.

Malaria is a life-threatening blood disease caused by parasites transmitted to humans through the bite of the Anopheles mosquito. Once an infected mosquito bites a human and transmits the parasites, those parasites multiply in the host’s liver before infecting and destroying red blood cells.

When an infected mosquito bites a human host, the parasite enters the bloodstream and lays dormant within the liver. For the next 5 to 16 days, the host will show no symptoms but the malaria parasite will begin multiplying asexually. The new malaria parasites are then released into the bloodstream when the red blood cells are infected and begin to multiply again. Some malaria parasites, however, remain in the liver and are not released until later, resulting in recurrence upon an unaffected mosquito being infected once it feeds on an infected individual, and the cycle begins again with the readied symptoms which include cold sensation, shivering, fever, headaches, vomiting, sweats followed by a return to normal temperature, with tiredness.

Globally, an estimated 214 million cases of malaria occur annually and 3.2 billion people are at risk of infection. Approximately 438,000 deaths were attributed to malaria in 2015, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, where an estimated 90% of all malaria deaths occur. Upon this record, malaria remains still one of the most severe global public health problems worldwide, particularly in Africa, where Nigeria has the greatest number of malaria cases.

Nigeria, suffering from the world’s greatest malaria burden, with approximately 51 million cases and 207,000 deaths reported annually (approximately 30% of the total malaria burden in Africa), while 97% of the total population (roughly 173 million) is at risk of massive infection. Malaria accounts for 60% of outpatient visits to hospitals which always lead to 11% maternal mortality and 30% child mortality, especially among children less than 5 years. This devastating disease affects the country’s economic productivity, resulting in an estimated monetary loss of about 132 billion Naira in treatment costs, prevention, and other indirect costs.

Since 2000, malaria prevention has played an important role in reducing cases and deaths, primarily through the scale up of insecticide-treated nets and indoor spraying with insecticides. In 2008, the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP) in Nigeria adopted a specific plan, the goal of which is to reduce 50% of the malaria burden by 2013 by achieving at least 80% coverage of long-lasting mosquito nets together with other measures, such as 20% of houses in targeted areas receiving Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS), and treatment with two doses of intermittent preventative therapy (IPT) for pregnant women who visit antenatal care clinics. To this effect, the percentage of households with at least one mosquito nets increased to over 70% by 2010, compared to 5% in 2008 with a high rate coming from Kano State, North Central Nigeria.

While in 2015 across other parts of Sub Saharan Africa, an estimated 53% of the population at risk reportedly slept under a treated net compared to 30% in 2010 together with the preventive treatment for pregnant woman.

malaria

According to the latest estimates from WHO, many countries with ongoing malaria transmission have reduced their disease burden significantly. On a global scale, new malaria cases fell by 21% between 2010 and 2015, the death rates fell by 29%. Be that as it may, the pace of progress must be greatly accelerated upon this, WHO’s Global Technical Strategy for Malaria has thus called for a 40% reduction in malaria cases and deaths by 90% by year 2030, compared to the 2015 estimation.

2017 is recording a slow and steady progress as it were and with this year’s global theme which is End Malaria for Good, it is indeed hoped that Malaria will be ended for good.