The Southern zone of Adamawa state has for long been the subject of the ravages of the notorious Islamic sect, Boko Haram.
The activity of the group has destroyed government structures, properties, educational facilities, residential houses, and claimed thousands of lives.
In the past one and half year, the activities of the insurgent group has been considerably degraded and most of the displaced persons are now finding their way home, only to greeted to ugly debris of what they once called homes now shattered, school infrastructure gone and their local economy also gone.
Most of the returnees have started rebuilding their lives from the cradle, wondering though where to start their journey back to recovery from.
Of paramount significance is that the returnees children are crouching under trees to learn, or in dilapidated classrooms, with little or absent teaching and instructional facilities.
The Adamawa State Universal Basic Education working with UNICEF has initiated a process designed to renovate schools in the seven local government areas worst hit by insurgency as education is said to be one of the most affected sectors in these areas.
UNICEF in collaboration with the Adamawa State Universal Basic Education Board have organized a four day workshop with stakeholders drawn from the worst hit Local Government Areas of Michika, Mubi North, Mubi South, Madagali, Maiha, Gombi and Hong Local Government Areas.
The team leader of the workshop, Abdulahi Usman, the team leader of the workshop said, “The main aim of organizing the workshop is to enlighten the stakeholders including Health workers, head teachers, community leaders and religious leaders on the most effective way to move the community forward with a specific attention on the educational system.
Mr. Abdullahi said, “The participants will be trained to see school infrastructure provided in their community by government as their community’s property and to protect the Educational facilities so that their children will have the same opportunity to go to school like every child in the country has.”
Abdullahi said, “The Adamawa state Government is concerned with the deplorable state of educational infrastructures in the southern zone of the state, hence its partnership with UNICEF towards reviving the ailing state of education in the area.”
Some of the participants interviewed Yusuf Jauro a village head in Mubi, and Aisha Wapa a health worker in Maiha said, “The was illuminating and they have taken the challenge of promoting cause of health and education in their local communities and promised to put into good use the knowledge acquired in the workshop.
UNICEF Education Specialist, Mairama Dikwa said, “The training is part of the collaboration with Health sector and under the European Union – Maternal, New born, Child Health and Nutrition (EU-MNCHN) project being implemented by UNICEF in Adamawa, Bauchi and Kebbi States.
“with the aim of strengthening community resilience for improved Maternal Newborn, Child Health and Nutrition.
Mairama explained that, “In Adamawa, the training involved 400 School Based Management Committee members, 7 Education Secretaries, 7 heads of mobilization and 7 school supervisors from 40 schools, towards Safe Schools Initiative Project (TSSIP) being implemented in the 7 affected LGAs.
“The training is equally part of the convergence efforts being promoted by UNICEF to ensure package of interventions are provided to same locations so as to assess the impact on the lives of the people.”
The workshop will also seek to train SBMCs to raise awareness on MNCHN messages and birth registration and to ensure that when they go back, they make school pupils become promoters of MNCHN key messages at communities (through SBMCs)
At the end of the training, SBMCs were tasked develop simple school plans that integrate MNCHN and Birth Registration activities in schools.
SBMCs are expected to implement the plans which will be monitored and reported by the school supervisors and the heads of mobilization.