The Founder of Rochas Foundation, Sen. Rochas Okoroacha, has launched a Teach a Child/Sponsor a Child Project (TAC-SAC), aimed at targeting one million out-of-school children and bring them to school.
Okoroacha made this known at the unveiling of the project in Abuja on Tuesday.
He joined the rest of the world to mark the 2023 International Day of Education and called on well-meaning Nigerians to get involved in reducing the high number of out-of-school children.
He said that the country owed it a responsibility to give every Nigerian child and unborn children the right education for their liberation.
“In Africa, we have over 50 million out-of-school children and Nigeria has 13.5 million out of this figure; if we have one million people who can actually teach or sponsor a child, we will be better for it.
“In Nigeria, we have built political parties, hotels, Churches and Mosques but we have not built factories that manufacture dreams and aspirations.
” When I look back some 20 years ago, my thought is that education should be better by now.
“We have over 200 million people in Nigeria, out of this figure, if we can have one million Nigerians who can actually teach and sponsor children, then we will not be having the problem of out-of-school children.
He, therefore, said that the project would be a volunteering and mentorship programme that would take all out-of-school children back to school by 2050.
Meanwhile, the Director-General of the foundation, Miss Uchechi Rochas said that the greatest investment any nation could give was investing in the people to make other sectors productive.
Rochas said that with the unveiling of the TAC-SAC project, it would gain the involvement of stakeholders in all sectors to tackle the out-of-school children menace.
“As a nation, we have lost the spirit of volunteerism which has brought about 13.5 million children not to be in school.
“An uneducated child is one who showed up at your door step for a robbery attack, an uneducated child is one used for terrorism .
“The entre problem of this country can be stopped with education because if we empower these 13. 5 million children, we have empowered 13.5 million families.
” If you look at these numbers, female children have the large part of it. Therefore, it is important we get the children into the classrooms because if you empower the girl child, you empower the nation,” she said.
One of the old students of the foundation, Mr Patrick Odey said that lack of political will was hindering the reduction of out-of-school children.
Odey called on the private sectors to show commitment to encourage government to do more in education.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that on Dec. 3, 2018, the the General Assembly of the United Nations voted to declare January 24 as the International Day of Education.
This resolution was co-authored by Nigeria and the other 58 member nations, and its passage showed the unwavering political support for changing policies to ensure fair and high-quality education for all.
The day is celebrated around the world and is observed to remind people of the importance of education.
The theme of this year’s celebration is: “To invest in People, Priotise Education”.