By Onozure Dania
Nigerians have been enjoined to be selfless, show concern for the plight of the poor and give back to the society.
This was the theme at the 10th anniversary of Arise Education Scholarship Foundation, AESF, held, at Kada Cinema and Entertainment Centre, in Benin City, Edo State.
In his keynote address, Founder, AESF, Mr Rex Osagiede, said that the foundation which was borne out of the passion to provide an enabling environment for young under privileged children has over the years, served as a “bridge between the haves and haves-not, a platform of love, as well as the dream and light of tomorrow.”
He enjoined people to think beyond their primary responsibility and reach out to someone, as that was the only way to show love and build this nation.
He remarked that Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King had dreams which came to pass and that he sees Arise going higher and higher, adding that it was a time of consolidation and a resolve to stay the course, move forward and wax stronger.
One of the major sponsors, Nehizena Uyiekpen, a United Kingdom-based HSBC Consultant, in her remark, said people in that part of the world take education for granted because it is free up to secondary school level.
She noted that however in this part of the world, people struggle to get educated. She said having been blessed by God, she needed to give back to other people saying “I am giving back to where my parents came from, where they started.”
She appealed to all to reach out, noting “It is not one man that raises a child, but a village; the future is not far, the future begins today.”
She thanked the children for being committed to their studies saying you have done exceptionally well.
State Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Ms Osayuware Idahosa, said for the governor, the basis was all about getting it right, adding “Without sound education, we are going nowhere.
“Special interest is being paid to technical education because, the governor believes skill are needed for the industries,” adding that in a short while, everyone will begin to see the transformation in Benin Technical college.
“Doing it right will take the state to the next level, there will be more infrastructural development and pedagogical training for teachers.”
Highlight of the event was presentation of awards to deserving sponsors, partnering schools and the state Ministry of education.
Edo College, Benin City, Model Girls School, Ubiaja and Federal Science Technical College, Uromi, were given outstanding Service Award , for creating a conducive environment for the success of Arise Education Scholarship Foundation.
On behalf of the state government, Edo State Ministry of Education received an award for the transformation of educational infrastructure across the state.
There were cultural performances by pupils of Ogbe and Ezoti primary schools as well as a brief presentation by past and present beneficiaries of AESF.
Present at the ceremony amongst others were, Alhaji Horace Osaze Omorogbe, Dr Patrick Okundia, Dr Odaro Ize-Omoregie, Mrs Celina Osagiede, parents, teachers, Students and pupils from a number of secondary and primary schools.
AESF serves as a link between deserving needy children and prospective sponsors for educational support.