• Friday, July 12, 2024
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10 teachers in Nigeria, others win grant to improve education in Africa

Acknowledging teachers’ unwavering commitment to the society

No fewer than 10 teachers from Nigeria and other parts of Sub-Saharan Africa have emerged winners in the Muhammad Sanusi II Sustainable Development Goals (MSII SDG) Initiative challenge and have been awarded grants to scale up their innovative education projects for improved education in the region.

The MSII SDG Initiative, a non for profit organization recently held its SDG Challenge Showcase for Cohort 2 which had 25 finalists with innovative projects from eight African countries to include Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and The Gambia, of which 10 teachers emerged winners and awarded $10,000.

The MS11 SDG aims at empowering teachers to provide inclusive education and drive innovative community projects to overcome challenges facing education in Sub-Saharan Africa. The project addresses a wide range of issues to include disability, displacement, access to learning materials, girls health, digital skills and more.

Mohammed Sanusi II, United Nations SDG advocate and initiator of the MSII SDG Challenge, speaking at the virtual event to announce the winners, said Sub-Saharan Africa and the rest of the continent is facing several education challenges. He noted that Africa’s youth population would be almost half of the youths population globally, but raised concerns on the quality of youths the continent is churning out and the skills they would possess.

In Nigeria, Sanusi decried that despite education being free and compulsory, about 10.5 children between the ages of 5-14 are not in school. He also said only 35.6 percent of children receive early childhood education of children aged 3 to 5, and the picture is bleaker in the north.

The advocate stressed the need to ensure improved completion rate at all levels of education and improve quality of education. According to him, “It is only by empowering teachers that we can implement solutions that will transform our educational system. There cannot be quality education if the teachers do not have the competence to impact students positively.”

“Teacher quality is a major determinant of children’s learning and wellbeing. They are a powerful force, each teacher will impact a minimum of 3,000 students in their career directly. Africa has all it needs to transform the education system”, he added.

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He informed that the MSII SDG challenge has so far empowered 2,000 teachers, over 30, 000 children; and projects to impact thousands more through its various programmes.

Seth Warren, chief executive officer of the initiative said the initiative aims to empower 10,000 teachers, enable 1500 innovative pilots and impact more than 5 million students through scalable and transformative solutions.

“We offer programming support to many teachers with unique ideas, we take high impact ideas from passionate founders and provide the tools they need to create widespread sustainable change. We do this through a five programme structure, open e learning, pre incubation, incubation, acceleration and partnership,” the CEO explained.

He informed that the 10 winning projects won based on their scalability, sustainability and impact, and the winners will be offered a place in the accelerator programme as well as additional funding.

The winners include; Alero Thompson (Tech Fingers), Zenaida Odimegwu ( The Eduvate Initiative), Joseph Ogbonnaya (The ‘project sportive’ Initiative), Patricia Uma ( Ilearn Literacy) for Category 1, Gloria Ifeyinwa Ayogu (Kiddie Press Club), McDonald Nguluwe (Green Sound Project), Wallace Maguma Tort (Education through Agriculture) for Category 2, and Olajumoke Adebisi (Pad Innovation Project), Mufida Bashir Isyaku (Refugees and Displaced Persons Support), Oluwabunmi Anani (Quality Education for all) for Category 3.