Awardees commit to do more for Nigeria at Everyone campaign close out

Thursday 17 March 2016

By James Bigila, Media Coordinator

Recently Save the children Nigeria hosted partners, representatives from state governments and stakeholders who contributed towards the success of the Everyone Campaign in Nigeria.

Save the Children launched the EVERY ONE Campaign in October 2009. It was aimed at catalyzing, by 2015, a breakthrough in governments’ “policy and practice that dramatically accelerate sustainable progress towards MDGs 4 and 5”.

With the launch of the everyone campaign in 2009, its impact and successes were recorded in Zamfara, Jigawa, Gombe, Katsina States in Northern Nigeria and Abuja the Federal Capital territory with a major break through achieved with the Nigerian parliament passing into law in 2014, the National health Bill which later received the accent of the then Nigerian President, Former President Goodluck Jonathan who signed it into law.

Country Director, Ben Foot with some awardees from the states of operation for Save the Children Nigeria

The campaign in Nigeria proper started in 2010 with investiture of three celebrities – Joke Silva, John Fashanu and Sani Danja.

Another breakthrough for the campaign was ensuring that there is a skilled Health worker available to every child wherever s/he lives in Nigeria within 30 minutes of need or within 2 kilometers – in Nigeria, SC selected a Human Resources for Health (HRH) Champion who supported our campaign particularly at the National level and International levels.

Speaking during the Everyone campaign close out and award ceremony, the Country Director Mr Ben Foot in his welcome remarks expressed delight at having almost everyone who contributed to the success of the campaign attend the event.

He said “When we go back to 2009, when this campaign started and come up to today, we can see, major changes in a number of areas in Nigeria.” He said prior to 2001, Save the Children had not been known in Nigeria, But today, there has been major improvements in our programmes compared to when Save the Children Nigeria was set up in 2001. He congratulated all awardees and staff who contributed to the success of the Everyone campaign in Nigeria.

Since 2012, Save the Children has been campaigning for budget lines for Nutrition at National and subnational levels with varying degrees of success.

In Katsina State Nigeria, the campaign led to the State Government appropriating and releasing funds to tackle Malnutrition in the State.

A short movie acted by Students of Junior Government Secondary School Gwagwalada Abuja, was played to the audience in which Nigeria was put on trial and sentenced to 15 years for not doing enough to alleviate the sufferings of the Nigerian Children in areas of education, protection and health.

Also speaking at the event, Dr. David Olayemi, the Director of Advocacy and Campaigns  took the audience through the key milestones achieved during the period of the Everyone campaign in Nigeria. He said the campaign was aimed at catalyzing, by 2015, a breakthrough in governments’ “policy and practice that dramatically accelerate sustainable progress towards MDGs 4 and 5”.

He said, “among the key milestones achieved while working with partners like Health Reform foundation of Nigeria (HERFON) and under the leadership of National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Save the children supported a number of states by training them and in supporting them to understand the connection between National Health Act and Primary Health Care Under one Roof. We have also trained some states in how to manage Primary Health care Reforms.”

One of the Awardees at the event, Dr. Mrs Ngozi Azodoh expressed commitment towards the work of Save the Children in Nigeria. She mentioned previous partnerships and meetings she has had while working with Save the Children and some achievements that have been made in Nigeria’s health sector during the period of the Everyone campaign.

Dr. Mrs Ngozi Azodoh pledged to work with Save the Children in her capacity as the Director of Planning and Statistics in the ministry to contribute more towards the development of the Nigerian health sector in partnership with Save the Children.

Some of the awardees at the event included Mr. Joshua Afolabi, the Vice Principal for Government Secondary School Kuchingoro, Mr Muhammad Qabasiyu, the former Permanent Secretary for Ministry of Health, Zamfara State, Dr. Mrs Ngozi Azodoh, the Director for Planning, Research and Statistics at Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Health, the Minister of Environment, Hon Mrs Amina Mohammed, Mrs. Catherine Ojo, Chief Nursing officer at Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Kaduna State,  Rev. Fr. Evaristus Bassey, the Executive Director, Catholic Caritas Foundation of Nigeria, Mrs Maryam Uwais, the Special Adviser to the President on Child protection e.t.c

Save the Children launched the five year global EVERY ONE campaign (2010 – 2015) as part of its contribution to save the lives of millions of children who were dying of preventable causes, and subsequently help achieve Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 4 by 2015.

Within the implementation period, Save the Children achieved some spectacular results and received tremendous support for the campaign from both state and non-state actors; forged new partnerships with other organizations, and reached millions of people in our campaign for:
• A health worker in reach of every child
• Vaccines for all children – no matter where they live
• A child free from hunger and malnutrition

The goal of the Everyone campaign was MDG 4 – a two thirds reduction in Child Mortality rates by 2015 – is achieved and MDG 5.

Mr. Muhammad Qabasiyu, an awardee in his closing remarks appreciated the work of Save the Children in Katsina State and in Nigeria and also pledged to support the work of Save the Children.