As part of its service to humanity, NNPC/SheIl Nigeria Exploration & Production Company (SNEPCO) in partnership with The Irede Foundation (TIF) is providing five (5) prosthetic limbs to four (4) children with Limbs loss in Lagos.
The project titled: “Back To School project” sponsored by NNPC/SNEPCo and implemented by The Irede Foundation was the fifth in a series, aimed to support children living with limb loss and reducing the number of out-of-school children with disabilities through the provision of prosthetic limbs for indigent child amputees.
At the hand-over session in Lagos recently, the Executive Director of IREDE Foundation, Mrs Crystal Chigbu, whose joy knew no bounds, appreciated the NNPC/SNEPCo for 5 years of consistently supporting the Foundation’s Champions (limbs beneficiaries). She noted that the project simultaneously provided child amputees inclusion and access to live their life to the fullest through advocacy and disability awareness.
“We are pleased to see how well our young children are doing in school. Their school results are commendable. Now, they are happy to be back with their schoolmates and are learning with confidence. That’s so heartwarming!
“Since we set out in 2018, the focus has been to reduce the number of out-of-school children with disabilities through the provision of prosthetic limbs for indigent child amputees. They supported us by boosting an enabling and inclusive learning environment for children with disabilities by educating children enrolled in public schools across Lagos & Port Harcourt and by increasing their disability awareness through the distribution of the IREDIANS Comic book, and they also contributed to the 2022 Out on A Limb advocacy walk,”
Chigbu called for support from the government on the urgent demand for better management of limb loss, limb differences, fractures, and the social integration of Persons with disability.
“This kind of support is helping these Champs get a better start in life, as the organization started supporting most of the champs when they were really young, and it’s been such a delight watching them grow”
She added that the foundation would not give up on encouraging children living with limb loss (either acquired or congenital) to live a life of fulfilment in line with its mandate to inspire actions so that child amputees, their families and caregivers can live independent and limitless lives; through the provision of prosthetic limbs to child amputees from ages 0-18. Disability advocacy, support groups for caregivers, and skills development training for PLDs are must-dos for the foundation.
“TIF is a place where children without limbs are encouraged to live their best lives, regardless of the absence of a limb (or limbs). The Foundation has grown to be a source of motivation and encouragement for families with these challenges, a calm voice during the raging storm that says, “You can live happily if you choose to” she maintained.
In a remark, the Managing Director of NNPC/SNEPCo, Mrs Elohor Aiboni, represented by Mrs Adegoke Areje, said she was particularly delighted to see children with Limbs loss living and making progress after receiving artificial limbs.
According to her, the company was happy to see the children doing well in school. She revealed that beyond providing four limbs, the oil firm has been in the vanguard championing advocacy, and equipping school children with the requisite information and skills they need to further support their fellow students living with limb disabilities.
“We shall not be tired of offering this kind gestures to these fellow citizens. We are aware that investment in health, education and economic development are the most important investments a country can make, and when an organization prioritizes this in children through its social investment, it should be applauded to reduce the number of out-of-school children with disabilities through the provision of prosthetic limbs for indigent child amputees,” she asseverated.
Similarly, the Secretary of The Irede Foundation’s Board of Trustees, Azubuike Chigbu, whose daughter was the reason (why) the foundation was set up, revealed getting a limb was not an easy task, saying, “Looking at the economic situation today, a limb is not Less than N2m or 2.5m. We look forward to partner other organizations in this journey of giving hope to these special children,” he posited.
More so, a representative of the Group General Manager (GGM) of National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) Mrs Tolulope Derin-Adefuwa, admonished beneficiaries to remain steadfast and determined to make an impact on humanity. “You are here to impact your world. I urged parents with children without Limbs not to give up either. NAPIMS shall continue to give support as it’s necessary,” she averred.
Mrs Blessing is the mother of one of the beneficiaries (Perry Odigie) who expressed joy, and prayed for the sponsors and supporters of such deeds, saying, “The Founder of Irede is a ‘small god’. She is wonderful. Sent by The Almighty God for people like us. Even when she’s not in the country, through the phone she tells us what to do. There’s nothing God cannot do. He uses humans to help humans. In every condition, there is hope for living. I believe these our children will grow to also replicate these gestures to those who would need similar help,” she affirmed.
This year, NNPC/SNEPCo partnership touched on 3 investment support viz:
Sending four (4) beneficiaries back to school through the provision of five (5) prosthetic limbs; enabled an inclusive learning environment for children with disability by educating 670 children enrolled in public schools across Lagos & Port Harcourt by increasing their disability awareness through the distribution of the IREDIANS Comic book; and with a direct reach of over 1,000 people.
This year’s champions – Lekan Olusesi, Perry Odigie and Adejumo AbdulKhalid, among others – will receive new prosthetic limbs.
NNPC/SNPECo has contributed to the 2022 Out On A Limb advocacy walk; by educating the public and calling for the support of the government on the urgent demand for better management of limb loss, limb differences, fractures, and the social integration of persons with disability.