By Damiete Braide
A non-governmental organisation, A Mother’s Love Initiative (AMLi), has advocated the abolishment of the “hurried child syndrome” in African communities, starting from Nigeria, even as it joined the world, last week, to commemorate the fifth United Nations International Day of Education, often celebrated on January 24th.
It noted that the syndrome has saturated homes, workplaces and communities in a seemingly unconscious manner, consequently, leading to several topical issues facing Nigerian children, youths and adults in the present day.
Every year, the United Nations throws a challenge at global leaders, particularly African leaders, to ensure that youths access quality and affordable education that would groom, prepare and provide Africa with quality leaders that would promote social, national and economic development to position the continent for global business competitiveness.
Founder of AMLi, Hanatu Enwemadu, said, since the launch of “Hurried Child Syndrome” in Lagos, in November 2021, the organisation has increased the awareness and level of engagement at the national level to ensure that every home is aware and sensitized on the need to stop the practice of hurrying children through life, particularly education and other life-long skills.
In her words: “The foundation is saddled with the responsibilities of providing preventive and remedial interventions to individuals and families raising a child to ensure that the child is stable and balanced in order to make the child useful for self, family and the community, resulting in the rebirth of hope for a happy future.”
Enwemadu said that “hurried child syndrome” has influences and its associated consequences on the economic and social development of Nigeria society and Africa at large.”
She said that one of the objectives of AMLi is to push for serious advocacy against the total elimination of “hurried child syndrome” in Africa. In this year’s International Day of Education, Enwemadu warned parents against the syndrome and exposed them to the benefits as well the consequences of it to the life of a child.
However, speaking on the importance of education to national development, she said that education is a human right, a public good, and a public responsibility, and Nigeria should not miss it.
In line with this year’s International Day of Education theme, “to invest in people, prioritize education,” Enwemadu said that since the role of education in society cannot be over-emphasized, especially in developing countries like Nigeria, government should endeavour to invest in the citizens mostly youths and prioritize education which is the easiest way for national development.
Continuing, she said, “This year’s International Day of Education should serve as a reminder to the Nigerian leadership and Africa as a whole, to ensure that millions of children and youths who dropped out of school are helped back to school, even as she encourages non-profit organisations and private institutions to play a role towards reducing the high level of illiteracy affecting Africa’s development.
Enwemadu warned that the only way to achieve the goal is by playing down gender inequality. “The girl child should have equal rights to education and other benefits.
AMLi advocates strongly for quality, accessible education and a better lifestyle for African children as one of its responsibilities”.
She further advocated that education must be prioritized to accelerate progress toward all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations now and in the future.