A group, Feminist Coalition, has decried the high rate of the out-of-school girls in the country and expressed its readiness to sponsor over 70 girls through secondary school education in six years.
The coalition, which quoted British Council Report, 2014, that over 40% of Nigeria women have never received a formal education, stated that on its part, it is sponsporing 12 girls’ education at Vivian Fowler Memorial College for Girls.
In a statement issued to herald the virtual launch of ‘The Feminist Coalition Girls Education Program’, the Co-founder of the coalition, Damilola Odufuwa, said her group believed that girls have rights to access quality education.
She said: “The Feminist Coalition believes it is every girl’s right to access quality education. Women’s rights & safety is one of three pillars of our work and, undoubtedly, girls’ education is a space we are committed to working within, for the protection and advancement of Nigerian women.
“This is why we decided to start the Feminist Coalition Girls Education Program. An annual full scholarship & mentorship program for brilliant young girls from low-income backgrounds in Nigeria, whose largest barrier to a quality education is financial.
“In July 2021, we reached out to Teach For Nigeria, a non-profit committed to ending educational inequity across the country. Teach for Nigeria was integral in selecting the right students for this opportunity. Together, we shortlisted 40 students from Ogun State to participate in an entrance examination.
“Of the 40 students, the top 20 from the examination were selected for an interview with members of the Feminist Coalition and our chosen school for the Girls Education Program. We decided to partner with Vivian Fowler Memorial College for Girls, one of the leading all-girls schools in Nigeria, known to offer not just academic guidance to their students, but also a balanced education that enables students to cope with life and create fulfilling careers.
“Of the 20 students who were interviewed, 12 were selected for the Feminist Coalition Girls Education Program, and we will now fund their entire secondary school education at Vivian Fowler Memorial College for Girls.
“With support from members of the Feminist Coalition and a our incredible volunteers, the 12 girls resumed at Vivian Fowler Memorial College on Saturday Sept 11, 2021.The scholarship provided by the Feminist Coalition not only includes full tuition payments, but also covers the boarding house fees, co-curricular activities, examination fees and other necessary school requirements and logistics.
“At the height of the program, we will have a batch of girls in each year of secondary school. In 6 years, we are aiming to have sponsored the secondary school education of over 70 girls in the country.Annually, we are selecting girls with outstanding academic performances from low-income communities in Nigeria.”