Our Children and COVID; the biggest victims

Children’s Day in Nigeria is marked on 27 May. The date on which Children’s day is observed varies from country to country as the United Nations (UN) General Assembly prescribed that countries have autonomy to decide on a suitable day to celebrate children. Irrespective of the chosen date, the purpose remains to promote awareness about children’s rights, togetherness, and improving children’s welfare!

Children’s Day has been celebrated in Nigeria since 1964 as a national public holiday, for primary and secondary school pupils/students with activities centered around them.

World Children’s Day, however, is celebrated on 20 November every year and was first established in 1954 as ‘Universal Children’s Day.   This year, Saturday 20 November 2021 will be observed as Children’s day with the theme “Investing in our future means investing in our children”, as provided by the United Nations. 

One of the objectives for setting aside this day is to promote global awareness, togetherness and improvement in children’s welfare worldwide. The day is just international observance and not a public holiday. It is. 

Children’s Day always offers an opportunity to promote and celebrate children’s rights thereby building a better future for them. These rights are embodied in the Declaration of the Rights of the Child adopted by the UN General Assembly in November 1959, while on 20 November 1989, the assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Since 1990, the anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child has been marked as Children’s Day. 

The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a child rights’ crisis because like every other person, their lives were impacted by the harmful effects of this pandemic, and for many, the impact might be lifelong.

The challenges of disrupting education and restricting movement added to the plight of our children, who also had to make so many mental and educational adjustments virtually overnight. According to UNICEF, “188 countries imposed countrywide school closures during the pandemic, affecting more than 1.6 billion children and youth”. This situation just heightened the existing educational crisis affecting school children in under-developed countries.

As parents, securing a better future for our children, is by investing in their future now.

At FirstBank, children education has been at the core of our values. First Bank of Nigeria limited, during the lockdown across Nigeria, early in 2020 announced that thousands of students signed up and had access to the e-learning solutions provided for free (in partnership with Roducate and Lagos State Government). FirstBank will continue to support and will not relent on such interventions in line with its corporate mandate to put you first!

For more information on how FirstBank can help support you & your children for their education and financial literacy needs, and other services on how you can open a suitable bank account, please visit; www.firstbanknigeria.com/e-learing to access the Roducate e-learning, powered by FirstBank for free.

Image source: SHUTTERSTOCK

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