By Aisha Tamba
The acting country director of ChildFund The Gambia has revealed that its one-year sponsorship programme catered more than 15,000 enrolled children from July 2019- July 2020.
Nafamara Dabo was speaking at the annual signing ceremony of agreement with its three local partners Foni Ding Ding Federation, Saama Kairo Federation and Ding Ding Yiriwaa Federation.
Nafamara said the agreement outlines the implementation of programmes worth over 100 million dalasi.
“I wish to reiterate our commitment and readiness to working with both our traditional and technical partners to ensure that every child in this country realize their dreams and reach their full potential. Together, we can make The Gambia a safe haven for her children.
In line with our dovetailing of sponsorship and programs, we have supplied 2000 bikes to needy and deserving children to enable them get to and from school on time and more crucially minimize the child protection risks they face to and from school. This is a part of a grand plan of giving out 10,000 bikes to Gambian children. In addition to these, ChildFund through its local partners also provided tens of thousands of learning materials such as exercise books and school bags to children in our programming.
“These developments are indicative of the high premium we attach to the education sector. Furthermore, as far as this sector is concerned, I am happy to state that it was during this year that we launched an education and child protection project called DREAM READER. Operating in all the five districts in Foni and targeting primary school children, this project which came courtesy of ChildFund Korea is seeking to enhance the reading and writing skills of children in grades 4, 5 and 6,” he furthered.
He highlighted that in the area of health, ChildFund has also in the past year boosted the country’s Ministry of Health with two 20-foot containers on two separate occasions loaded with highly sought-after medical supplies and pharmaceuticals. “These items that are brought in the country through the guidance and approval of the health ministry have enhanced health care delivery for people across the different regions. This is of course different from the health facilities or community clinics we helped stock with medicaments through our Local Partners,” he elaborated.
He thanked the government of the Gambia for availing an environment that allows ChildFund to operate and reach out to thousands of children, their families and communities.
The deputy permanent secretary, basic education ministry, Adama Jimba Jobe expressed delight and gratitude adding that without ChildFund many children would have been wandering in the streets.
Rohie Bittay-Darboe, permanent secretary, women’s ministry, emphasised that the ceremony speaks volumes about the commitment of ChildFund in ensuring that Gambian children and their families are accorded a gamut of life-changing services in a holistic manner.