The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has unveiled a new country program to advocate and enhance Child Rights in Nigeria.
UNICEF Communication Specialist, Dr. Geoffrey Njoku disclosed this on Thursday, March 23, 2023 at a 2-day Training of Trainers on The Presentation of the Child Rights Reporting Curriculum (CRRC) For Polytechnics held in Enugu.
Njoku said, “the vision of the new country program was a Nigeria where every child, especially the most excluded survives, thrives, learns, is protected and develops to his or her full potential, free from poverty in a safe and sustainable climate and environment”.
He informed that, UNICEF comes up with a new country program every five years and the newly unveiled one will run from 2023-2027.
He said, it was going to focus on Child Survival, Basic education, Child Protection, Social Policy, Gender equity and Program effectiveness.
In her welcome remarks, UNICEF Chief of Enugu Field Office, Mrs Juliet Chiluwe, noted that, communicating children’s rights was a challenge and that there was broad range of abuses against children emanating from ignorance of what constitutes child’s right.
Therefore, the training would help to broaden the scope of knowledge and exposure of the communication students and practitioners of Mass Communication by way of infusion of the Child Rights concerns.
Chiluwe further congratulated the Nnamdi Azikiwe University (NAU), Awka for taking the first step to further mainstream child rights curriculum by electing the CRRC as a general studies course, making it compulsory for in-school mass communicators.
Consequently, she urged other partnering Universities and communication institutions to emulate this feat as recorded by NAU in the interest of fostering child rights reportage in Nigeria.
On his part, Director/Head Advocacy Unit, Child Rights Information Bureau (CRIB), Federal Ministry of Information and Culture represented by the Chief Information Officer, Zira Zakka Nagga, commended UNICEF for their partnership with the Federal Government of Nigeria and support in ensuring that the Rights of the Nigerian Child was being protected.
He said, this new curriculum and manual for Journalism / Mass Communications as well as instructors will facilitate the movement of all journalists from the present level of Child Rights awareness to a certain degree of knowledge there by bringing about the needed paradigm shift in reporting children and expose them to the rights to survival, development, protection and participation.
The training was organised by the Child Rights Information Bureau (CRIB) of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture in collaboration with United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).