E-REACH FOUNDATION VISITS ORPHANS IN IBIONO IBOM LGA
…SENSITIZE ELDERS, CHILDREN ON RAPE
By Iniobong Etuk
E-Reach Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organisation continues in her avowed commitment to give succour to the lives of the vulnerable in the society by reaching out to orphans in Mbiabam Village, Ibiono Ibom LGA, Akwa Ibom State with a message against rape and the need for elders and children to be proactive to fight the ill which is plaguing the society.
The outreach took place at Traditional Council Hall, Mbiabam village, Ibiono Ibom LGA during the traditional council meeting, recently.
The Team Lead of E-Reach Foundation, Miss Enwono-Abasi Elisha charged Elders in Council to make the community safer by preaching the message against Rape in the local community through their various traditional communication channel.
“It is time everyone speak out against this vice right from the family unit as the act is carried out at home levels most times.
“It is time our children are made to know why they should be guarded against familiar visitors of the opposite sex, uncles who exceed their boundaries and indulged in personal physical contacts which are unhealthy to the mindset of a child,” Miss Elisha said.
The Organisation also educated orphan children who were gathered in the council premises on the need to be determined and positive about life which will help them to be self-reliance and proactive against societal ills.
Also, the orphan children were encouraged to be hopeful and serious with their education. They were advised to be obedient to their guardians whom they live with as vicissitudes of life can not overcome a positively determined soul.
Mentors took turn to charge the children on issue of rape and personal hygiene.
Little Miss Joy Moses Effiong, 10 years old, took time to relate with the children on rape by charging the children never to hide gifts from their guardians. She went on to encourage the children to be open to their parents or guardians and not keep secrets which the culprits consciously take advantage of such knowledge.
She charged the children to rejects gifts from opposite sex which sometimes serve as bait for rapists to gain access to a child and abuse occur.
Also, Miss Ememobong Okon, CEO – Hope for Coastal Women Empowerment Initiative (HFCWEI), admonished the audience comprising of Council Chiefs and orphan children, to always speak out in cases of impending threat to healthy community living and that of a child.
She called on all stakeholders to endeavour to come open with cases of rape and leave no room for rapists to move freely in the society.
In response, the Village Head of Mbiabam village, Ibiono Ibom LGA, Chief Asuquo Jimmy Uwah expressed appreciation to the group’s choice to visit orphan children in the locality.
He added that as one of the largest villages in Ibiono Ibom, there are many cases of orphan children which inadequate care is threatening their expected future. Chief Uwah said currently he is giving care to an orphan boy whose parents left five of them. He added that four of the boy’s siblings were shared to the late father’s uncles whom he feared may not have the capability of taking care of these kids.
The Village Head seize the opportunity to called on public-spirited individuals to always come forth for these category of children as the future can not be complete without them.
Another Chief who is the Chairman of Council, Chief Patrick Martin Usen frowned at the rise of rape cases in the society and urged parents to take responsibility by giving proper sex education to their wards at home.
The Secretary of Council, Chief Sylvester Edet promised that they will take the message further into the community to enlighten both young and old on the evil which is threatening the society.
Meanwhile, gift items were given to the children ranging from educational materials, personal hygiene kits and light refreshment.