The Rochas foundation has launched a new initiative called Rochas Education Aid and Development Initiative ( READ). This was disclosed by the Director General of the Foundation, Ucy Okorocha at a press conference held in Abuja on Wednesday. Ucy stated that the new initiative which will kick-start in the year 2020, seeks to get 15 million indigent kids off the streets and into schools.
“we are pleased to announce the addition of another feather to our cap. It is the Rochas Education Aid and Development Initiative (READ). This new initiative which would kick off in 2020 seeks to get 15 million indigent kids off the streets and into schools,” she said. She also said, in as much as the foundation is committed to actualizing this vision, it will be impossible without support from relevant stakeholders, civil societies and the federal government. “We are using this medium to also call on the Federal Government to collaborate with state governments and our foundation with other stakeholders to get these kids; Nigeria’s potential future leaders to school” She added that “In 2023 the Rochas Foundation will be sponsoring 10 students per state, the brightest children who will make the best results in JAMB for scholarships to study in Nigerian universities, and 5 from every African country”. The Rochas foundation since its inception in 1998, has provided access to free education to over 20,000 children and currently have 5,737 children in schools and over 4,000 undergraduates in different universities and over 2000 graduates in the country
The Rochas Foundation has pledged to continue to mop up out-of-school children from the streets of Bauchi and give them qualitative education. The Principal of Rochas Foundation College, Sarah Johnson Mafia, stated this in a recent meeting with journalists in Bauchi. Mafia said the foundation had, so far, sponsored the education of about 446 out-of-school children in the state. She added that close to 1,000 pupils in Bauchi would benefit from the foundation’s free education programme within the next three years..
She said: “It is not easy to come from somewhere and learn that somebody who does not know you has decided to change your life by giving you qualitative and comprehensive free education. It is a very rare gesture. And that is why we are here to celebrate former Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State and to pray to God to give him long life so that he can continue to affect lives positively. “We started in 2017 with 192 pupils, in 2018, we got 144 pupils admitted in schools. This year, we have enrolled 120 pupils in school. So we have a total of 446 pupils in junior secondary school..
“Before we get to SS3, we should have moved more than 900 from the streets of Bauchi and given them free education. The vision of our founder is to ensure there is no more roaming in the streets.” Mafia also noted that most of the children, who had been on the streets for a long time, lacked love, respect and moral values before the school came to their aid and inculcated good moral values in them.
When we brought them to the school, many of them didn’t know what love and care were all about. Right now, they can’t stay without each other because there is a bond that they share. “What we want is to see stars emerge from this school in the near future. We want to see them deliberating on matters of the country. That is what the founder wants,” she said. The Principal called on the parents of the pupils to collaborate with the school by inculcating in them good moral values at home, “They should groom the children very well so that it will be easy to raise great leaders amongst them