From Anthony Nwachukwu, Lagos
About 120 physically-challenged children in Lagos, comprising 70 visually-impaired and 50 others living with down syndrome have benefitted from a training partnership between the SIFAX Group and two non-governmental organisations (NGOs), the Initiative for National Growth and Mo Rainbow Foundation, aimed at equipping them for competitive jobs.
At the training for the visually-impaired group, organized by the Initiative for National Growth, such topics as choosing a career in public speaking, mass communication, law and psychology, mobility skills for the blind, legal rights, music therapy and sports skills were discussed in addition to free malaria and HIV tests for both participants and their caregivers.
On its part, Mo Rainbow Foundation hosted children living with the down syndrome to a five-day inclusive creative arts training, which was meant to enhance their learning and adaptive skills.
The Executive Director, Human Resources and Administration, SIFAX Group, Dr. Fola Rogers-Saliu, said the training sponsorship was in line with the company’s resolve to make the society a better place for everybody, especially the physically challenged, the poor, orphans and widows, among others.
According to her, “at SIFAX Group, we take delight in supporting social courses that positively impact and add value to the society. Physically-challenged children are shut out of many opportunities in the country due to their condition.
“These trainings were then designed to prepare them for the real world, to equip them with the skills required to succeed, even in a competitive environment. We believe that the society could gain a whole lot if the abilities and talents of these children are appropriately tapped; that is why SIFAX Group is backing these initiatives.”
Similarly, the Coordinator of Initiative for National Growth, Rachael Inegbedion, noted that the blind community has been underserved, especially with trainings on life skills “that will make them better people in the society.
“With this training, we want to stimulate the abilities in them and see them grow to become renowned professionals and experts in the different fields they have been trained today.”
Also, the Creative Director, Mo Rainbow Foundation, Tola Makinde, commended SIFAX Group for supporting the children living with the down syndrome, adding that creative arts was one of the best ways to get the best out of them.
According to her, “these children are special and these five days’ special arts and crafts session exposed the special talents these children possess. They are not useless, as some people would think.”