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COWLSO to boost education in Lagos rural communities

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COWLSO (Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials) plans to invest heavily in education across Lagos State, especially in rural areas and underserved communities.

COWLSO Chairman and First Lady of Lagos State, Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, spoke about the plan at a press conference held in Lagos House, Alausa – Ikeja, to announce activities lined up for the 21st National Women’s Conference of the Committee, which is scheduled to hold between 26th and 28th October 2021, at The Convention Centre, Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

At a press conference alongside top COWLSO officials and members of the Conference Planning Committee, Mrs Sanwo-Olu stated that proceeds from the conference would be used to fund school projects and procure equipment for students living in rural areas and children with special needs.

She said: “This year, by the grace of God, COWLSO will be going on the educational route. All proceeds from this conference will be channelled towards things that will help our children.

In conjunction with the Ministry of Education, we will partner to have a school project, and not only that, we will ensure that our children have the best equipment to learn.

“We will also be looking at ensuring that children with special needs have the necessary equipment to learn. Education is the bedrock of society and we must catch them young.

And so, that is one of the reasons we don’t joke with the National Women’s Conference. It has been on for the past 20 years and this year, we are having the 21st edition.”

Disclosing that all is set for the hybrid conference with the theme “Awake!” the First Lady explained that due to COVID-19’s new realities, only 1,000 physical attendees will attend while approximately 6,000 members will take part online.

Mrs Sanwo-Olu stated that this year’s conference theme – “Awake” – is designed to bring women up to speed with modern realities and offer solutions to the variety of challenges confronting Lagos State and Nigeria.

Her words: “The theme of the Conference and Sub-themes will be examined by subject-matter experts, who are seasoned and accomplished professionals in various spheres of life. They have been carefully selected to thoroughly dissect the topics.”

In discussing some of the activities slated for the event, the First Lady revealed that women who have made a positive impact would be honoured as inspirational women of the year, while the inspirational youths of the year category will debut this year.

Additionally, she announced that there will be COWLSO Virtual and Physical Markets that participants can visit and buy various items at greatly reduced prices from accredited vendors, along with free legal clinics and medical care.

On other activities, Sanwo-Olu said: “This year, our Gala Night will return and it promises to be a bumper package mixed with a potpourri of entertainment and raffle draws that will bring about exciting prizes for lucky participants.

“As part of the pre-Conference preparations, last week, we had a fellowship and prayer service both at the Chapel and Mosque in Lagos House, Ikeja. On Saturday, 16th October 2021, we shall embark on an Awareness Walk, with the theme: “Awake! Stop the Violence!”

Disclosing that Nigeria’s First Lady, Dr. (Mrs.) Aisha Muhammadu Buhari is scheduled to declare the conference open, Mrs. Sanwo-Olu added that Ondo State Governor, Arakunri Rotimi Akeredolu, SAN, will be the Special Guest of Honour at the opening ceremony while Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, is slated as Special Guest of Honour at the closing ceremony.

Additionally, Mrs Oluremi Hamzat, Deputy COWLSO Chairman and wife of the Deputy Governor, commended the First Lady’s vision and leadership, saying these had translated to welfare and socio-economic empowerment for women, children, and the vulnerable in the state.

Chairperson of NWC Planning Committee, Ms Nkem Sofela, said members had been working assiduously in the last couple of months to ensure that the 21st COWLSO Conference is a huge success.

COWLSO members and the First Lady ended the press conference with an awareness walk in Alausa, Ikeja.

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