Western Union,DOAM Foundation take ‘Read To Succeed’ campaign to Benin, Aba & OwerriImage
Two secondary schools in Benin, Edo State and two secondary schools in Owerri Imo State
got a befitting gift on November 26 and November 28 respectively, when DOAM Foundation,
in partnership with some financial institutions donated books and other study equipment worth
millions of naira to boost learning. Idia and Edo Colleges in Benin City and Owerri Girls and
Ahiaba High School had their library block renovated and equipped with 30 ceiling fans, 283
reading chairs, 51 reading tables, 20 computers, four UPS, forty computer tables, 6 librarian
tables and 31 shelves stocked with books of various disciplines worth over ₦6 million naira,
ceramic floor tiles for the entire floors. In total the amount given to DOAM Foundation to
execute the project by the Western Union Foundation was $114,114.
The programme was coordinated by DOAM Foundation (Daniel Ogechi Akujobi
Memorial(DOAM) Foundation, a humanitarian and non-governmental organization founded in
2006 in memory of Master Daniel Ogechi Akujiobi (1992-2005), a 13- year old lad who was the
only son of his parents ,he died from injuries he sustained in a fatal auto crash on his way back
to school along the Lagos- Ibadan Expressway, Ogun State.
Working in partnership with Western Union, UBA, Diamond Bank, Ecobank, Access Bank
Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and Skye Bank, the Foundation has been assisting public schools
to improve the educational capability of the Nigerian child by donating study materials to
designated schools across the country. In Edo State, Edo and Idia Colleges while in Imo State,
Owerri Girls Secondary and Ahiaba High School in Abia State were the lucky ones who were
chosen to benefit from this laudable project.
Commissioning the libraries, which were equipped in line with the Foundation’s initiative
theme, ‘The Western Union Read To Succeed Library Project’, Edo State Governor, Comrade
Adams Oshiomhole said the event was timely, noting that it was in line with the goals of the
state government in making public schools in Edo State not only attractive but also amply
equipped with materials that will help
develop the student’s capacity, thereby shaping them to becoming better leaders in future.
The Governor, who was amply represented by the Commissioner for Higher Tertiary and
Technical Education, Barrister Washington Osifo, praised the DOAM Foundation and promised
to partner with them in
future in order to develop education further.
Lagos– Nigeria, November 26th, 2013: The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU), a leader
in money transfer and global payment services, the Western Union Foundation and six Western
Union Agents (Access Bank, Diamond Bank, Ecobank Nigeria, Guaranty Trust Bank, Skye
Bank, and United Bank for Africa) have partnered with non-governmental organisation, Daniel
Ogechi Akujobi Memorial Foundation (DOAMF) for the announcement of the 2013 “Project
Read to Succeed” initiative.
A grant of US$114,114 was made to the DOAM Foundation to support this project. The aim of
the initiative is to make an impact in underdeveloped schools in Nigeria by distributing 200,000 books and 40 computers (ten computers per institution) in addition to book shelves, reading
tables and chairs to equip their libraries. A provision for fans, floor tiles and painting of the
buildings is also included in the grant.
The grant funds will also be used in the beneficiary schools selected by DOAM Foundation from
a comprehensive list sent by state governments. The schools are; Edo College and Idia College
both in Benin City, Owerri Girls secondary School in Imo state and Ahiaba High School in Abia
Speaking for Western Union, Aida Diarra, Regional Vice President for North, Central and West
Africa, Western Union stated, “The basic ability to read is what makes the ability to learn possible.
It is also the way we are able to seek out and acquire information ourselves, without relying on biased
viewpoints. At Western Union, we believe that education, access to financial services and economic
opportunity go hand in hand – to advocate for a world where economic opportunity is in reach for
Patrick Gaston, President of Western Union Foundation further commented, “Lack of education is a
barrier to financial inclusion, especially for those who don’t have access to the financial services due to
low literacy levels. ‘Project Read to Succeed’ is in line with the Western Union’s ‘Education for Better’
program which supports access to education that provides resources and tools to people in the society
that need to live better lives.”
In her welcome address, the principal of Idia College, Mrs. E.H. Ogbebor described the event as
another milestone in the history of the institution. She thanked the initiators of the project, noting
that the laudable gesture will remain evergreen in the memory of the benefitting schools.
She noted that although the library had been renovated by the state government, there had been
no materials in it, thereby compounding the problem of reading culture among students as they
had no access to educational materials. She promised that conscious effort would be made to
ensure the maintenance of the library and materials put in place.
On his part, the principal, Edo College, Benin City, Deacon Idahosa Godwin Osawonmwan,
expressed his heartfelt gratitude, pointing out that with the renovation, DOAM Foundation and
its partners has done marvelously well for the school.
Osawonmwan said students now have a competitive advantage over their peers in both public
private schools, not only in the state but at the national level. He prayed that the soul of Daniel
Ogechi Akujobi and the souls of all faithful departed rest in peace.
The joy of the students and parents present at the event knew no bounds as they spoke with our
reporter. Dr W. E. Oghieriaeki, a member of the Parents Teachers Association, Edo College
City commended the project, noting that as parents, they would not have been able to purchase the books donated to the schools. He prayed that God continue to bless those that funded the
Speaking on behalf of her schools, the head girl of Idia College, Miss Miracle and the senior
prefect Edo College, Master Marvelous, thanked DOAM Foundation and other partners for
choosing her school for the project.
Miss Igbinadion Promise, library prefect of Idia College expressed her gratitude further, “I am
so happy. Before now, we have been complaining that books were not in the library but this is
the opportunity we have been praying for. No more excuses for not reading, so am thankful to
Western Union and DOAM Foundation, Skye Bank and all other banks that partnered in this
project. We can now boast of books I have never seen and books I never thought of reading. This
is an opportunity for us to
learn more”.
Esohe Ogbebor, the principal of Idia College Senior Secondary School expressed joy and
gratitude to the donors. “I feel so good and happy for this honour that Western Union, DOAM
Foundation, Skye Bank Diamond Bank, UBA, and all others has done.
We will ensure that the students will make use of the library well because it is for their sake that
it was equipped. I want to use this opportunity to tell other cooperate bodies that they should also
emulate DOAM Foundation and those that have partnered with them to come and also do some
work in schools for the betterment of the society”, she said.
In her remarks, the Project Manager of DOAM Foundation Mrs. Clare Henshaw, advised both
teachers and students of both schools to make good use of the facility. She noted that the library
should be used to develop their intellectual skills, as they could explore the world right from the
library with books ranging from educational, motivational, and innovational. She also promised
that they would continue to work with the schools if the facility was put to good use.


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