BY: Nick Nwaneri, Calabar
t was a moment of celebration and joy in the faces of Pupils and students as they benefits from Coco-Bassey Foundation with books, uniforms, scholarships and other educational materials.
The foundation has touched the hearts of over 5,000 pupils and students in Cross River state empowering them according to their immediate needs.
These empowerment programmes are geared towards ameliorateing various challenges facing school children and parents in pursuing their academics in the state.
The benefiting schools from the empowerment programme that was done simultaneously on Februaryy 14, 2022 in the three senatorial districts (Cross River South , Central and North) of the state are: Model Comprehensive Secondary School Begiaba, Obudu LGA (Northern Senatorial); Community Primary School Unimukong Ukwel, Obudu LGA (Northern Senatorial); Velos Secondary Commercial School, Four Corners, Ikom LGA (Central Senatorial)’ PCN Primary School, Four Corners, Ikom LGA (Central Senatorial), Presbyterian Primary School, Ishie Town, Calabar Municipality (South Senatorial) and Estate Secondary School, Ikot Ansa, Calabar Municipality (South Senatorial).
Speaking in the three senatorial districts as represented, the Chairman of the Foundation, Engr Mkpang Coco-Bassey said, “it is valuable to educate children for they are the future of a Nation”
He added ” a well-educated generation will produce Engineers, Teachers, Doctors scientists, Political leaders, etc that will develop a sustainable society where Job opportunities created will be utilized and proceeds used to take care of our fathers and mothers when they are old while putting bread and butter on the table of each family and their households”.
In Cross River South Senatorial district, presented by Mr. Patrick Coco-Bassey , he said, “this is the vision that has motivated this foundation to reach out to you on this faithful day with the goal of conducting a yearly empowerment programmes which will include:
“Presentations of scholarships. Payment of Exams fees and school fees for primary and secondary schools respectively. Payment for school uniforms as part of scholarships Presentation of exercise books and other writing materials including biros, pencils, rulers to all students. Presentation to Teachers (Teacher’s Notes) to support their schedule towards teaching and presentation of school bags to all the students”.
The young engineer stated that “this initiative has come to stay, and it will be at the forefront of the foundation’s activities. Our next initiative will include the presentation of Desktop computers and laptops to each public school since E-learning has become even more pertinent for diversified learning, owing to the constant evolution and the recent pandemic that rocked the world.
“Education, be it in the four walls of an institution or a skill acquisition centre, facilitates learning to kick-start a life of relevance which is a much-needed survival tool in today’s world. The Coco-Bassey Foundation is a major proponent of education and has deemed fit to award scholarships and educational empowerments to the three senatorial districts of Cross River State.
Coco-Bassey who is a product of public school, pledged “to involve local and foreign support in developing the educational sector in Cross-River State” , saying, “I will also expand the programme to accommodate the rehabilitation of existing classroom structures and subsequently build new ones in the coming future”.
The Deputy Head Teacher of Ishie Primary School, Roseline Sunday Okon who represented the Head Teacher, Mrs Inyang Edem, sincerely thanked God “for selecting my school to benefit. It is wonderful and amazing because I have been telling God send helpers to this children because so many of them here do not have exercise books, writing materials, no textbooks, no one sandals and they have been coming to school like that and we thank that God for using Coco-Bassey Foundation to support us.
She commended the Foundation for its kind gesture, charged other groups to emulate Coco-Bassey Foundation by coming to our aide. Go to the classrooms things are bad and we are believing God Engineer Mkpang Coco-Bassey through the Foundation will touch the buildings and others”
A teacher of Estate Secondary School, Calabar Dr. Gladys Agbor who represented the Principal, Mrs. Theresa Ekuri also expressed delight with the empowerment programme from the Foundation saying, “our school is highly populated with over 2,000 students and most ofthe students live with people as house helps and most of them have been unable to pay their fees so this Foundation has really come to help us alleviate these our students from what they are suffering”.
On her part, the Headmistress Government Primary School, Obudu, Mrs Victoria Ogar, said they are not used to this kind of empowerment and “this is the first time an organisation or a foundation has given meaningful items to the school. Before now we always received salts, fish, maggi and food items” hence commended the Foundation for its kind gesture.
She stated that the school has been left unattended to for a long time and pleaded with the Foundation for an intervention as the school has very poor learning environment, the class block has nothing to write home about and “there is no examination hall, Laboratory equipments, ICT hall/Computers, no seats, Library and no good toilet for students etc”.
In Central Senatorial district, Mr. Paul Alesi, a School Teacher of Valos Secondary school, said he is happy that his school was selected to benefit from the Coco-Bassey Foundation’s donation and prayed that God will continue to bless the Foundation and that they need him to do more
A Junior Secondary School (JSS 3) student of Valos Secondary school, Onyebuchi Joy Bernard was also thrilled with the benevolence of the Foundation saying, “I am happy to get the school bag, exercise books and others and I pray that God will continue to bless the Coco-Bassey Foundation”.
Memuna Sulieman Jibril a primary four pupil of PCN Primary School, Ikom, said, she was not expecting such to happen and it took her by surprise and also prayed for the Foundation to have the capacity to do more and as God will bless the Chief Executive Officer of the foundation.