Lagos State Office of Civic Engagement, in collaboration with Alaro City Development, has commenced the distribution of free food packs to nursing mothers who were beneficiaries of the pilot, research and launch phase of the Mother, Infants and Child (MICHD) programme for their post-natal cares.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony held recently in Epe, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Civic Engagement, Princess Aderemi Adebowale said 50 Nursing Mothers, who were part of the 570 indigent pregnant women earlier selected from 20 LG and 37 LCDAs for the launch phase of the programme and had received food packs, supplements and other necessary support throughout the pregnancy and now in their post-natal stages.
She added that the 50 Nursing Mothers from Ibeju-Lekki Local Government, Epe Local Government, Ikosi-Ejinrin LCDA, Eredo LCDA and Lekki LCDA have been presented with food packs to last them for a period of 12 weeks.
Adebowale, represented at the event by the Director of Public Affairs Department in the Ministry, Mrs. Olatokunbo Dawodu, explained that to create a peaceful and safe environment where the government can function optimally, citizens’ right from conception to birth and through adolescence to adulthood must be given a fair chance to live, grow and become civically responsible individuals who are less likely to exert social pressure on the system.
Speaking further, she averred that the journey towards productive and civically responsible citizens starts from the womb, adding that the programme is part of the office’s mandate and in line with the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda of the State Government.
In her words: “The MICHD 2050 programme is focused on security from the womb with a multifaceted advantage as a preventative initiative and the brain development of the child from in-utero to birth, to adolescence and into adulthood. This is why from the inception of the pilot phase, the Office of Civic Engagement has been working with other partners to provide nutritional food packs to over 3000 indigent pregnant mothers”.
She, however, informed that proper feeding in the first four years of life (0-2000 days) is essential due to its role in lowering morbidity and mortality and its ability to impact sustainable human capital development, hence the need for postnatal care, sponsored by the Alaro City Development, one of the MICHD programme partners, for 50 beneficiaries from Epe Division for 12 weeks.
While assuring that the mothers and children would continue to receive attention during this vital period, the Special Adviser appreciated Birthright, Jawaron Pharmaceutical, Lasena Water, Rite Foods and Procter & Gamble for their support while calling for more collaborations from other kind-hearted individuals and corporate organisations in Lagos State.
In his remark, Chairman, Ibeju-Lekki Local Government, Engr. Abdullah Sesan Olowa said the programme is indeed one of its kind in Nigeria and pledges continued support of the Local Authorities towards the programme.
Dignitaries present at the presentation ceremony include the Operations Manager, Alaro City Development, Miss Estelle Dimka; the Marketing Associate, Alaro City Development, Christiana Aileru; Vice-Chairman, Ibeju-Lekki, Hon. Isiaka Olatunji; Director, Birthright Infants and Maternity, Mrs. Angela Igieva; Director, Citizens Engagement, Mr. Babatunde Omotayo and other Directors and staff of the Office of Civic Engagement.