USAID Launches $13million Health Project For Vulnerable Children In Lagos

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•As Sanwo-Olu’s Wife Emerges Grand Ambassador Of Orphans
The USAID – US Agency for International Development on Tuesday launched a $13million project to mitigate the impact of HIV/AIDS on orphans and vulnerable children as well as their families in Lagos State.
The health project, which was launched at Radisson Blu Hotel, Ikeja, is targeted at supporting children that are infected and directly affected by HIV/AIDS and strengthening the resilience of vulnerable households in the state.
Tagged “Association for Reproductive and Family Health–Integrated Child Health Social Service Award (ARFH – ICHSSA 2) Project,” the health intervention is a five-year program being implemented by the Association for Reproductive and Family Health (ARFH), in partnership with Project HOPE and FHI 360 with support from the Lagos State Government, through the Ministry of Youth and Social Development and other Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
At the event, the First Lady of Lagos State, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu was also decorated with award of Grand Ambassador of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) in the state, for her consistent role in coming up with various initiatives to assuage the plight of OVC and ensuring their welfare and wellbeing.
Speaking at the event, the First Lady said the award was no doubt a call to greater service to orphans and vulnerable children in the state, assuring that it would spur her to continue to do her best for the vulnerable members of the society, especially women and children.
“In line with the “Greater Lagos” slogan and the six pillars of development of the current administration under the leadership of Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, the Office of the First Lady of Lagos State is delighted to be associated with the laudable goal and objectives of the ARFH-ICHSSA 2 Project which if implemented will contribute to the pillars of Health and Education.
“Let me express my sincere appreciation to USAID Nigeria and the leadership of Association for Reproductive and Family Health for honoring me today with the Award of ‘Grand Ambassador of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC)’ in Lagos State.
“Without doubt, this will further reinforce our commitment to the ‘Greater Lagos’ agenda of the present administration. I must add that the Lagos State Government and indeed the office of the First Lady are committed to alleviating the plight of the vulnerable in the society, particularly women and children,” she said.
She recalled that as part of commitment to wellbeing of our children, the Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials (COWLSO) under her leadership, in October 2019, launched a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative of an Endowment Fund for Pediatric Surgeries at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH).
The project, according to her, seeks to defray the cost of pediatric surgeries for needy babies of Ayinke House at LASUTH, Ikeja, in line with the mandate of COWSLO to help in promoting child healthcare and women empowerment, among others.
“Also, COWLSO introduced a novel initiative of recognizing and appreciating the contributions of elders to the successes recorded by COWLSO through a program tagged ‘COWLSO Elders Visit’. The essence of the visit is to appreciate senior citizens and to identify with them in whatever they are going through.
“The Office of the First Lady has also been expanded the initiative to accommodate other senior citizens across the five administrative divisions of the state irrespective of their ethnic and religious backgrounds. So far, a total of 61 COWLSO members who are senior citizens have been visited with gifts, cash rewards and other items, while 350 other senior citizens have been accommodated through the initiative. Through this, we take care of the cases with medical conditions requiring intervention,” she said.
Besides, the First Lady said it was also gratifying to note that the state government, through the Lagos State Health Management Agency (LASHMA), has enrolled over 1,000 orphanages for the free health scheme of the state government in line with the universal health coverage agenda of the government.

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