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Hmgsf Visits The Offin Community This Year's International Day Of Families - Nairaland / General - Nairaland

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Hmgsf Visits The Offin Community This Year's International Day Of Families by Bestdone: 11:06pm On May 31, 2018

©Agba Esther Makuochukwu

The annual observance of the International Day of Families was celebrated across the globe, but for the Offin community in the Ikorodu settlement of Lagos State, it was most impacting. This year's commemoration aptly heralded the theme “Families and inclusive societies”. It explores the role of families and family policies in advancing Sustainable Development Goal(SDG) -16 in terms of promoting peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development.

Marking this year's International Day of Families, 'His Marvelous Grace Support Foundation' (HMGSF) - a community based & family oriented Non Governmental Organisation(NGO), amongst others stormed the Offin community in Ikorodu. It was experience filled as they lightened up the community, cresting down the meaning and messages of the day on the people. The beginning of program of events which started about 11am at the residence of the Bálè of the community, saw the traditional ruler welcome the NGOs to his community.

The event started with a talk on basic knowledge of one's health and general wellness by a health practitioner, Mrs Ajasa of 'The Community Salvage for People's Health and Empowerment' educating the people of the community on measures to take to prevent themselves from contracting the dreaded Acquired Immune-deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and Human Immune-deficiency Virus (HIV) and steps to take if one is already living with the virus. Participants were espoused to the awareness of the vital signs and symptoms of the disease.
In the words of the facilitator, "the scourge of AIDS & HIV has become a source of worry to family cohesiveness as a result of the stigmatization associated with it. Hence carriers, for the fear of being labeled and embarrassed, get boxed into a very dangerous silence". They were advised to seek counseling at any of the family centers available. At the expiration of the health talk cum counseling, Free HIV tests were administered on people in attendance.

Human rights and domestic violence came to the front burner. She continued "Human rights and domestic violence have become topical issues today owing to their prevalence. The traumatic effects they leave on their victims are of huge concern to us. You need to know your rights as a human being and avoid unnecessary domestic violence if possible. Report also where and when necessary". Hotlines were called out by a Human Rights activist - Alhaji Lateef of Community Women’s Rights (CWR). The program continued with a skills acquisition seminar for women of the community, teaching them how to make and package bleach for their homes and for commercial purposes. This was organized by Mrs Oluwadamisi Tayoladega of HMGSF.

Other humanitarian gestures and activities extended to the people includes: Clothes fair, which was conducted where people in attendance had the opportunity of picking cloths for themselves and children at a very subsidised rate of 50 and 100 naira each. Blood Pressure (BP) test were conducted too and some were referred to the nearest health Centre for further medical check up.

'Item 7' was next. Refreshments for families in attendance was served, fully sponsored by the HMGSF. The good people of Offin community were appreciated for their warm reception and cooperation.

Recall that families all over the world have transformed greatly over the past decades in terms of their structure and as a result of global trends and demographic changes, the United Nations still recognizes the family as the basic unit of society. The International Day of Families provides an opportunity to promote awareness of issues relating to families and to increase knowledge of the social, economic and demographic processes affecting them. It has inspired a series of awareness-raising events, including national family days. In many countries, this day is an opportunity to highlight different areas of interest and importance to families.

The International Day of Families is observed on the 15th of May every year, a day proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in 1993 with resolution A/RES/47/237 and reflects the importance the international community attaches to families. Activities that highlights the day include workshops and conferences, radio and television programmes, newspaper articles and cultural programmes highlighting relevant issues bothering on family challenges.

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