ExxonMobil, an Oil and Gas firm, has identified youth engagement in health literacy and sports as a crucial factor to achieving a healthy society which in turn promotes business activities.
The company’s Government and Business Relations Manager, Nigel Cookey-Gam, stated this at the secondary school student’s basketball finals, organised by Power Forward, a youth development initiative of ExxonMobil, the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the international NGO, Africare, held yesterday in Abuja.
Students from 10 secondary schools namely Model Secondary School, Maitama, Rahinna Model Schools, Jikwoyi, Raberto Schools, Wuse 11, Divine Mercy Secondary School, Asokoro, Glisten INT. School, Jahi, Total Child Model School, Dutse, Government Secondary School, Karu, Government Secondary School, Wuse Zone 3, Government Secondary School, Garki, and Government Secondary School Airport participated in the basketball programme.
The Power Forward project is aimed at teaching health literacy and life skills such as leadership, respect and personal responsibility through basketball and other programming to positively impact secondary school students in Abuja.
According to Cookey-Gem, the programme has so far trained over 1300 students including 900 direct beneficiaries and 400 peer influencers from 30 schools in the FCT.
“in 2017, the programmed reached over 12, 315 students and community members with public health messaging in malaria and hygiene education, good hand wash practice and environmental protection.
“From January to August this year, the programme has reached close to 12,500 youths in school and vulnerable communities with life skills information, provided more than 6500 persons with malaria prevention strategies and treatment, said Cookey-Gam.
Other achievements of the programmme he said include establishment of of 20 hand wash stations to promote hygiene and promote exemplary leadership skills, adding that about 5000 students were engaged on plastic waste management awareness campaigns with 300 female students from 10 project schools engaged in a menstrual hygiene management awareness programme.
Also, the National Coordinator, Non-communicable Disease Divisions, Public Health Department, Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Nnenna Ezigwe, while commending the organisers of the programme stresses that physical activates have enormous positive effects on the body.
Represented by the Mrs Amadi Dorathy, Ezigwe noted that physical exercises can improve health and reduce the risk of diseases, including regulating blood pressure.
The event which marked the fifth year anniversary of the programme also had in attendance, former NBA player, Jerome Williams, former WNBA player, Mactabene Amachree among others.
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