Students in public secondary schools in Lagos state will serve as model ambassadors for the global climate change advocacy being championed by financial giant, Access Bank and NerdzFactory Foundation, a non-profit organization working to improve access to quality education & skills, decent jobs, economic empowerment, climate change education and gender equality.
As part of the initiative, a flag-off event held at the Lagos City College Hall, Yaba on October 31st with the launch of “the climate change and environmental sustainability clubs,” which will equip at least 2000 students and teachers across 50 schools in Lagos State.
Students from ten schools within the Yaba axis participated in the launch event, which included the announcement of a climate essay competition that kicked off on November 7. The schools in attendance include Lagos City Senior College; Jibowu Junior High School; Wesley Girls Senior Secondary School; Aje Comprehensive Senior High School; Mobolaji Bank Anthony Junior High School; Birrel Avenue Senior High School; and Wesley Girls Junior Secondary School.
While addressing the students, Senior Special Assistant on Education to the Governor of Lagos State, Adetola Salau said that climate change is a real phenomenon that should be understood rather than dismissed.
“Since it is you and possibly your children who will be the ones dealing with the effects of climate change in about 30 years’ time, it is important for you to be interested and become engaged from now,” she said.
The climate change and sustainability clubs are designed to educate teachers, students and school leaders on environmental sustainability and climate change education, while also encouraging STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and green careers among young people. The initiative is coming at a time when the world and the state needs sustainable climate intervention.
Ade’ Olowojoba, Director at NerdzFactory Foundation referred to the current nationwide flood crisis as a reason why more attention should be paid to climate change issues in Nigeria.
He charged the students to not be passive about the environment but always take action. “No matter how little, every positive action for a better environment count.”
According to the Head, Group Sustainability at Access Corporation, Omobolanle Victor-Laniyan, “Climate change is the biggest threat facing humanity today and Access Corporation remains committed to investing in climate change education to drive environmental sustainability.”
“Drawing from our experience in championing climate change initiatives over two decades, we have come to the realisation that there is a need to expand the knowledge base and deepen the interest of the younger generation in climate change issues if we are to stand any chance of sustaining positive impact. Hence, we are proud to be partnering with NerdzFactory to launch the climate change and sustainability clubs. It is our desire to scale this pilot initiative and extend our footprint across other geo-political zones over the next few years,” Victor-Laniyan added.
Also at the event were representatives from Access Bank (sponsor); Lagos State Ministry of Education; Nigeria Climate Innovation Centre (NCIC) and the NerdzFactory Foundation team members.
NerdzFactory Foundation is dedicated to giving young adults across Africa/Nigeria with 21st Century technology skills needed to innovate, become self-reliant and also create jobs for themselves and others while also equipping them with knowledge and skills on how to ensure environmental sustainability.