UBA Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, yesterday joined the rest of the world to celebrate the International Day of the African Child. June 16, the day set aside by the United Nations to celebrate children in Africa, recognizes the courage of students who marched for their right to better education in Soweto South Africa, and is marked annually.
The foundation brought together students from various secondary schools in Lagos to the Tony Elumelu Amphitheatre at the UBA head office in Lagos, where they were educated on various issues, ranging from financial literacy, importance of reading culture and nation building. Some of the schools represented at the event included Akande Dahunsi Memorial High School, Lagos; Government Senior College, Maroko, Aunty Ayo International School Ikoyi, and Wahab Folawiyo Senior High School, Ikoyi.
Speaking at the event, the Group Head, Human Resources, UBA, Mrs. Patricia Aderibigbe, said the foundation’s mission centres on three key pillars: Education, Empowerment and Environment. She explained that the bank, through its foundation, recognises the huge role that education and good reading culture play in the lives of the youth.
“The UBA Foundation is committed to impacting the lives of the African youth across the continent. As a pan-African institution, we believe that the future of Africa lies in her youth. For this reason, UBA Foundation is actively involved in facilitating educational projects and bridging the literacy-wide gap on a pan-African scale,” she said.
“The UBA Foundation is helping to rekindle the dwindling reading and literacy culture amongst African youths as they pursue their education. Over time, we have worked with various schools and educational institutions across the continent to ensure that the UBA Foundation continues to traverse the continent, contributing positively to the development of African youth, especially in the area of education,” she added.
She also explained that the bank through its foundation, aims to make sustainable improvements in the lives of the needy and under-privileged by supporting entrepreneurship programs, such as social entrepreneurship schemes which benefit the community at large.
On his part, the Chief Credit Officer, UBA Africa, Mr. Franklin Erebor, who spoke briefly on financial literacy and the need to plan for the future, taught the pupils the importance of managing their funds and finances. Erebo said; “You are not too young to start to plan for the future, as what you do now when you are young will impact greatly on you later in live. So it is essential that you have an account which should be well-monitored to ensure that it fulfils the purpose.
“You need to be financially literate, as this will help to open your eyes to the opportunities inherent and help you make wise decisions to benefit from the investments.”