USAID’s Northern Education Initiative Plus joined the world over to celebrate the International Mother Language Day on February 21, 2019.
About 600,000 children have acquired basic literacy skills through the project’s teaching and learning activities in formal and non-formal schools taught in Hausa in Bauchi and Sokoto states.
Staff of the project celebrated the day reflecting on this year’s theme: “Indigenous languages matter for development, peace building and reconciliation”.
A four-man panel discussed how the five-year Northern Education Initiative Plus project uses it’s innovative early grade reading program, Mu Karanta! Let’s Read! to build reading skills for children in Hausa and transition to English from first to third grades and how communities are mobilized to support education using media campaigns in the local language.
It was also an opportunity to launch a 24-episode Hausa radio drama focused on advocating for quality education in Bauchi and Sokoto states.
Acting Chief of Party of the project Nurudeen Lawal said language remains a currency to better opportunities and must be preserved.
“We must encourage our children to speak our languages, that way we preserve our culture and heritage,” he said.
Staff also marked the event dressed in native attire worn by some of the 500 tribes of Nigeria.
Funded by the United States Agency for International Development, the Northern Education Initiative Plus aims to improve reading skills for more than one million children and provide educational opportunities for up to 400,000 out of school children especially girls in Bauchi and Sokoto states.
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