Mrs Roli Uduaghan unveils 'Mastercare Foundation'

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The wife of Delta State Governor, Mrs. Roli Shiela Uduaghan, has formally presented her 'Mastercare Foundation', to the general public. The event, which, took place recently at the Dome, Okpanam Road, Asaba, Delta State, also witnessed the unveiling of “Mastercare Foundation” book by the First Lady, Dame Patience Goodluck Jonathan. The occasion was the first major public assignment of the First Lady outside Abuja since she assumed office.

The ceremony was centered on women and children who have remained the most vulnerable group of the society all over the world.

It is painful to see that in most rural areas, women still lack access to health, water and other basic amenities. They are mostly illiterates and inferior in all strata. This calls for urgent need to provide the needs of these group of people in the society.

However, government cannot do it alone that is why individuals, Non government Organisations, privileged Nigerians and private sector should help to ameliorate the suffering of these less privileged in the society. It is for this reason that Mrs. Roli Shiela Uduaghan established “Mastercare Foundation”, a Non Governmental Organisaion that give hope to the hopeless.

The Foundation began as the charity unit of the Mastercare Fellowship before she became the first lady of the State. It is a gender sensitive programme, focusing mainly on issues affecting widows, economically disadvantaged women and children across the state. It also helps to facilitate the agenda of Delta State government.

In her adress of welcome during the presentation, Mrs. Uduaghan, who is the co-ordinator of “Mastercare” enumerated the numerous achievements of the foundation since its inception. She described “Mastercare” as a window that privides opportunity to assist in facilitating the human capital development agenda of the state government. “Our object is to provide economic suport that will enable widows engage in more productive and rewarding economic activities, which will help them to attain a higher standard of life”. According to her, the focus on orphans and neglected children is directed towards equiping them with qualitative education, skills acquisition and provision of resources for a brighter future.

To achieve the organisation's objective, several activities have been carried out across the state. They include provision of free eye treatment in the three Senatorila Districts where over 4,239 prersons were screened, while 2,566 among them were given free reading glasses. 277 adults which includes men and 16 children were operated upon. Other areas of their intervention include the provision of skill acquisition equipment, in various areas of specialisation to widows across the state. In the riverine areas of Delta South, fishing equipment and canoes were given out to 9 widows.

In the Delta North Senatorial Distric where the women are mainly farmers, 100 motorcycles with carriers were given to 2,500 widows, while 9 tricycles were given to two coperative societies. High-yielding and insect resistant cassava and maize, including fertilizer were given to 2,500 women. In the Central Senatorial Distric and two other local governments in Delta South where the women are involved in cassava farming, 100 complete cassava processing mills and 2 rice processing mills were given out to widows in Senatorial District and two local governments.

The foundation also carried out public enlightenment and sensitization campaigns for women, students in higher institutions and prisons on various social issues. 15 toilet facilities were also provided in public primary schools in twelve local governments. It also embarked on awareness campaign while voluntary testing were carried out on over 800 women and 39 tested positive.

To give the women a good leverage to do business, the foundation continues to organise various workshops for them to enhance their performance in business. They have also continued to enlighten their women on the dangers of breast and cervical cancer, and also pneumonia.

Mrs. Uduaghan pledged her continued support to women through her numerous programmes.

Speaking at the event, the First lady and wife of President, Dame Patience Goodluck Jonathan, called on Non-governmental Organisations to lend a helping hand to the less privileged in the society as government alone cannot cater for the needs of the people. Commending the vision of Mrs. Uduaghan, she said, “It's clear that the “Mastercare Foundation” has been identifying with the weak, the helpless, putting smiles on the faces of people who have given up hope, giving free medical treatment to widows, orphans, indigent children and touching lives positively in many ways”.

She also expressed happiness that Mastercare shares the same vision of her Non governmental Organisation “AAruera Reachout Foundation” by responding to the burning desire to bring succour to the less privileged especially women and children.

She saw the foundation as an integral part of an important mission to improve lives and enhance the future of our citizens, and therefore, challenged Mrs. Uduaghan to do more to uplift the downtrodden and give them a sense of belonging. She expressed conviction that women are capable of making the country better if given the right atmosphere, motivation and encouragement.

In his remark, the Governor of Delta State, Dr. Emmnnauel Udughan said that the policies of the foundation is in alliance with the state's agenda of empowering its citizens.

Anenih and wife of the Senate Majority Leader, Mrs. Angela Folarin. Other dignitaries are, wife of the Minister of the Niger-Delta, Mrs. Helen Orubebe, wife of Ebonyi State governor and her counterparts from Abia State and Anambra. Delta State Deputy Governor and his wife, Mrs. Nelly Utama, also graced the occasion.

Highlights of the event was the review of the “Mastercare Foundation” book by professor Sylvester Monye. There was also drama presentation to illustrate the plight of the women and how mastercare has helped in the giving succor to thevwomen.