This year’s World Orphan Day celebration was held in Delta State on Monday with forty-eight registered orphanages and five adopted families benefitting from the gesture of the first lady, Dame Edith under the aegis of her pet project, 05 Initiative.
The beneficiaries also include the Quintuplet (all girls) who have been under the care of Dame Okowa since birth in 2019 following the untimely death of their mother shortly after delivery at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Asaba.
The orphanages, drawn from across the state, received food items including tubers of yam, beans, vegetable oil, noodles, rice, toiletries etc which were collected from the first lady office in Asaba.
The distribution of the items, Dame Okowa said, was in fulfilment of the mission of O5 Initiative to feed the hungry and provide shelter for the homeless even as the celebration was to honour Mother Theresa of Calcutta who spent her life looking after the poor.
According to her, every child has a right to sound education, protection, good life, regretting that “it was quite unfortunate to hear of daily happenings around us as they affect children.”
She charged mothers not to be partial and selective in dealing with children living with them.
“It is our God-given responsibility to care for those living with us as mothers, therefore we should be mindful of the way we treat other people’s children because we will not always be where children are.
“The issue of the care of orphans is of immense importance to the O5 Initiative. For the past five years, we have worked with caregivers in registered orphanages across the state.
“This year has introduced a new way of life due to the pandemic but it has not stopped us from attending regularly to the needs of our children at the orphanages”
The first lady appreciated the caregivers for their constant love and care for the children; urging them to keep up the good work.
Dame Okowa was full of praise to Almighty God for providing the resources through partners; individuals and corporate organisations.
A caregiver, Rev Mother Lauretta Elechukwu of Paracletan Orphanage home in Okitagbo, a suburb of Okpanam commended the first lady for reaching out to the poor in the state on yearly basis.
She urged others to emulate the gesture which she said was a road to heaven.