18 Oct 2020 OCI FOUNDATION HOSTED BY NIGERIA’S HEALTH MINISTRY, AS NATIONWIDE CONSULTATIONS CONTINUE AHEAD OF THE ARoY CAMPAIGN NATIONWIDE (15/10/2020)
On Thursday, October the 15th, 2020, the the OCI Foundation was hosted by top directors of Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH), as nationwide deliberations with key stakeholders on the successful roll-out of the Arm Our Youths (ArOY) Health Campaign, continue.
Acting on the directive of Nigeria’s Honourable Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Emmanuel Ehanire, the 5-man team from the FMoH was led by the Ministry’s Head of Hospital Services, Dr Adepimpe Adebiyi (mni), and included the National Director of the National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP), Dr Okakpo Okpikpi. The meeting centered around a potential partnership and areas of collaboration between the FMoH and the OCI Foundation on the ArOY Health Campaign.
It should be noted that the ArOY Campaign is a novel, Harvard-endorsed, WHO-supported, and evidence-based health promotion initiative of the OCI Foundation, which is being introduced across all senior secondary schools in Nigeria as a way of tackling breast and cervical cancers. In September 2019, it was rolled out across all the 261 senior secondary schools in Anambra State of Nigeria, and a similar event, scheduled for Benue State in May 2020, was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All of Nigeria’s 36 states (and the FCT) are expected to benefit from the ArOY campaign on or before the end of 2025, and the ongoing consultations are part of this whole process.
At this meeting, the OCI Foundation was represented by a 5-man team drawn from its Advocacy Team, and lead by the Team Head, Mr Sam Agwa. Other representatives on the day were Ms Felicia Dagu (Admin Officer III), Mrs Sandra Udeike (the Media Liaison Consultant), Mr Ifeanyi Anueyiagu, and Dr Theophilus Nwokeocha.
The ArOY Health Campaign has the support of the, NextGenU.org (the World’s first online University), the United States Centers for Disease Control (U.S. CDC) and the University of British Columbia, Canada (ranked 45th in the world, according to the 2021 QS World University Ranking). Experts from these institutions, along with others from the University of Saskatchewan (Canada) and the Griffith University (Australia), will work with the OCI Foundation and the Nigerian Government on the roll-out, implementation and monitoring of the ArOY project. In addition, the prestigious Harvard Medical School, USA, of which Dr Chris Ifediora (the Founder of the OCI Foundation) is an Alumnus of, had earlier endorsed the Campaign, and made significant contributions to the Campaign’s design ahead of its roll out in Anambra State last year.
A number of other reputable Nigerian institutions partnering the OCI Foundation on this initiative include the Innoson Group, the NYSC (National Office), the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs (Nigeria), Nollywood Nigeria, the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, the Anambra Broadcasting Service (ABS), Silk Road Restaurant (Abuja), and the Post Primary Schools Service Commission, PPSSC (Anambra state), among others.
There are also plans to involve the Office of the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Nigeria’s Governor’s Forum (which includes the Governors of all the 36 States of Nigeria), and Nigeria’s Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).