….Raises Hope For Children with Disabilities
A non- governmental organisation, Lifeline Organization for Children Empowerment (LOCE) has in its advocacy for Inclusive Education raised hope for children with disability in our society.
The founder and Executive Director of LOCE, Ngozichukwuka Obiyo dropped the hint while talking on driving sustained action for inclusive education for special needs’ children in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
According to her, the organisation’s campaigns have increased awareness on the policies supporting inclusive education for special needs’ children in Rivers State including but not limited to the National Policy on Education, National Policy on Special Education as well as Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act adding that Article 24 of the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities are now being promoted in communities, schools and offices.
“LOCE’s project suggests that it is time to begin to solve the problem of exclusion in education in Rivers State.
LOCE is therefore promoting Inclusive Education that allows children with disabilities to learn in the same classroom with their peers who do not have disabilities”, she disclosed
The founder of LOCE maintained that inclusion is beyond integration or main streaming children with disabilities in schools adding that inclusive education breaks barriers, provides accessible environment and play ground, makes room for curriculum modification, creates room for adaptation, provide the appropriate learning resources and individual education plan, as well as provides the children with other support services needed to help each child achieve learning goals.
She also said that LOCE project is sensitising key stakeholders on the policies regarding inclusive education, while promoting the implementation of enhanced education and equal opportunities for children with disabilities in Rivers State.
Ngozichukwka expressed hope that LOCE was building an active and sustainable platform through the Inclusive Education Alliance that would continue to promote and advocate for inclusive education until it becomes a norm and fully implemented in line with the Sustainable Development Goals and the United Nations Convention of Right of Persons with Disabilities respectively in Rivers State.
On the approaches LOCE is employing she stated that stakeholders’ consultation, advocacy visits, workshops, roundtable meetings, radio talk shows, social media strategies and media engagements are being used to implement the project and drive home the message.