On 24 July 2021, a delegation from the Zonta International Club of Ibadan 1, paid a courtesy call on the Provost of the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Professor Olayinka O. Omigbodun. Zonta is a group of professionals working together across political and social boundaries to advance the status of women worldwide. The entourage came to formally appreciate the Provost for her unwavering support to the overall cause of the club. This they said she has demonstrated by consistently honouring the organization’s invitation to major events and helping to nurture the group towards greatness. The visiting Zonta team included the newly-installed President, Z. Olajumoke Akere; Z. Adekunle Adebayo (Secretary); Z. Mrs. Banjoko (Consultant to the club on E-learning); Eunice Olabisi (Volunteer) and Adedayo Adewunmi (Volunteer)
Speaking on behalf of the team, Mrs. Olajumoke Akere thanked the Provost for her very warm welcome. Stating the overriding goal of the visit, the President of the Zonta International Club of Ibadan 1 said, “The main objective of our visit is to extend the club’s deep gratitude to Professor Olayinka Omigbodun for her inspirational lecture during my installation ceremony as the new President of the Zonta International Club of Ibadan 1”. The lecture according to her was themed “Educating the Girl Child”. She thereafter reiterated the club’s commitment to supporting the Government and other stakeholders in the aspect of STEM education for the girl child, thus helping to keep more girls in school. As part of steps towards realizing this assignment, the Zonta club has begun visiting schools purposely to help reinstate out of school girls. According to Mrs. Akere, the Zonta club has been visiting schools where it is devising measures which include taking critical looks at records of absentees, tracking them to ascertain their statuses, while ultimately working to restore them to school. She went further to disclose that “special attention is being paid to girls whose mothers have become widows owing to the impacts of COVID-19”. Mrs. Olajumoke Akere thereafter solicited for the Provost’s additional support for the Zonta club in matters relating to the education of the girl child.
Responding, Professor Olayinka Omigbodun lauded the Zonta Club for its commitment to the advancement of the plights of girls in our society and beyond. She encouraged the organization to expand its strategies so as to also capture the plights of the male child in our society. She made reference to how increasing neglect of the male child in most empowerment programmes is gradually taking its toll on the fundamental cord that holds our society together, making it not to function optimally.
Replying to the Provost’s charge, Z. Olajumoke Akere noted that her organization values the place of the male child in the society and has begun to restructure her approach in such a way that will make it more inclusive of the male child. According to her, the education programme of the Zonta Club is beginning to reach out to mixed school (through the “He for she” programme) as this would serve as an avenue to reach the male children.
The Provost while appreciating the group for the visit commended the members for their foresight and efforts geared towards the upliftment of the society. She assured them of her unwavering support for their life changing interventions.