Thursday, 14 December 2017

Obaze, Asika, Methodists Bishop, others celebrate end of year party with APLSCD

 By Okechukwu Onuegbu

Aisha Edward

R-L, Rev. Fr. Barr Obiora and Ven. Joel

Ejim, Rev. Fr. Obiorah and Ven. Joel

It was a celebration galore for Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Anaemia Disorder (APLSCD) as the group joined one of its chaplains, Rev. Fr. Barr. Obiorah Okeke on the association’s annual get-together cum Christmas party/carol of nine lessons of the Austica Memorial College, Nanka, Orumba South, Anambra State.

The event which begun with mass (church service), featured carol of nine lessons, dancing, masquerade parades and drama, also had in attendance APLSCD benefactors and their representatives namely, Board Chairman, Hon. Chief. Sylvester Nwobualor , Rev.Fr. Cosmos Ebebe, Chaplains, Rev. Fr. Barr. Obiora Okeke, who incidentally is the group’s legal adviser and host of the event.

Others were Ven. Akunazobi, Rev.Can.Maduka and Rev. Ejim, Health Managers, Dr. John Aneke and Lady Adaora Onyeliri, Director Nursing, Prof. Stella Okunna, Dean NAU Faculty of Social Sciences, members and Staff of NAUTH Ukpo, Dr. Mrs Ofunne Obaze and Mrs Chiaza Asika ,Anambra State Government, students of the seminary school and Girls High School, Nanka, to mention a few.
In an interview, the host and APLSCD Catholic chaplain, Rev. Fr. Barr. Obiorah Okeke, while saying that he decided to identify with the people to show them that they are part of the society, called for collaborative efforts with the society, government and other relevant authorities to putting an end to sickle cell anemia disease through sensiisation campaigns through APLSCD.

Speaking also, Ven. Joel Akunosobi, who represented Bishop Owen Nwokolo of Diocese on the Niger, Anglican Communion, called on the society to give sicklers necessary support to live in peace and harmony, even as he re-emphasised the need for intending couples’ to always undergo genetic diagnoses to ensure their compatibility before marriage.

On his part, Rev. John Madueke Ejim, who represented the Rt. Revd. B. L. Onuagha of Methodist Church of Nigeria, Onitsha Diocese, said that church remains the panacea to the challenges facing sicklers such as abandonment, isolation and loneliness, prayed God to grant people heart and grace to show them love, care and cherishment.

In her address, the National Coordinator of APLSCD, Aisha Edward, while thanking their benefactors on their various contributions to move the association forward, recalled that APLSCD recorded tremendous successes notwithstanding it various challenges including death of its 13 Members.

Edward enumerated some of their achievements to include sickle cell special clinic built and donated to them by Prince Engr. Arthur Eze, collaboration and historic outing with the Nigerian Army at Enugu, Ebonyi State Government and Anambra State Respectively, donations of surgically equipped first aid kits branded in her name which were further distributed to their members.

Others were publications of the Association’s sensitization booklets for onward distribution and circulation across schools in the state as part of their campaigns and genetic education in schools and churches, payment of members’ school fees.

She, however, regretted that the Association has given up its rented and furnished accommodation due to lack of fund, and solicited for support of the general public to acquire a bus which they would be using to run their timely affairs, as well as accommodations, computers, printers, sewing machines, photocopiers and other necessary equipment to quip the group’s skills acquisition centre and members, who were recently trained on the various fields.

“We shall commission our Skilled Acquisition Center in 2018. Currently APLSCD had Secured a warehouse where her members could be trained on various Skills to empower her members who need to be meaningfully engage without being a societal burden or liability to parents and Society while waiting on the Government Endless Promises to come to Fulfilment. The Association really needs some financial support to make this a dream come true for her members and to Augment the two sowing machines donated by Prof. Stella Okunna and Christian Council of Nigerian Youths Anambra State,” she added.



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