1 GAME Campaign
Backed by a movement of thousands of people, 1 GAME achieves change through advocacy. It urges political and government leaders in Nigeria to make commitments to improve education standards and hold them to account for the commitments they've made. It raises awareness and mobilizes citizens, friends and well-wishers who inspire, move from house to house and advocate to ensure that every Nigerian child, particularly street children or Almajiris living in violence-prone North-East Nigeria, have access to free and qualitative basic education. It sees education as the biggest tool that can be used to defeat violence, poverty and ignorance in the region. In addition, it supports children from disadvantaged homes with the basic tools they need to achieve better education. It also supports accountability and transparency to ensure policies to improve education are implemented effectively.
1 GAME seeks to ensure that every Nigerian child, particularly Almajiri children in northeastern Nigeria, enroll in school, receive quality education and complete primary school, by mobilizing and raising public awareness, providing basic educational support for disadvantaged school children, and pressuring political and government leaders to support effective policies and programs that are enabling access to quality education.
It sees education as the most efficient tool that can be used to defeat violence, poverty and ignorance.
HOW THE OBJECTIVES WERE ACHIEVED
1 GAME's approach is -
It partners with communities, youths, adults and organizations who are working on the ground to provide access to quality education.
1 GAME works with states in Nigeria that have the most children out of school (particularly North-East states), as well as states where there are real problems that we can help solve.
1 GAME works with the most recent and comprehensive data and research that is available.
In other to deal with major challenges hindering Almajiris in Borno State from getting quality education, 1 GAME introduced a project called ‘Off The Streets’, targeted at the 1.8 million vulnerable children who miss out of learning.
Off The Streets is a community project working for Almajiris in Borno State who are facing challenges of exclusion from school, ignorance, recruitment into insurgent groups, neglect and abuse. It supports these children by catering for them through the provision of food and clothing and at the same time prepare them for western education through our mentoring program.
Off The Streets Project recognize that in terms of disadvantage, there is no group in Nigeria facing more challenges than Almajiris in Borno.
- In June 2014, 1 GAME got the Cross River State Universal Basic Education Board (Nigeria) to make a promise to inject additional U$D 300,000 to cover costs of exam fees for 360,000 pupils attending public schools in Cross River State.
- From August to October 2014, 1 GAME carried out an Access Campaign for School Enrolment in Borno, Yobe and Gombe States and met with nearly 100 community leaders in the three states aimed at raising a volunteering team to move house to house, calling on parents to send their children to school. Collectively, our volunteers reached out to nearly 500 families with over 75% of them responding positively. We provided 100,000 exercise books and pens to nearly the same number of children in Borno and Gombe States. Nearly 99% of recipients were children attending school for their first time.
- Through its 1 Book – 1 Pen initiative, 1 GAME has donated exercise books and pens to primary school children in Abuja, Cross River, Lagos and Rivers States in Nigeria.
The Islamist militant group, Boko Haram is no doubt the biggest threat to education in north-eastern Nigeria. Its consistent attacks on schools have made the goals of ‘Education For All’ difficult to achieve in the region. Though a real solution to the Boko Haram insurgency is yet to be found, 1 GAME is working alongside very numerous organizations to make schools in northern Nigeria safe places to learn, through the Safe Schools Initiative.
Cultural bias is a major cause of poor enrollment, particularly for girls in northern Nigeria. Most parents prefer to send their children to Qur’anic schools rather than formal schools. To deal with this issue, 1 GAME has had to involve traditional and religious leaders in creating awareness on the benefits of formal education in many communities in Borno, Yobe and Gombe states. 1 GAME volunteers also had to talk to community members about getting involved in dealing with the issue at mosques, churches, a work and at home.
1 GAME has no doubt learnt about the importance of effective partnership. From being an initiative that works solo and struggles to make an impact, it has in the last eighteen months achieved better results through gainful collaboration.
For example: Off The Streets is a project that works across Borno state ensuring the rights, needs and aspirations of Almajiris are considered in all activities and programs. Involving children in the state has been effective because the project works in partnership with Almajiri Mallams (Teachers), government agencies and community members with the aim of continual and lasting improvement in outcomes for the children involved.