The wife of Ondo State Governor, Mrs Betty Akeredolu yesterday said that about 5000 pregnant women would receive free birth kits in the state this year. Speaking on activities of Office of the First Lady of Ondo State in the past three years, Mrs Akeredolu said that the SOLAYO Birth Kits had arrived and set to reach the pregnant women.
“The provision of the kits would help to reduce the proportion of maternal deaths linked to unskilled birth deliveries and poor antenatal and postnatal care.
“Solayo, which means “Safe delivery” in Yoruba, is an initiative of the wife of the Ondo State Governor was launched in 2019 to promote safe motherhood and reduce maternal and child deaths.She narrated.
The initiative deploys Solayo kits: containing essential delivery materials required by pregnant women for free to pregnant women, especially at the grassroots. She explained that since its introduction in 2019, not less than 1080 birth kits had been distributed across the 18 local government areas of Ondo State.
“The goal is to search for pregnant women from the grassroots that are unable to afford these essential birth items and empower them with the Solayo kits. The initiative aims to reach out to at least 5000 women with free birth kits before the end of 2020.
“Nigeria’s poor indices for maternal mortality, is reported to be about 814 per 100, 000 live births as at 2015, a value that puts the nation second globally in terms of maternal deaths.
“A number of well researched factors are responsible for maternal deaths, top among which are poor antenatal and postnatal care and unskilled birth delivery. “These factors and many others interplay to influence maternal mortality rates,” according to the 2016 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) data.
She further revealed that her pet sports programme, “Arabirin Junior Tennis Club” (AJTC), was established in September 2017 to improve the lawn tennis skill of talented young boys and girls in Ondo State.
The club is an offshoot of the Summer Tennis Clinic organised yearly by the Office of the First Lady of Ondo State. She stressed that the initiative had recorded remarkable achievement and had access to two standard tennis courts with over 200 children being trained on a weekly basis. The governor’s wife said that children with outstanding performance were frequently sponsored to go for competitions in Lagos. “During the ‘PLAY YOUR AGE’ competition held in Abuja in 2019, Aina Henry, one of the AJTC players, was ranked the 3rd best player for the male category in Nigeria. “Adeyemi Ronke (another AJTC player), was ranked as 3rd best player for the female category in Nigeria and Arabirin Junior Tennis Club brought victory home by clinching gold medal in the competition sponsored by NNPC. “We are practically building the children of Ondo State to be well positioned to tap into the wealth that abounds in the world of sports,” she said. (NAN)