Mrs Itoro Eze-Anaba, Founder of Mirabel Sexual Assault Referral Centre(right), receiving an appreciation plaque from the Regional Director, British Council, Mr. Moses Anibaba, during the 75th anniversary event in Lagos.
The British Council has commended Mirabel Centre for providing “holistic and high quality medical and psychosocial services to survivors of sexual assault and rape.”
The commendation came just as the Council’s 12-month “Thanks to You” 75th anniversary celebration is coming to an end. It started in June 2019.
A statement by the Council, on Wednesday, said: “British Council Nigeria has been in Nigeria since 1944 and, every year, we reach out to students, educators, policymakers, academics, researchers, creatives and entrepreneurs in Nigeria to change lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust.
“One project we are proud of is the Mirabel Centre, Nigeria’s first Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC).
“It was championed by Itoro Eze-Anaba, a participant of our programme. The centre was established with our support in 2013 and managed by Partnership for Justice (PJ).
“It provides holistic and high quality medical and psychosocial services to survivors of sexual assault and rape. We have since set up 11 more assault centres across Nigeria.”
It added that the anniversary celebration comes to an end this week, commencing June 8.
The Council explained that “we launched the “Thanks To You” campaign aimed at recognising as well as celebrating the thousands of participants, who have taken advantage of the various programmes on offer at the British Council to transform their lives and those of their local communities in Nigeria.
“We also work with a number of international partners to fund key programmes in Nigeria such as the EU-Funded Managing Conflict in Nigeria; Justice for All; Nigeria Stability and Reconciliation Programme (NSRP); The Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC) and, more recently, the Kano Literacy and Maths Accelerator project (KaLMA).
“As part of our anniversary celebration, we invited past participants of our programmes to submit stories of their experiences as part of our 75 Stories initiative to recognise and thank them for making a difference to society.
“We also had several events in Lagos, Kano and Abuja where our new state-of-the art building was commissioned by His Excellency the Vice-President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.
“He described the British Council as ‘a success story in all ramifications’. The Vice President was ably represented by the Honourable Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada.”
It noted that to conclude the year-long celebration, “we have launched a week long ‘finale-quiz’ competition to invite all Nigerians to participate in our anniversary event before it ends on the June 14 and also win prizes for engaging with the 75 Stories published on our website.”
The Council also mentioned some of its achievements in Nigeria.
According to the body, 2,935 teachers have been trained through schools and English language programmes since 2018; more than 3,900 students across 26 schools have gained access to an international dimension in their education through the International School’s Award to help them prepare for successful future careers in an increasingly global economy.
Also, over 117,352 internationally-recognised exams were taken by Nigerians connecting them to worldwide learning opportunities, helping to improve their life chances.
In addition, it added, 4,832 artists were provided with empowerment opportunities through training and networking platforms in 2018.
It noted that “the British Council works with more than 10 million people every year out of offices in Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt reaching audiences of more than 52 million.
“The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities.
“We create friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries. We do this by making a positive contribution to the UK and the countries we work with.”