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Kaduna Polo Club teams up with UNICEF to fight HIV/AIDS - As Emir of Katsina Charity Shield Polo Tournament ends

Polo Tournament supports UNICEF
© UNICEF Nigeria/2008/Adeshida
MD Access Bank Plc., Mr. Aig Aig-Imokhuede (r) presents a cheque of N6,000,000.00 to the Deputy Country Representative UNICEF, Mr. Mamman Sidikou during the closing of the Charity Shield Polo Tournament at the Fifth Chukker Kangini Resorts, Kaduna.

Kaduna, 8 June, 2008 - The Polo tournament for the Emir of Katsina Charity Shield organised by Fifth Chukker today raised six million naira to support UNICEF’s Children and AIDS programme. The cheque was presented to UNICEF at the end of a week long competition in Kaduna. The money goes towards providing support specifically to orphans and vulnerable children in Nigeria.

The tournament, which brought together international and national players to play for charity, further reinforced our drive to uniting for children. The UNICEF Cup was one of the four cups competed for during the five day tournament. To encourage children participation in polo, the cup featured the ‘Work to Ride’ team made up of children and ladies from the USA and South Africa. The participation of children in the tournament is another milestone in promoting the rights of every child to leisure, play and participation on issues affecting them.

“UNICEF is one of our partners and proceeds raised go towards uplifting of the Nigerian child. The partnership with Fifth Chukker, which started in 2006, provides a good platform to UNITE FOR CHILDREN and demonstrate our commitment to the cause of the Nigerian child” said Umaru Aliyu, Fifth Chukker tournament Manager.

Nigeria has an estimated eight million orphans, 930,000 of which are orphaned by AIDS.

Last year’s launch of the OVC National Plan of Action 2006 – 2010 and the creation of a special unit for orphans and vulnerable children by the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs have provided the needed impetus and framework for the acceleration of the national response on orphans and vulnerable children. Within this framework, UNICEF is working through a coalition of civil society organisations to provide care and support services to orphans and vulnerable children in the country.

This third consecutive donation from the Fifth Chukker polo tournament will go a long way in consolidating project interventions started with the initial donation. The gesture is a demonstration of the call for a renewal of commitment for children in this year’s Children’s Day celebration. We call on all stakeholders- governments at all levels, the Private Sector, Civil Society Organisations and the Media to unite for Nigerian Children by making practical contributions to their welfare and the realisation of their rights as enshrined in the constitution, the Child’s Rights Act, the UBE Act, the Conventions on the Rights and the AU charter on the Rights of African Children.

“UNICEF hopes the tournament will continue be a strong vehicle for stakeholders, including the private sector, to appreciate the challenges facing children affected by AIDS and provide the necessary support needed to alleviate their problems”, said Dr. Maman Sidikou, UNICEF’s Deputy Representative.

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