The Society of Women Accountants of Nigeria (SWAN) on Saturday donated some 50 copies of literature books to the library of Holy Child College, Obalende, Ikoyi in Lagos.

Chairperson of the Society, Mrs Nwamara Nnaji, said that the gesture was in commemoration of the 2021 International Day Of The Girl-Child.

Nnaji said the books would promote reading culture amongst the female students and boost their morale and self esteem.

The United Nations General Assembly, in December 2011, declared Oct. 11 of every year as The International Day of the Girl-Child to promote the rights of girls and address the challenges they face globally.

The theme of the 2021 International girl-child day is “My Voice; Our Equal Future.”

Nnaji said that one of the mandates of SWAN is empowering the girl-child and amplifying her voice, which is in tandem with the theme of this year’s celebration.

She said that members of the society do this through mentorship, inspiring the girl-child to soar and making her feel special.

The chairperson said they also did this by encouraging her to share stories about challenges faced and her under-recognised achievements.

“It is not anomaly to raise and address challenges that are peculiar to the girl child.

“A girl-child empowered leads to empowerment in all aspects of her identity, boldness, confidence, empowerment in areas of authority, resources utilisation, information dissemination and accountability,” she said.

According to her, the voice of the girl-child requires emphasis because of some circumstances in today’s society such as female discrimination, gender inequality, lack of access to education, health, amenities and economic opportunities.

Nnaji said that one critical benefit that needs amplifying by empowered girls voices is the financial independence of the female gender.

“A girl-child who attains financial independence insures her tomorrow and her future. This, invariably, cascades down to other people and other girl-child.

“An empowered girl-child is a powerful force to reckon with because this ensures that there are female representations in different socio-political and economic spheres of the nation.

Nnaji motivated the female students to own their voices and harness it to create a future where glass ceilings are easily shattered for those coming behind, to ensure that girls get the rights and privilege they deserve.

She encouraged the young girls to look up and emulate women who had forged ahead and created better tomorrow for themselves.

Nnaji said that eight female chartered accountants had been Presidents of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), including the current one.

She said that many were serving on the council of the institute.

The chairperson listed Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, first African female Director-General of the World Trade Organisation and newly appointed Vice -Chancellor, Lagos State University, Prof. Ibiyemi Olatunji-Bello; as role models.

She also cited many other captains of industry, institutes, banks and corporations.
Nnaji urged the female students to consider studying accountancy, describing it as a noble profession, and aspire to become chartered accountants.

In her response, the College Administrator, Rev. Sister Ebele Onochie, expressed her appreciation to SWAN for choosing the school as a beneficiary of their gesture.

She said presenting hard copies of the literature books was thoughtful of the society, as it would help promote reading culture among the girls.

Onochie said that many societies no longer believed in hard copies, but prefer soft copies.

The college administrator urged SWAN to sustain the programme with the college to help mentor the girls and present them as role models to the students.

”I urge the girls to dream big, be confident and focus on who God wants them to be,” she said.

In her remark, Mrs Titilayo Akinsanya, President, Old Girls Association, Holy Child College, lauded SWAN for the gesture and encouraged the young girls to be confident and always speak out.

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Akinsanya said that SWAN had been reaching out to the school before now because her old girls were making waves across industries even as Chief Executive Officers.

NAN reports that over 60 girls of the college attended the event and were mentored by the executive members of the society.

SWAN was inaugurated in 1978 and currently has over 13,000 members across the federation.

The society was established to assist ICAN in the protection of its charter, status and interest of the female members of the institute by promoting and maintaining high standards of efficiency and professional conduct. (NAN)