New Telegraph

Agric-Biotech group institutes grant for media practitioners

The Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology (OFAB) in Africa said it has instituted a special grant to encourage media practitioners, while they strive for productivity and excellence in their chosen career. This disclosure was made during the inaugural OFAB Day programme, which was recently celebrated in several African countries including Nigeria through the sponsorship of African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF). The executive director of AATF, Dr. Canisius Kanangire, who spoke via zoom, said the media has pioneered effective communication which in no small measures has deepened the acceptance of biotechnology in Africa.

The first phase of the grant which two Nigerian broadcast and Print Journalists got, alongside other beneficiaries from other African countries, was said to have been conceived to help in building the capacity of hardworking media practitioners, and also ameliorate their plights. Kanangire particularly gave glowing accolade to Nigerian Journalists for promoting public knowledge leading to its environmental and commercial release of the pod-borer resistant cowpea. Speaking at the event, the Director-General of the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), Prof. Abdullahi Mustapha, said OFAB in Africa, has contributed significantly to educating the populace on the importance of adopting biotechnology in growing agriculture and food production.

Earlier in her speech, the Country Coordinator, OFAB Nigeria, Dr. Rose Gidado, said the grant programme would accommodate more qualified journalists who are ready to contribute to the development of scientific research and communications. Stakeholders to deliberate on mental health issues as OISA Foundation host wellness conference Stakeholders will on Friday October 8 converge at the OISA Foundation Mental Wellness Conference to heighten the conversation on the critical role that mental wellness plays in the wellbeing of adolescents and young adults in Nigeria.

The 4th edition of the annual Conference tagged “Adolescent Mental Wellness & Resilience in An Unequal World” will have a behavioural Psychologist and life coach, Mr. Lanre Olushola, lead a team of other discussants in heightening conversation and attention around the increasing issues and challenges of mental health on youths and young adults in Nigeria.

The event was planned to commemorate the World Mental Health Day celebrated globally on October 10. This year’s edition of the conference which will be a hybrid event will take place in Lagos and also on the Zoom video conferencing platform.

Addressing the media recently on the plans for the conference, the Chairperson, OISA Foundation, Mrs. Olapeju Sofowora noted that, “Though the twin objectives of creating awareness amongst parents and caregivers of the mental pressures and challenges faced by their children in today’s society and providing practical guidelines to tackling these challenges have been achieved by the success of the three previous editions of the conference, there remains a lot more to be done to help school administrators, parents, caregivers and children develop a better understanding of the mental issues that negatively influence young people and highlight the mental health services and treatment options that are available.”

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