UK based NGO, Community Sport and Educational Development (CSED) has boosted the training of social work students and professionals in Nigeria by freely distributing 10,000 (ten thousand) drug education brochures to the six Social Work Departments in Nigeria. The universities that benefited from CSED’s kind gesture are UNN, Babcock University, Universities of Ibadan, Benin, Calabar and Lagos. These brochures which were produced and freely donated by an American NGO; “Foundation for a Drug Free World” will improve the understanding of the readers of the psychological, social and economic impact of drug abuse on the drug misuser, the family and the society at large.
An additional two thousand drug education brochures were donated to Basketball For Peace (Nigeria), Uselu Psychiatry Hospital, League Bloggers Awards 2017 and the Women Development Department of Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State.
This free brochures donation is the first time in the history of Social Work education in Nigeria, when an NGO activity has covered all the Social Work Departments in the country. CSED National Coordinator, Edema Fuludu stated that apart from CSED being actively involved in sports and educational training programmes in the Niger Delta area of Nigeria, CSED is willing and able to extend their literacy and safeguarding programmes to other parts of Nigeria. Furthermore, Edema Fuludu stated that two of CSED Trustees are experienced safeguarding professionals whose wealth of field work experience in Europe should be utilised in the training of safeguarding professionals in the education and social welfare sectors in Nigeria.
The Head of the Social Work Department of the University of Nigeria Nsukka, Professor Uzoma Okoye commended CSED for their small effort in inspiring and developing the current cohort of social work students in Nigerian universities. CSED noted that unlike in South Africa where there exist a close link between the social welfare sector, the universities and all levels of government; social work education and practice in Nigeria is still struggling to gain the respect and recognition of government officials in Nigeria, as more than half of the jobs in this sector are being carried out by non-social work graduates. In most developed countries, only a social work graduate who has registered with and is deemed to be of good character can work as and bear the title of a “social worker.”
Nigeria currently produces an average of 300 (three hundred) social workers, annually. The UK and USA have a large workforce of Nigerian social workers, most of them were not trained in Nigeria. The major goals of the Social Work Departments in Nigeria is to produce quality graduates that will meet the growing needs of the Nigerian welfare sector as well as the ever growing demand for the services of social workers in developed countries. The average starting salary of a social worker in the UK is £25,000 (twenty-five thousand pounds) per year. With two years work experience in Nigeria, Nigerian trained social worker like their counterparts that are trained in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Ghana have a good chance of getting a job in the UK. More interesting is the unwritten convention that allow social workers to practice in any country they migrate to without having to write professional examinations, unlike their Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy counterparts.
It would be recall that CSED is the first Nigerian NGO to embed safeguarding in the training of Teachers in Nigeria. This was done during their two days training of 50 Game Masters/Mistresses in Udu Local Government Area of Delta State that was held in the first week of October 2017. CSED is currently in discussion with two state governments in respect of holding some of their free Game Masters/Mistresses training programmes in the first quarter of 2018.
In 2018 CSED intends to train 500 (five hundred) Game Masters/Mistresses in the Niger Delta area and distribute 10,000 (ten thousand) free graphic comic books to primary and secondary school students in all Local Government Areas of Nigeria.