Abuja, Nigeria – U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Maria Brewer today announced the award of an $801,000 grant by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in humanitarian assistance for internally displaced populations in Jimeta and Yola in Adamawa State. The grant will support the activities of the American University of Nigeria, Yola to improve access to education services for internally displaced populations (IDPs). With this new funding, total U.S. humanitarian assistance grants to AUN since the start of the insurgency crisis in the region is nearly $901,000.
Speaking during the grant signing ceremony, Ms. Brewer said, “Education positively affects people’s economic development and general health, while also advancing civil rights.” She added, “Where education is lacking, people are less likely to attain economic opportunity, which leads to greater poverty and, in too many places, opens the doors to extremism and violence.”
USAID Mission Director Michael T. Harvey signed the grant agreement with the American University of Nigeria in the presence of the U.S. chargé d’affaires and key Nigerians from academe.
The funding will provide education services for children and youth living in IDP camps and in host communities.
The United States Government through its Agency for International Development (USAID) is supporting several humanitarian, transitional, and longer-term development activities in northeastern Nigeria, totaling $87.1 million, in collaboration with the Nigerian government at the federal, state, and local levels. Current and forthcoming activities will improve governmental capacity and performance, strengthen food security and water policy, expand the reach and effectiveness of health and education initiatives, and provide services for internally displaced persons.
Role of the American University of Nigeria (AUN)
American University of Nigeria will use its Student Empowerment through Language, Literacy, and Arithmetic (STELLAR) Program to improve literacy and numeracy for 20,000 vulnerable, at-risk children, orphans of IDPs and host communities in Yola State.
The STELLAR Program engages university students enrolled in service learning courses to write children’s books in English and local languages and to tutor children in reading and mathematics after school. Under this USAID-funded grant, STELLAR will expand to include radio instruction, setup of learning centers and mobile classrooms, and provide IDP beneficiaries with remote instruction via radio.