On 15th May 2018, the United Nations Information Centre in collaboration with Women’s Board celebrated the International Day of Families. This year’s celebration was tagged ‘Families and Inclusive Societies’. It sought to explore the role of families and policies in advancing Sustainable Development Goal 16 in terms of Promoting Peaceful and Inclusive Societies for Sustainable Development.
The event which held at the United Nations Information Centre, Ikoyi-Lagos state had in attendance stakeholders and individuals committed to ensuring that the family which is the first school of every child is true to its role. Engr. Thad Eyinna, a speaker at the event shed more light on the role of the family emphasising that parents are the first educators before the school or the government. The task of creating dynamic and optimistic adults with the need to feel loved, secure and accepted lies more with the family.
The issue of effectively combining the home and workplace was addressed. Dr. Okechukwu Amah explained the need for favourable policies to be set up in the workplace to foster bonding of families. One of such policies is the maternal and paternal leave; emphasising the need for paternal leave which is seldom given to fathers. He encouraged parents to differentiate the workplace from the family and devote healthy time to each of them.
A panel discussion involving students from different schools was set up. Participants were students from Lagos Progressive Senior Secondary School Surulere, Community Senior Grammar School, Eric Moore Senior Secondary School and Whitesands College, Lekki. The discussion revolved around the effect of productivity on school children and also beamed light on areas parents should pay attention to especially as it pertains to sensitive issues like sex and drug.
Engr. Suruurah Yinka Ogunfemi while speaking on the topic “Discipline that Works”, explained that punishment is not always the best form of discipline. According to Dr. Ogunfemi, punishing your child can produce pain and shame which may not be corrective. The use of consequences as opposed to punishment should be employed but consequences must be respected, related to the offence, reasonable, revealed and repeated.