Rounded on the core objectives of empowering and showcasing successful families, the Family Youth Reorientation Path-Initiative (FEY-ReP), the Pet programme of the wife of the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Her Excellency, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel is one of the beacons of the Social Development Drive of the government of Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State.
With the initial take-oﬀ on the 21st of September 2015, Mrs. Udom Emmanuel booked a place in history when her ‘not-for-profit’ Non-Governmental Organization cum humanitarian platform, FEYReP was inaugurated. The inauguration was a pact with the people of the state to always stand in the gap of restoring hope, touching lives and the general empowerment of the disadvantaged segment of the Akwa Ibom society to rise above their in- capacities and chart a new course of capacities for the overall development of the state.
Two years down the line, FEYReP is beyond fluke; but an enigmatic complement to the breathtaking achievements of His Excellency, Gov. Udom Emmanuel. This is an encouraging synergy of the First family in Akwa Ibom State at the redemption of the social vulnerable, incapacities, inadequacies and other inequalities in the family and other extended Units of the society.
Imbued with confidence but unassuming simplicity, Mrs. Martha Emmanuel has positively provided lifelines for women, children, orphans, widows and the vulnerable constituents in and outside the state. Building on the successes of her husband, Mrs. Emmanuel’s FEY- ReP has instituted life transforming programmes in the state to which a larger spectrum of the society have benefitted within two years. Truth be told; She has introduced ‘another life’ for the downtrodden in Akwa Ibom State.
As a wonderful mother, Mrs. Martha Emmanuel believes that the family remains the bedrock of the society, as evidenced in her pet project which is poised to champion a State with successful families and responsible youths. Thus, it is beyond the rhetorics to categorically state that Her Excellency is out to better the lots of Akwa Ibom people. A case in point is the issue of multiple births which Her Excellency has turned the “mid-wife general” through the provision of financial support to enhance their daily upkeep.
In fact, her intervention for multiple births children and their parents apart from cash and medical assistance is complemented with a Forum for social awareness on multi- ple births, nutrition, health and child care.
In addition to the interventions in the health sector, children, the aged, and women which are the main thrust of her human intervention initiatives, there abound several testimonies from the beneficiaries of these interventions. It is worthy to note the humbling testimonies of Ms Victoria Mbat, a 21 year old girl who had been blind for over two years as a result of Type 1 Diabetes; and, Felix Idorenyin, a 10 year old boy with severe cataract who became blind when he was about eight months old. They are indeed “the walking megaphones” of the blessings of FEYReP and would live to research on the adjectives to describe Her Excellency’s kind gesture on their destinies.
Added to Mrs. Martha Emmanuel’s social empowerment programme is the issue of girl-child education and gender abuses. She has proven herself as a defender of the rights of the feminine folk, the carriers of destinies of unborn members of the society and general gender matters. To Her Excellency, what is sauce for the goose is no poison to the gander. She has tackled this phenomenon to a standstill through a combination of advocacy and direct interventions.
The physically challenged Factory, as well as Seafood Process- ing Factories across the three senatorial districts of the state. In Ikot Aba, Ibiono Ibom Local Government Area, the First Lady at the inauguration of FEYReP’s Cassava Process- ing Factory, said that the factory is aimed at reducing the stress associated with Garri production for the women of the area and boost their economic reliance. “This project was conceived to reduce the stress asso- ciated with Garri production. It is my hope and believe that with this factory, we will boost Garri production in the area and the State in general,” Her Excellency quipped.
FEYReP’s initiative knows no bounds as each new academic session presents an opportunity for the children of Divine Children Home Atan Oﬀot, Uyo, to be supported with educational materials such as books, school boxes, textbooks, uniforms etc. On what prompted this, Mrs. Emmanuel said, “in as much as I prepare my biological children for their academic endeavors, it’s incumbent on me as the State First Lady to also do same to these ones who are also my children.”
Known for her unassuming and humble disposition, Her Excellency, Mrs. Martha Emmanuel does not encourage the publicity of her humanitarian acts; but the plethora of beneficiaries of her social empowerment programmes notes that her acts of kindness are enough trumpets to blow itself. The towering profile and quantum of achievements recorded by the First Lady of Akwa Ibom State, Her Excellency, Mrs. Martha Emmanuel through FEYReP are unprecedented. It is a bold attempt at consolidating on the dividends of good governance led by her dear husband, His Excellency, Mr. Udom Emmanuel the Fourth Civilian Governor of Akwa Ibom State. These acts of compassion have touched many hearts and also attracts hon- our and plaudits across board.
As FEYREP promises to up the ante in the years ahead by adding value and raising the quality of lives of the people especially the indigents in the State, it promises to leave no stone un-turned in her avowed commitment to change the circumstances of the vulnerable in the land and exist as a reference point in the empowerment lexicon of Nigeria. No wonder Her Excellency’s bosom friend and Coordinator of FEYReP, Mrs. Ime Inyang concluded recently that, “our hope is to impact on the well-being of people to enable them attend optimal productivity both economically and socially.” She was full of confidence and satisfaction for number of lives touched by Her Excellency through FEYReP.