Norway has donated $11.5m approximately N3.6bn to improve basic education, support girls and women who have been victims of sexual violence by Boko Haram in conflict-affected northeast states.
The United Nation’s Children Fund Chief of Communication, Ms Doune Porter, in a statement on Saturday said that the benefiting states are; Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and Gombe.
“This fund would further boost access to education for an additional half a million boys and girls in internally displaced persons’ camps, host communities and areas of Borno that have become accessible to humanitarian assistance.’’
“The funding will also support approximately 1,600 of the thousands of girls and women that UNICEF estimates have been raped, abducted and forcibly married as a result of the conflict.
“Not only have these victims of violence suffered the trauma of their experiences when they were held by Boko Haram,
“But when they have managed to escape or have been liberated, they often face rejection by their communities and families.
“Instead of the escaped victims of violence being welcomed back, they frequently face stigma, discrimination, and in some cases violence, especially when they return pregnant or with children born out of that sexual violence.
“In addition to traditional stigma associated with sexual violence, many communities are afraid that girls and women who have been held by Boko Haram may have been indoctrinated by their captors.
“Part of the Norwegian funds will be used in Borno to help these women and girls to reintegrate with their families and communities and rebuild their lives.
“The funding will also help to empower these women and girls to engage in the community peace building process, ‘’Porter quoted the Norwegian Foreign Minister as saying in the statement.
Similarly, Mohamed Fall, UNICEF Nigeria Representative explained that tackling the crisis in northeast Nigeria required a broad coalition of support from all.