UNITAMS Holds Outreach Activity in the Central States
As part of a nation-wide outreach effort to present the mission, its mandate and introduce the UN to the general population, a UNITAMS team visited Sudan’s central states last week. The activity aimed at raising awareness on the mission’s priorities and activities and promoting practical measures to involve stakeholders from states’ governments, civil society, academia, media, and other relevant partners.
The tour started in Al-Jazirah state, where the team visited Rufa’a, the birthplace of the first secular school for girls in Sudan in 1907 and held a dialogue with faculty and students at al-Butana University. They continued to Wad Madani, the state capital, for a courtesy call with the governor, Mr. Abdullah Ahmed Ali Idris, to whom they outlined the purpose of the visit, and discussed problems and challenges facing the state, especially in the areas of health and education and opportunities for engagement with partners.
After a visit to the state radio and TV, the delegation met with the Vice-Chancellor and staff of Al Jazirah university, one of the largest colleges in the country.
A key component of the campaign was the presentation of videos in Arabic on UN and UNITAMS respectively.
Students were happy to receive the team and had a lively discussion, questions, and answers on the UN, UNITAMS, and the political transition in Sudan.
Leaving the cotton-producing state, the team drove south to the adjacent state, where interesting discussions took place with students and faculty of the Sennar University, the only higher education university throughout all the state.
Upon arrival to Sinjah, the state capital, our team was welcomed by Mr. Al-Mahi Muhammed Suleiman Al-Mahi, governor of Sennar State. In addition to UNITAMS role in the country and the political transition, discussions focused on the challenges faced during the rainy season, the impact of poor infrastructure, and the floods affecting the local population.
The next stop in Sinjah was the local radio and TV stations, headed by the energetic Ms. Nahed Shashok, who was able to build up programing on both stations despite inheriting old and malfunctioning equipment.
For the last leg of the trip, the team moved from the agriculture state of Sennar to industrial Rabak, state capital of White Nile State. Under a cloudy sky and some light rain, they learned about the challenges facing the state TV and radio because of the limited support available.
The day after, the team was received with welcoming banners at Al-Imam Al Mahdi University in Kosti, where the staff and students were eager to learn more about what UNITAMS is doing to support the political transition. The discussion on UNITAMS’ four strategic objectives were lively and educational for all! Students were keen to better understand the role of UNITAMS and UN in supporting the transition.
Before heading back to Khartoum, the delegation stopped in Ed Doueim, where the Vice-Chancellor of Bakht Al-Ruda University and the faculty were waiting for them. During the briefing, students from all five faculties listened carefully and shared hopes and fears for the future of their country. The delegation was impressed by the commitment of both teachers and youth.
Finally, at the nearby National Center for Curriculum and Educational Resources, the team was received by the experts in charge of drafting the curriculum for schools across the country. Discussions focused on the difficulties in updating the curriculum and innovative ways to reach children nationwide.