The Members of St. Rita’s Society, St. Peter’s Parish, University of Uyo, Uyo were at Mobile Manna Foundation’s Project Office, 15 Ikot Mbonde Road, Off Nelson Mandela Road, Itam, Uyo on 22nd May, 2012 to mark their Feast-day Celebration 2012. The group was led by their President, Mrs. Florence Obaika. Speaking, Mrs. Obaika introduced members of the Society who were with her, including the Vice President, Mrs. Florence Anyanso, as well as the President of Catholic Women Organization of their parish, Mrs. Henrietta Okafor. Among the visitors was the widow of late Prof. Etop Usore, Mrs Elizabeth Usoro. She presented a token of encouragement to the Foundation, explaining that since the Government is not doing enough to cater for the welfare of the abandoned mentally ill persons in the society, the members of St. Rita’s Society considered it appropriate to support groups who are assisting in this regard such as the MMF.
In his response, the Founder/CEO of MMF, Fr Donatus Ukpong welcomed the guests and took them on a virtual tour of the Project Office of the Foundation. He thanked them for appreciating and recognizing what MMF is doing for the less privileged members of the society, especially the mentally ill persons. Fr Ukpong informed the guests that the Foundation gives food to mentally ill persons in Uyo metropolis regularly, picks some of them from the streets and send them to Mental Health Department of University of Uyo Teaching Hospital (UUTH), Uyo for both medical and psychiatric care with the view to rehabilitating and reintegrating them into the society. Their bills and sustenance are taken care of by the Foundation through support from members and other men and women of good will. He cited Kelechi Enweruzo’s case as a recent example.
Furthermore, Fr Ukpong indicated that an urgent need of the Foundation is to rent a facility to serve as temporary Mental Health Rehabilitation and Research Centre (Pilgrims Home) in Uyo metropolis. In addition, Fr Ukpong informed them that the Foundation runs “Manna Bank” at St. Paul’s Parish, West Itam, where food-stuffs are provided for the challenged and less privileged persons. Also, he remarked that the MMF is interested in promoting democracy, and rural development, thereby invited them to identify always with the Foundation and perhaps to register as members. He prayed that the situation of mentally ill persons wandering about in the streets will soon become something of the past in Nigeria.
In his conclusion, he thanked St. Rita’s Society for visiting MMF and prayed the almighty God to bless them for identifying with the vision and mission of the Foundation. Together, lets’ raise the bar of hope!
Mr. Anietie Umanah