The Chairman, Organizing Committee of the Oratory Movie Special Screening, Gbenga Adebija, has said beyond being a movie, The Oratory has highlighted the key responsibilities of Nigerians toward ameliorating the challenges that internally displaced children are exposed to.
Speaking during a press conference in Lagos, Mr. Adebija explained that The Oratory is an integral aspect of a broader multi-dimensional initiative which the Executive Producer of the Movie, Dr. Cyril Odia, Nigerian priest of the Order of St Don Bosco presently serving in Dublin, Ireland, and his fellow Salesians are passionately committed to bringing to fruition.
Adebija said “The Oratory is not the destination, it is a milestone on the journey. The end game is to create an inclusionary framework for the upliftment of homeless, delinquent, and juvenile youths who are at risk of negative societal situations such as violence, sexual abuse, trafficking, and crime.”
Corroborating Adebija about the impact that The Oratory seeks to achieve, Director of the project and development officer, Maximus Okoro revealed that over 15 children in need have been integrated since January 2022 adding that team is willing to partner with the Lagos state government with the aim of reintegrating between 60 to 80 children in need back to the society.
Okoro added that “Oratory movie is an initiative yearning towards the dream and hope of all our children especially those abandon on the street to give them a home and a shelter, a home that welcome, educates, rehabilitates and gives them the skills necessary to face the challenges and difficulties of life.”
The Coordinator, Don Bosco Child Protection Centre, Fr. Linus Nkemjinaka, explained that every child needs a better home and the Centre is positioned to make sure that every child discovers his or her potential.
“Our society shouldn’t kill the talent of the children, and that is why we search for them and make them realize how important their existence is to society. Our society can never do without the children,” Fr. Nkemjinaka added.
The Oratory, which premiered in 2021, is a globally acclaimed movie that raised awareness amongst key stakeholders on the issue of internally displaced children throughout Nigeria. It was filmed at various locations in Rome, Atlanta, Lagos, and Turin and features Nigerian and international movie stars such as Eyinna Nwigwe, Rich Lowe, Celeste Marcone, Shane Guilbeau, Florence Okechukwu, Lawrence Nwali, among others, and directed by Obi Emelonye.