Monday, August 11, 2014
Disadvantaged Young People.
Working with young people and women in the past years has been memorable. It has been a humbling experience. Nostalgically, I remember when I would take some time off work to visit schools in the neighbourhood, just to speak with young people, motivate them and support their academic pursuit. It wasn’t a pleasant ride most of the times, but it was worth it, an awesome experience, interacting with young minds.
The motivation to get closer to the youth was borne out of the passion to make a difference and help improve on their academic performance. The WAEC result has not been fairer since 2008. It’s been deteriorating, poor. So, in 2008, we came up with a mentoring scheme, tagged: youth mentoring youth. And, here on Facebook, I had it shared on my wall, requesting for volunteer youth mentors….amazingly, we had good responses from people willing to ‘mentor a child’ (thank you forever, we love you). Consequently, same year, we paired some High School students with young professionals and matured adult for a 6-month mentoring program. A work in progress, it was…it is. J And, despite the work schedules and ‘peculiarity’ of Lagos, we had mentors visiting young people’s home, school, showing some care, rendering help, encouragement where needed. It was overwhelming, thoughtful…And, these were people we met via social platforms. Yeah! Undoubtedly, behind those FB status updates and profiles, emails are some amazing people with great heart, absolutely. This, I learnt. Supporting the education programs (WAEC, NECO, GCE, JAMB) of over 100 disadvantaged young people, Registering street kids in private schools etc. has not been without this collaborative support and funding received. #Gracias.
There have been days and months and years when more than 90% of my Facebook posts and status update got to do with request for support for the disadvantaged children. Hey! I have not rescinded, but re-strategizing!!! For the need to help cannot be overemphasised...
I guess my interaction this afternoon with a 14year old boy and victim of a failed marriage inspired this post. John (not real name) has spent more than 11 years without a parent. He lives in the rural community and attends our summer digital literacy program. An intelligent boy, he is. But, he’s really got some tragic tales to share. The underlining fact is that we have sponsored the education programs, supported, and mentored more young people from failed marriages than none. They need help, prayers, support.
Once again, Special shouts out to e v e r y child sponsor, mentor and friends of Street2School Initiative. You have been amazingly terrific. J Thank you for everything, God bless you more.