Archive | November 2015

#20. Postcards From Africa | Fundamentals of Human Dignity by Pius Adesanmi

Human Dignity

#PostcardsFromAfrica An old post by Pius Adesanmi, I posted it a few years ago and based on recent events in Nigeria, I think it’s worth re-posting again. All the salient issues he raised then are still very relevant today. Enjoy!

By Prof. Pius Adesanmi [Culled from his Facebook Page on December 16, 2013, and re-posted here]

Fundamentals of Human Dignity. A multilevel compulsory subject to be taught from Primary One to Primary Six, from JSS One to SSS Three, from One Hundred Level to Four Hundred Level. APC Ogas if you are interested in building this into your vision, call me. You have my number. I wanted folks to know that I suggested this to you so we don’t turn it into behind-the-scenes backpatting talks (brilliant idea, Prof, we shall do it and it is not done); so that you don’t say that nobody drew your attention to the matter.

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#AssociationofNigerianAuthors ANA Review 2015. Editorial Note: A Summing Up By Richard ALI

ANA Literary Review Journal 2015 by Richard AliImage credits: Musa Tukurah [@musatukurah on #Instagram]

[Culled from the Facebook Page of Richard ALI; Accessed on November 13, 2015 @ 2.28 pm]

Editorial Note: A Summing Up By Richard ALI

Note: (ANA Review 2015 will be published on November 13)

Writing this Editorial is a historic undertaking for me, beyond the mere pleasure of it. It commemorates the anniversary of the Association of Nigerian Authors convention at Abuja, four years ago, when I was elected Publicity Secretary [North]. In the last four years, I have crossed this country—from Birnin Kebbi to Port Harcourt to Jos—in the service of Nigerian writing. I have also had my proudly Nigerian passport stamped at Nairobi, Entebbe, Kigali, Paris, Frankfurt and elsewhere in this same service, for which I dedicated my travels official and unofficial.

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Postcards From Africa – Mission: Educate a Girl (EAG)

In this photo taken Monday, May 19, 2014, Solome Ishaya, sister of kidnapped school girls Hauwa Ishaya stands outside their family house in Chibok, Nigeria. More than 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped from a school in Chibok in Nigeria's north-eastern state of Borno on April 14. Boko Haram claimed responsibility for the act. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)

In this photo taken Monday, May 19, 2014, Solome Ishaya, sister of kidnapped school girls Hauwa Ishaya stands outside their family house in Chibok, Nigeria. More than 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped from a school in Chibok in Nigeria’s north-eastern state of Borno on April 14. Boko Haram claimed responsibility for the act. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)

Summary

Educate a Girl (EAG), Nigeria, is about giving girls in need the ability to transform their lives, enter the workforce & have a voice in the media. $100 covers the entire vocational education in media studies for one girl in Nigeria, as well as further personal and professional grooming.

We strive to be transparent: we employ a world-class audit firm, document each girl’s education and connect her to her donor. Join us in not only educating 1 girl, but 500 in Nigeria!

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WWN™ Reflections by @JulietKego: As we wind down the year….

#YearEndReflections Two more trainings to facilitate and it’ll be a wrap for the year!

‪#‎SEED4Her‬ #‎EducateAGirl‬ Next WWN™ project loading

We waste so much resources on frivolities and yet just a little tweak in our mindset can totally shift the trajectory of someone’s life (and ours too). I’ve seen generational chains, patterns of poverty and under-development broken by simply equipping youths with the right skill set to make a difference.

Members of our team at WWN™ have seen young girls and boys find their voices and their places, in an often chaotic world that is always trying to box them in. And with proper mentorship, they break out of those set frames to create an amazing splash and value in their worlds. Sometimes, we tend to think the problem is a lack of money and yet that’s the least of it. One of the greatest gifts we can offer young people is mentorship.

We’ve seen people in under-served areas take loans and actually pay back after they set up successful businesses or train themselves by acquiring some marketable skills. I’ve had strangers give scholarships just after random conversations. Look around you and make a difference.

There were periods when requests for sponsorships and grants would come in and some angel investors sold some of their pieces of my jewelry and then, seen how the proceeds created a golden future for youths, especially girls – survivors of rape and sexual assault. To see them soar after a long time of poor self-image when they thought they were of no value to the world.

And I realize, their success is all the adornments I need. ( I still love my gems o, so on my next birthday, I do not want to be given any kpangolo):-) Don’t just ‘dash’ youths money without being present or without awareness. Be awakened in consciousness, well-intentioned and most of all ,provide some mentorship when you give. What is money but a mere symbolic means of exchange? It is a form of energy, it is neutral and what you infuse into it is what matters. YOU (and the services you provide), create the real value Exchange.

Give with dignity. Give with empathy. Be very firm and clear on your boundaries. Don’t make it about the photo ops. Make it meaningful and sustainable. I’ve seen a young girl ask for grants to start a business, and when we went through her value contract/hierarchy, we discovered she was spending more than $1000 monthly on hair, bags, clothes, skin care, jewelry…doing shady things she wasn’t proud off.

And yet after some months of mentorship and coaching, and with as little as $3000, she’s running a thriving business, creating magic with her hands and intellect (and has even given back and volunteered her skills to support other girls).

Sometimes, in the absence of guidance (or due to social conditioning and environment), people lose their way or simply develop a skewed sense of priorities. Just as we do too. Let’s learn to be more open and to be there for another; as light houses on our unique journeys. Our insatiable and blind lust for materialism, without any sense of responsibility is creating a society of our nightmare and not of our dreams.

We now live in a world where people budget tens of millions for weddings, burials and 10 years post-death anniversaries of great-grand-parents and yet our children in public schools still sit on the floor, on mats, to (un)learn! The government and leaders are YOU and I.

Since we created the WWN Lifestyle Loan Program – LLP, unfortunately, the only people who’ve ever defaulted on these loans are a few of the so-called ‘elitist’ women. Very well-educated, comfortable and yet, sometimes living a fake lifestyle. And in some cases we realized they used the funds loaned to them for training or business start-up to buy fake designer gear, aso-ebi and clothes for Facebook photo-ops.

And promised, we kept faith with them and we held them accountable. We have created a space for zero tolerance for different types of integrity gaps for members. Self-responsibility and self-accountability are critical prisms of Transformational Leadership.

In these cases, where needed we used legal means and brought them to book. Just because we know how big a difference the monies they refuse to pay can make in another woman’s life. And for most of them, we put them through a financial literacy boot camp to re-align out the off-centred priorities, teach them how to enforce their boundaries and say NO to societal trends, and rather how to co-create their own flow, live within their means, narrow their integrity gaps.

As we wrap up the year, all I can say, on behalf of the WWN team, is “thank you.”
To all our clients, friends, volunteers, mentors, donors, angel investors, mentees…etc., who kept faith and trusted us, we appreciate every single one of you. For some of you it was a bumpy road, but the ride will eventually end well, we give you our word. We are determined to finish up the year with every check mark done right. There are better things and opportunities ahead. It’s one person, one idea, one project at a time.

In the past few months, our team at WWN connected with a couple of spectacular youths across the continent, through face to face meetings, conference calls, video-tele-seminars, whatsapp chat groups….and their FEARLESSNESS, brilliance and ideas simply blow my mind.

They understand the power and magic of UBUNTU! They humbled me. Gave me hope. The upcoming year WILL be wonderful. I know this deep down, because we shall all collaborate to make it so. Beyond the craziness of our so-called ‘leaders’, there’s a new vibrant crop of African youth leaders emerging. Walking their talk. Hungry and in dire need of true role models.

#‎AGratefulHeart‬ They’re few but they’re so bang on, so powerful, and it’s an incredible miracle to watch their ideas take root. In the next few years, you will see their flowers bloom. They challenge me everyday. They teach me everyday. 

Most importantly, I am thankful for YOU, for inviting me into your space and teaching me about the power of BEING, surrendering, no walls, no attachments, just letting myself be who I’ve dreamed of being – a Pilgrim of Love (with all my madness and my flaws…, knowing that I am enough, I am worthy, I am complete and so are you. And I wish you all healing, joy, abundance AND everything wonderful and beautiful and glorious in the new year.

‪#‎LetsRaiseANewgenerationofTECAfricanLeaders‬: Transformational. Ethical. Creative. “We are not inheritors, we are custodians of the Earth.” Continue to dream wonderful dreams y’all and the courage to act, co-create your destiny with God!  ❤ Cyber-hugs

Love, Light & Truth!

Juliet ‘Kego Ume-Onyido

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(You may also find me on my Floetry Blog)
Co-Founder & Executive Director: Whole WoMan Network