“Schooling doesn’t assure employment but skill does.”Amit Kalantri
ADSI believes that our future, as a region, is the outcome of our action today. This means that we have to be deliberate with the choices we make every day. It is in line with this that the Nasarawa Chapter of our NGO acknowledges an area of intervention that is sacrosanct in our march towards the Arewa of our dreams. No one decides at birth, the conditions and circumstances within which their life would unfold. This is the reason we have the vulnerable and indigent amongst us. It is our moral responsibility, as a society, to be a source of inspiration and support to people within the aforementioned group. Why? If we succeed as a region, our success will last. If we succeed as individuals, our success will be under constant threats.
In Nasarawa, the intervention was aimed at ensuring that we succeed as a region. This was the reason it focused on offering the 65 vulnerable and indigent people that benefitted from the intervention, a series of options in skill acquisition, ranging from fashion and design, masonry, carpentry, solar panel installation, plumbing, vulcanising, to aluminium/metal works, tie/dyeing and Plaster of Paris (POP).
The overarching objective of the intervention is the creation of job opportunities. The beneficiaries of the intervention have become self-reliant. They have been given a crucial empowerment, with which they can decide their own destinies. Imagine what happens when this is sustained over time. Imagine what happens in the next five years, when these skilled individuals must have mastered their trades, and trained at least two persons each. That will be bring the number to almost 200 skilled persons. Imagine what happens if other skills are explored. The future this path creates is crystal clear: in no distant time, the young, indigent or vulnerable in Arewa, will no longer be poor, idle, suffering or readily available tools for crimes.
Dr Zainab Ahmed, Nasarawa State Coordinator of ADSI, who led the Nasarawa team in the success of the intervention, in collaboration with Dr Idris Umar, General Manager, Vocational and Relevant Technology Board, Lafia, have begun a trend that must not end. The 65 trainees were indigent and vulnerable men and women selected without reference to their social, tribal or religious affiliation.
Following the training that stretched across a number of weeks, each beneficiary, in a colourful graduation ceremony, was given a starter’s pack: sewing machines, mason equipment, carpentry equipment, solar electrical equipment, plumbing tools, vulcanising tools, aluminium/metal works tools, tie/dyeing items, and Plaster of Paris (POP) equipment.
While the beneficiaries received these tools and items with resplendent joy, we were once again reminded of the power of atomic habits. Our contribution is pegged at the minimum amount N2000 per month. It is almost nothing to many of us, but that contribution, put together, means that that child without hope may rise up someday to be the saviour of the world. It means that that man who once lived from hand to mouth, can contemplate the possibility of sending their child to school. It means that that woman who was once at the mercy of the eventualities of life, can decide a better life.
Imagine what a simple idea of skilling a region is doing to homes and individuals in the north. It is indeed the north we want. A north in which our shared humanity is more important than the nomenclatures of our differences. A north in which compassion for one another is highly contagious. A north in which our religion is humanity and all the sacrifices that must be made for the betterment of our future. Our collective intervention in Nasarawa has once more brought home the point that we are the little miracles in one another’s life. Let’s keep at it. If you are not already a part of ADSI, then please, do come aboard. We are stronger together. We are greater together. No matter how powerful you are, this life will be damn too boring without that joy that comes from your ability to put a smile on someone’s face. With one more N2000 monthly contribution, we can reach one more Arewan in dire need.