By Esther Adeyanju
Action aid Nigeria held its 2015 edition of Activista organising for change campaign, in Akure, Ondo state in a bid to build young people’s capacity to organise and take independent actions for the purpose of driving change in their communities.
The Activista organising for change camp is a yearly camp where young people from different parts of Nigeria regardless of tribe, religion or political affiliation are brought together under the Activista platform to build their capacity to organise for the purpose of driving change at community levels.
A staff of Action aid and Activista spokesperson, Kenny Oleru, said the organizing for change camp is one of Activista’s youth development and mobilisation initiatives, “the camp is organised to help raise the political consciousness of young people and empower them to mobilise independently at state level. It is where young people are encouraged and empowered to fulfil their potentials at early stage towards driving change in their communities.”
Action aid, as people oriented organisation, has young people at the heart of her programming and strategically created the Activista platform as a space where young people’s potentials are honed and brought to the fore.”
Participants were lectured on tax justice, safe city, food and agriculture and education rights. Task were given to participants in relating the above to current issues in their communities and presentations made by them.
A participant from Kaduna state, Gladys Ohaba who joined Activista during a campaign of sending physically challenged and displaced children back to school, said, “I have learnt so much, on tax payments, tax laws and justice. I have been empowered on ways I could drive a change in my community by pointing out issues that needs to be addressed.”
Simon Aluechia from Benue state said “I can now contribute my quota and participate in projects to help develop my community and also raise government’s attention to issues that needs to be addressed in my community. Activista has helped me to affect lives in my own little way.”
Another Participant from Abuja, Miriam Daniel said the training has been educative, interacting and inspiring. “It is an eye opener for me. It has opened my mind to think on how to help my society and enlighten people on their rights and responsibilities.”
Johnson Otoye from Ondo state said the training has empowered him to drive a change in his community. “I have mapped out issues along with fellow activistas in my state on our plans for the next months in helping men, women and children in Benue state. Women need to be respected and adored and as such, a safe environment should be created for them.”
A participant, Shehu Sulaimon from Gombe said, “I look forward to driving a change in my community. Thanks to Action aid.”