Wednesday, 18 May, 2022

thenewnigerian

NUHU’S CRUSADE


In a world where human sympathy seems like a rare quality and the human heart can become a storehouse of evil deeds, there are those who stand out among the pack. There are those whose acts of benevolence show that there are still humans with a heart of gold.

The New Nigerian online platform located one of such exceptional humans and took a trip into the life of this person. This article takes a peep into the life of a man burdened by challenges, who found a pathway through them, to create a world of sunshine for others.

His story began years ago, when a young man was born on 31st Jan 1971 to a family of a father who joined the Nigerian Police Force as 1st class private and was a commissioner of police, when he retired in 1979.

This young man grew up in Lagos, attended the prestigious Kings College and American College in London, where he studied banking and finance.

His primary school was a government school, derogatorily called Jakande school. Going to the school humbled him, made him streetwise, turning him into a better and stronger person. The school was a leveller because nobody cared about reputation or status. The school shared a fence with Corona School, where children of the wealthy attended and the pupils gazed across the fence at those privileged kids. His experience has shown that a large per cent of the children who went to Jakande schools like Ireti Primary School where he attended are doing better than those who went to the elite schools. When he travelled to the United Kingdom for his university education, he was able to adjust because his stay in a public school had built his orientation and self-esteem and also made him smart.

His love for his country made his return inevitable, and he joined forces with his dad to supply security equipment. Eager for the adventure of starting his own business, this man got involved in foreign exchange transactions and lived on the commissions he earned. He lost a lot of money in the business which did not succeed and he faced a traumatic period when his sister died in a car accident. He took a trip outside Nigeria for a year, to think of his next move.

An encounter with a cab driver gave him ideas for the next step in his career. The cab driver revealed that he was quitting the business of driving a cab and going to work for the Red Cross in Iraq. This patriotic Nigerian thought about the beauty of a life dedicated to serving humanity. He concluded that success in life does not depend on money. Giving back makes people come alive. His initial plan was to wait till he was fifty, to start giving back, but his sister’s death showed the brevity of life and the need to do whatever was to be done, immediately, not waiting for tomorrow.

This man who loved attending parties made a commitment to charity work. Friends who knew of his love for parties did not think he could make a success of the initiative, but he forged ahead. His first initiative was called Food for One Million. Every last Saturday at the Conference Centre Abuja, people would drop foodstuff and the crew who support the initiative would distribute these items to orphanages.

He turned his focus to children who have no access to schools. and got people to donate and adopt a child, to educate. Save A Life was the next project, where children whose parents could not pay health bills were assisted and eighteen children are currently benefitting from the noble gesture.

Challenges like lack of sponsorship for projects came along. He found that wealthy people were reluctant to support, because of abuse of benevolent acts. Some needy parents who were given money to pay for their children’s education squandered it. A woman collected N3Million for her child’s medical care and spent it, leaving the child to die.

Another challenge he encountered in Nigeria was the lack of empathy for the pains of others, which made people refuse to give. In America, a veterinary clinic got burnt and within a short time, over nine hundred thousand dollars was raised to rebuild it he denoted in our podcast with him. He noted that such an overwhelming response is rare in Nigeria. Click this link to listen to the Podcast with the TNN Nuhu Kwajafa

In 2013, a baby born without a skull arrived in a family who lived in Ibadan. They were evicted from their home and depicted as evil, showing a negative side of traditions. This compassionate man brought the family to Abuja, where he lives, and launched fundraising to raise the bill of two hundred and forty-three thousand dollars. Skilled neurosurgeon, Dr Ben Carson, did this surgery and the child and the family now live in the United States.

He has encountered those who do not want to give, even when doctors in the Diaspora volunteered their time and equipment.

The motto of this patriotic Nigerian is, ‘be fair in everything you do.’ He has a disposition that makes him react calmly to situations. He can get upset but does not meditate on the situation that upset him and wakes up fresh every day. He believes in controlling things and not things controlling him. He has a lot of empathy, which aligns with his inner self.

A New Nigerian representative mentioned the story of Chibok Ali who was run over by Boko Haram terrorists when they kidnapped the school girls. Doctors told the boy he would never walk again, but the organisation raised money from some prominent Nigerians and his surgery was done in Dubai. He was walking 72 hours later, because of the benevolent act of the Save a Life initiative.

The man in focus shared testimonies of blessings derived from the charity work he was involved in. He was almost kidnapped by criminal herdsmen while trying to deliver relief materials. He was saved by his T-shirt which had the organisation’s logo. A herdsman who had benefited from the organisation released him. He was saved from death during the Dana Air plane crash when he changed his flight, to take a child to Lagos for surgery.

This benevolent Nigerian called Nuhu Kwajafa, who is on a crusade to make the world a better place, sent a message to Nigerians in Diaspora.

‘My good people, when it comes to collaboration, it’s not all about money. It is about skills. Doctors, medical equipment and even dialysis machines are needed. Everyone can donate. Let’s become the people’s people. Get a million Nigerians to donate N1k a month. This is the drive. Bring others on board. Let’s be our brothers’ keeper.’

 

Mr Kwajafa presented to The New Nigerian crew, one of his benevolent projects, called The Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care and provided details of it.

INTRODUCTION – The Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care (GIPLC) is a non-governmental, nonfaith based, not for profit organization in Nigeria, with its headquarters in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, with branches in Nassarawa State and Benue State. It seeks to stimulate sustainable and participatory community charity projects which cater for vulnerable women and children of Nigeria, and the world in general.

It was founded in 2006 and has raised over five million dollars and executed remarkably effective charity projects, both locally and internationally, receiving recognition from the government of Nigeria and some of its private and public sectors. The organization is viewed as an NGO with exemplary visibility, integrity and prudence in touching and changing lives.

THEIR VISION – To create a society where children will survive, grow and develop under the care of healthy and fulfilled mothers.

THEIR MISSION – To promote sustainable programs and activities that will ensure a better life for vulnerable women and children.

THEIR AIMS AND OBJECTIVES

  • To stimulate active participation in the care and support of women and orphaned and vulnerable children.
  • To promote the establishment of community-based early childhood care centres.
  • To ensure effective implementation of the Child’s Right Act of 2003.
  • To encourage participatory resources, sustainable community resources and mobilization strategies for the care and support of women, orphaned and vulnerable children.
  • To strengthen the capacity of households and communities to respond to the needs of orphaned and vulnerable children.

RECURRENT PROJECTS – FOOD FOR ONE MILLION – In over a decade of existence, this program which occurs on the last Saturday of every month, at the Peace Park Area 8, Garki, Abuja, has helped to distribute lots of food items, toiletries, toys, clothes and other essential items, to over twenty-three orphanages and communities that registered with the organization.

SAVE A CHILD – Through our collective responsibility initiative, tapping on our broad network of stakeholders and their contacts, this health-focused program has raised well over five million dollars for children with critical medical conditions. Worthy of note is Okikijesu Olawuyi, a three-year-old girl who had a congenital cranial deficiency. Over two hundred and forty-three thousand dollars was raised for her surgery. Other beneficiaries of the initiative are vulnerable children with heart conditions, kidney problems, domestic abuse and accident victims, those with tumours, various types of growth, those who need prosthetic limbs and many more.

Some before and after photos of their works

PUTTING THE HEALTH OF CHILDREN FIRST

PUBLIC HEALTH CAMPAIGNS – In line with ensuring that vulnerable children have equal chances of survival, growth and development, the organization has organized public health campaigns by administering deworming medication to over fifty-thousand children in rural communities across various states of Nigeria. Up to four thousand nursing and expectant mothers also benefitted from on-the-spot antenatal consultations, while over five thousand insecticide-treated nets were distributed to various households and orphanages.

CHILD EDUCATION SUPPORT – In an earnest effort to meet the millennium development goals for the education for all initiative and attaining the government’s universal basic education drive, we have established thirty early childcare and primary school libraries, across the communities where we work. We have paid the tuition of N875, 000.00 per session, for over three thousand children attending public primary schools, in mostly rural and suburban communities. This initiative is to ensure that every vulnerable child (below 9 years), has access to early childhood education and development.

To ensure a better learning experience, we have provided vulnerable children with over 2,500 double desks at schools, up to 500 walking canes for blind students and 600 wheelchairs for physically challenged children. We have mobilized other learning materials (distributed periodically), to ensure the seamless integration of these disadvantaged children into primary schools. The organization has provided education in emergencies. Mu, a community in Benue state, was ravaged by flood, and we set up temporary housing facilities and sent ad hoc teachers to teach the children of the community.

WATER & ENVIRONMENTAL SANITATION – Through collaborations with water-focused organizations, we have provided ten boreholes and six wells in some communities and orphanages. We have conducted environmental sanitation exercises, in conjunction with the host communities and some orphanages, to raise awareness and sensitize the public on the need to preserve our planet. There is an ongoing tree-planting campaign, with a target to plant up to one hundred thousand high yield economic trees, within the next five years in various parts of Nigeria.

NIGERIA @ 50 – To commemorate the celebrations of Nigeria’s 50th anniversary, we collaborated with some surgeons from the United States of America who came to Nigeria and conducted free fibroid surgeries on over one thousand women across the country.

CRISIS & CONFLICT MANAGEMENT – The organization set up a crisis response team, to bring solace to victims who have been displaced due to terrorist activities in Nigeria. These brave staff and volunteers have visited conflict and crisis zones, like the women and children attacked by unknown assailants at Dogo Nahawa in Plateau State, the flooded parts of Benue, Kogi and Delta states, and internally displaced persons’ camps.

We have been providing the ever-growing internally displaced people’s camps with essential relief items to stabilize them, before they are relocated. Supplies worth millions of naira have been mobilized from churches and the general public for many of these camps. The crew of the organization visited The Republic of South Sudan during the peak of their ongoing internal conflict. They visited other camps and distributed some materials in collaboration with Concern for Women & Children, the pet project of South Sudan’s first lady. After conducting a needs assessment, and carrying out a baseline survey, preparations for a fund-raising event, tagged Save the Children of South Sudan, were in progress, to be held in Abuja, Nigeria, to be graced by the first lady of South Sudan. However, some unforeseen circumstances led to an indefinite postponement of the event.

SPORTS AND RECREATION – To raise awareness on the need to include children who often fall through the gaps of child development, soccer tournaments between orphanages and stakeholders/supporters (corporate tournaments) are organized and publicized for active participation.

The current champion of the annual Orphaned and Vulnerable Children Exchange is the City of Refuge Orphanage, Abuja team, sponsored by Access Bank Enterprise Support Group. Annually, we host an end-of-year party for over 2000 vulnerable children, to encourage socio-cultural integration and ensure more exposure for this most vulnerable section of society.

RECOGNITION AND AWARDS The Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care has been recognized for its formidable humanitarian projects and has received various awards which include, Abuja Young Entrepreneurs Award in 2012, Abuja Young Entrepreneurs Award in 2013, Abuja Grand Award for Charity in 2013 and Rotary Club of Asokoro Award in 2014.

In 2015, Nuhu Kwajafa, founder and chief executive officer of The Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care delivered a speech at the Martin Luther King anniversary celebration in Washington DC and also received an Award for Excellence from KBK Foundation. In 2015, he also delivered a speech during a cancer research anniversary event in the United Kingdom.

With over a decade-long experience in the humanitarian sector, Nuhu has brought a lifetime commitment to charity work with a focus on vulnerable women and children, to bear on the NGO. With years of contact with leaders of nations, top-ranking diplomats and prominent people at the highest levels of government worldwide, Nuhu remains an invaluable driver of the GIPLC vision and mission, for which he has received many awards, and still counting.

The Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care consists of a board of directors, national coordinator for projects manager, admin manager, secretary, volunteers, information technology supervisor, pro-director, special projects manager for field operations, two zonal coordinators for South East, South-South, South West, North Central, North East and North West and volunteers for states like Rivers State, Nassarawa State, Adamawa State, Kano State, Enugu State and Lagos State

On its board of directors are men and women of impeccable integrity and commitment to charity work. Their oversight control of the NGO ensures that it remains focused and law-abiding, while their diverse contacts help tackle potential bureaucratic bottlenecks, to hasten any due process related to any charity work in progress.

The Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care has developed an excellent synergy between its projects, administrative and field operations managers, and together they form an indomitable senior team that gets things done in record time, regardless of where the humanitarian challenge may be. With a competent information technology supervisor and volunteer workers, engaged on a need-to basis, the GIPLC team remains a goal and result-oriented outfit gradually carving its niche in Nigeria, and globally.

On Sunday, 10th May 2020, GIPLC project ONE Nigerian, ONE Mask continued its campaign by supporting over four hundred vulnerable women and children with palliatives and face masks at Kpaduma Village, Asokoro Extension in Abuja. The turnout showed that there are many needy people around us. We did our best to maintain social distancing in spite of the overwhelming crowd. In total, six hundred masks have been distributed.

A string of laudable initiatives, if you ask me.

Mr Nuhu’s crusade continues. He still searches for that man, woman and child who is vulnerable and in need of essential items to live a normal life. He still holds on to the dream, despite challenges encountered. He still searches for those who will walk hand-in-hand with him, to ensure that people live their best life.

Nuhu’s Crusade has helped so many and still stays strong, to create a better world for all.

Click this link to listen to the Podcast with the TNN Nuhu Kwajafa

From 30th June 2021 to 3rd July 2021, GIPLC has given out N4.1m to children for various surgeries as follows:

30/06/2021: 500k

30/06/2021: 250k

01/07/2021: N2m

01/07/2021: 350k

03/07/2021: N1m

Total N4.1m

To God be the glory

A subtle testimony from a very happy family courtesy of GIPLC

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