My pledge to Nigeria still remains the same even though a lot of us do not see it as one, for every time we recited it right from primary school to secondary up to the university level and now to serving our country “Nigeria”. Being part of the most blessed batch of all batches, 11C resuming on the 15/11/12 with little or no interest, bailing out of camp based on health issues and not minding what I will miss, the mammy market everyone looked forward to wasn’t catching my fancy, after spending two nights in camp, no shower, no wee, I made up my mind to find my way back to my abode. I’m no butty nor tush, I grew up in Mushin and Orile respectively and now live in the razz part of Lagos Island. I just couldn’t cope with our poor Nigerian system anymore. Lagos camp has been longed tagged the best ever ( well in terms of fun and opportunities) unfortunately for me, I missed out on most if not all. I for once have never been interested in the so-called NYSC; I thought it was a waste of time.
My staying out of camp gave my friends and colleagues reasons to think I had job waiting, but Alas! NO! I used these time to surf the internet looking for one even though I wasn’t exactly ready to work for anyone, I’m a fashion designer M’ADE. Why should I waste a year serving a country that never pays back? But that changed when I was offered one with a reasonable “corper pay”. Leaving where I was initially posted to teach biology and math in a School in Bariga after one week of bonding with the kids left guilt in my heart. I couldn’t forgive myself for weeks.
Then came the strike – OCCUPY NAIJA, I kept thinking “if I don’t who will? If not now, when?” Most of the protesters were heard and listened to because they went to school and acquired knowledge. I then thought, NYSC can’t be a total waste, been posted to Lagos should be the greatest opportunity for anyone, I might be earning more than 75% of Lagos corps members and less than 10% of Lagos corps members but this ratio is enough to get me on my heels and do something rewarding.
I Started with Wednesday free teaching programme at my old PPA and few schools around. The student knew me to be a proud fashion designer and making them understand the state of our country and how important it is to be self empowered was my priority. In June, a couple of friends passed out, it was a wake up call, many made no impact, some did and very few were recognised. I like to be important and valued, it is my speciality and I do not see any wrong in that, it had always been my driving force. I wanted to be important, to be make impact and to reflect on my theory of OCCUPY NAIJA. The time was now, I took up a project (I’M MADE) in conjunction with 10 other Nigerian youths and ambassadors to train 35 students in 5 vocational courses, to visit homes under the (care 4 all project) to share experiences and let the young know they still have hope in Nigeria. Today, I am dropping my old,tight and only khaki knowing fully well that I have served my country and I am sure those 35students will serve 35 each more and the trend will continue and even when I pick a white collar job or get on my sewing machine creating ideas and designs more empowered youths will be created alongside.

Am i fulfilled? YES! Am i happy? YES! Am i grateful? YES! Am a lot of things including proud of everyone around me, everyone that always appreciated me, everyone that helps me get lucky, everyone that will do anything to make my plans become project. I can’t mention names anymore because you all know yourselves.

I thank the Lagos State Govt and the whole of NYSC crew for appreciating me and awarding me as outstanding productive corps member. The Lagos State Honours Award, means so much to me.

Don’t be quick to think Lagos is the happening place. In fact, if it is Zamfara it’s a place to give a hand to peace, new knowledge and also learn craft, Kwara state is the best place for practising agriculture; you don’t have to hold hoes or cutlasses, you can be opportunistic about it, my Ibadan corps members knew what was right “business”, just think of something you can passionately sell, A friend of my does delivery business in Ebonyi and Uyo back and forth and now has a certification on that, East- west, North- south of Nigeria is full of great opportunities, it just requires creative minds and ideology. We can find more than we can wait to get, just talk to me and many through @MADE_creations with #MADE/#MADE creations, lets create more opportunities for ourselves even though the government aren’t ready to make it easy.
GOOD TO GO … NOW YOUR STRUGGLE SURVIVAL CONTINUES

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