As the year comes to an end, these 5 people are worthy of note as our Everyday Heroes. (Note: this list is in no order of importance or significance).
Abisoye stood out remarkably as one of CNN’s 10 Heroes of 2018. Born Abisoye Abosede Ajayi, on 19th May 1985, in Akure, Ondo state, Nigeria. Abisoye Ajayi-Akinfolarin is a Nigerian women’s rights activist and the founder of Pearls Africa Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organization and a social enterprise that focuses on promoting the cause of vulnerable young girls, by utilizing technology, entrepreneurship, skill acquisition and internship placements. She has enacted projects such as GirlsCoding that teaches young girls computer programming and coding, as well as other initiatives like the ‘Hope Basket’ and ‘Break the Blade’ projects.
Given that she has realized the huge gender gap in the tech-industry of Nigeria, She hopes to minimize that gap by engaging and motivating young girls in that field. Ajayi-Akinfolarin drive’s is to help less privileged girls to realize that “regardless of where they are coming from, they can make it.”
Bangoji, Jason Bido
Born 16th July 1984, Jason Bangoji, is from Kaduna state, Nigeria, and resides there as well. He is the point-man for the KOSE Republic; an initiative geared at empowering every struggling woman engaged in a small business. KOSE, though a Northern word for Bean-cake or Akara, is actually a different word in the KOSE Republic. It is an acronym for ‘Kind Open and Selfless Expressions’. Jason believes that in supporting this target group, the family and society at large is supported. The kose initiative intends to deliver a simple message; of love and hope; to inspire and encourage; to engage and motivate people to think of enhancing the lives of the common man and woman in their environment. This Kose initiative serves as a binding force between religions and ethnic groups, which is commendable especially when you consider how polarized some parts of the country are based on religion and ethnicity.
Jason achieves this by mobilizing his friends and other well-wishers to come partake of this act on a stipulated date. Jason and his group of friends/well-wishers donate food items and cash to the target population.
His name could be rewritten as Joe ‘Superman’ Blankson. Superman because of his heroics; single handedly rescuing 13 people from a capsized boat, conveying 25 passengers along the Abonnema-Bakama waterways in Degema, Rivers State. Blankson, who was a father of two, and a diesel supplier unfortunately died while attempting to rescue the 14th person. Suggestion were that he died as a result of exhaustion from the multiple trips he made, in and out of the river in his rescue mission. This led to his drowning. His body was recovered 24 hours after he drowned.
Doctors without Borders
The Doctors without Borders (originally and also called Medecins Sans Frontieres –MSF), was established in 1971 in Paris. Operating as a self-governed humanitarian medical non-profit organization, it is known for its numerous projects in conflict zones and countries affected by Endemic diseases. Their commitment has been to bring quality medical care to people caught in crises areas, regardless of race, religion or political affiliation. They have participated hugely in treating victims of the Civil war as well as more recently, victims of the Boko Haram conflict in Northern Nigeria. In addition to medical treatment, the organization also provides mental health support, nutritional programs and distribution of food, vaccinations, sanitization of water facilities and conducting campaigns against rape.
In 2016 alone, the expenditure for this foundation was €39.3 million. The amazing fact is that up to 90% of the organization’s funding comes from private donations, with the remaining 10% provided by corporate organizations. This implies that this organization does not rely on any governmental support to carry out its activities.
A young girl of 15 years has redefined ‘Beyond belief to convictions’. After being abducted from school, in a group alongside other girls, she has been denied freedom because of her conviction and allegiance to her professed faith. Her resilient spirit and tenacity of faith; her stance and deep convictions has been inspiring. The narrative as well as the timeless lessons to be drawn from Leah’s life are numerous. Few of these include the fact that she reveals to us a will that cannot be overpowered by coercion or violations, she proves that some can only destroy or punish the body but not the soul, that oppression and suppression cannot defeat an insurmountable spirit that is laced with belief and convictions in her faith.
Leah’s actions though in captivity have been speaking louder than words, her convictions have cut deeper than swords. She exemplifies martyrdom while alive: having a faith worth living for, as well as worth dying for. And while the Nation and the world still awaits her release, she has without any doubt commanded attention to be regarded as a Hero; if not for anything, a Hero of faith.
So there you have it, 5 Everyday Heroes for the year 2018. Please, feel free to comment and mention any notable hero that should have made this list also.
Featured Image Source: In Medic Pain