A Non Governmental Organization, U-Save Foundation has called on young Nigerians to imbibe the spirit of volunteering for a better society.
The Country Director of the Foundation, Mrs Uju Anwukah gave the advice at the Annual Volunteer Seminar of U-Save, in Abuja.
Mrs Anwukah said that the organization aims to build, nurture and establish the spirit of volunteerism among youths in Nigeria.
She said the foundation was focused on the sixth Sustainable Development Goals of improving Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, WASH.
She noted that the volunteers of the foundation go into the hard to reach areas to carry out awareness about WASH without asking for anything in return.
“U-Save Foundation envisions a society where there is equitable access to safe drinking water to vulnerable communities and also improving hygiene and sanitation in those communities. Our driving force at U-Save are our Volunteers. These are people who go into the hard to reach areas without asking for anything in return. We operate in several communities in the FCT and Niger state. True volunteerism is something that is beginning to be built in Nigeria” Anwukah said.
According to her, the foundation has worked with some volunteers that have been volunteering with their hearts without expecting anything back because it gives them joy to put a smile on people’s faces.
“We also have those that expect things in return like transport and the likes, Volunteers particularly at U-Save come out without expecting anything back in return,” she said
On insecurity, the country director said that ” a lot of our volunteers complain about going into those hard to reach areas due to insecurity issues, we hope this narrative changes so more youth can rise up and give back to their communities. To be a Volunteer, you have to have the passion and kindness, one person cannot exist themselves, it takes a community. The more I help out communities, the more purpose I find”.
Quick Money Syndromee
She advised the younger generation to shun the quick money syndrome as it was not the way to go.
“It’s something you attain now and lose very quickly, when you give to others you feel more blessed and fulfilled. Volunteerism has a major role to play in the issue of mental health, when you give back to the society that eliminates mental health and its thoughts in ourselves,” Anwukah added.
In her presentation, Impact of WASH in Nigeria: Volunteer as a Driving Force, Chidom Adimorah of UNICEF Nigeria, says the sanitation situation in Nigeria was really appalling.
She said that the statistics in Nigeria was still high and has led to death from diseases.
“Wash affects education in many parts of Nigeria due to poor wash services. Some parents do not send their girl children to schools due to poor WASH or lack of toilets”. Adimorah said.
End Open Defecation
She pointed out that Nigeria was in a state of emergency to end open defecation by 2030.
She added that UNICEF also works with volunteers to get all stakeholders involved in the promotion of WASH interventions.
One of the keynote speakers, Martha Eginiwin, said that through volunteering, more youths can get busy and avoid societal vices.
She noted that volunteerism does not pay bills immediately but can position volunteers for opportunities.
She encouraged unemployed youths to take up volunteering while waiting for white collar jobs.
The U-Save Foundation annual seminar provided an opportunity for volunteers to interact, network and learn about their role and function in society.
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