THE VOLUNTEER STRIDES OF A SAHARIAN – POWERED BY SAHARA FOUNDATION

August 2, 2019

Lagos, Nigeria

Tell us some things (or a bit) about you (Name, background, interests and how long you have been with Sahara)

I am Abiba Badmus. I joined Sahara in 2010. I am a member of the Asharami Synergy team and have worked in Risk Management & Compliance, Vessel Chartering and Operations unit, and I now manage the QHSSE team.

What’s your motivation for volunteering?

I love to give. I am happiest when I am able to share resources and knowledge, and see improvements to the person(s) or situation. My main motivation is my mother. She is the most selfless person I know, and growing up, I saw how she always put others first, no matter what.

Describe your volunteering experience in July 2019

Volunteering as a judge for the Enactus Nigeria National Competition for the second time was yet again another intriguing experience. Whilst being proud of the amazing talent and excited about the great ideas and prototypes presented by the University undergrads, it was still very evident that Nigeria still has a long way to go in nurturing talent. Some of the teams created solutions that already exist, but they hadn’t even heard about those solutions, so those ideas came from places of genuine innovation. I am hopeful that Nigeria will get to the point where the world will come to us for such innovation and technology. We all have to keep trying our best to support and encouraging idea generation in any way we can.

What contribution or achievement are you most proud?

Every year, I organize a Teenager’s Seminar in my community. The purpose of the seminar is to provide education and guidance for teenagers outside academic learning. Topics discussed range from career advice, drug abuse, moral guidance, social media do’s and don’ts etc. It has been very successful and has seen a tremendous growth in attendance over the years. Last year, I had a 15 year old girl who had chosen to study law. As part of the career talk, we had someone come to enlighten them about the numerous career opportunities in media. The session began by showing them a advert (video) and asking the class to identify all the people involved in creating an advert. It was surprising that most of them only spoke about actors and actresses. By the time they learned about script writing, photography, cinematography etc., this young teenage girl went back to change her course. She said she had wanted to study law because her parents had separated, and she want to use her life to punish people who leave their children – she made a choice because of revenge. But her dream had always been to be on Television. As we speak, she just got admission to study Theatre Arts in Kwara State University. She is so happy. This is one of many testaments to giving. Stories like this keep me doing what I do.

What other organizations or causes do you support or volunteer for?

Quite a number including House of Wisdom Welfare, Khan Foundation, Enactus and of course Sahara Foundation

Do you know about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)? If yes, what do you think of them? – SGD’s  opportunity to make the world a happier place

The Sustainable Development Goals are a set of carefully thought out, intentional goals developed by the United Nations to address pertinent global problems.  Many people in all continents across the world are affected in one way or the other by the identified problems, and the achievement of these goals will make our countries more habitable and improve the quality of life we all desire to have. Bringing this home to Nigeria, I think the goals have provided us with a good working template to strategize and implement what is required to improve the standard of living for citizens. It is a collective effort by all, not just one (the president). In our homes, offices, businesses, groups, families, we have to be deliberate and intentional in ensuring we infuse the goals our daily, decisions, actions, resource utilization and relationships for a better, happier and more successful Nigeria.

What message would you like to share with others about volunteering?

Volunteering DOES NOT take too much time or effort, unlike what people think. Giving  a little, goes a long way. It gives fulfillment, creates opportunity, and makes life better for people who are not as fortunate to have access to resources, knowledge or information as many of us. I encourage you to start with the little drops, and sit back and watch how those drops will become a mighty ocean.