Q: Tell us about yourself (Name, background, interests and how long you have been with Sahara)
My name is Ifeoma and I’m a proud Igbo girl from Abia state. My top 3 passions are music, literature and travel (currently trying to make it to 30 countries before I turn 30). I’ve been with Sahara for a little over 3 years and currently work in the Corporate Performance Management Unit at Ikeja Electric.
Q: What is your motivation for volunteering?
My motivation has always stemmed from my desire to see an improvement in people’s livelihood and be part of creating a cycle that allows me to make a positive impact in someone’s life that equally empowers them to do the same for others. I’ve also found that volunteering has contributed positively to my personal growth. It has improved my social and organizational skills and enhanced other important qualities such as empathy and compassion.
Q: Describe your volunteering experience with the Sahara Foundation?
It is always a pleasure working with people who are passionate about changing lives and making a difference. The best thing about working with the foundation is the diversity of initiatives and projects that we get involved with and the many beneficiaries of these different programs. It’s amazing to see how wide the reach is and if I were to describe my experience with one word, it’ll be “fulfilling”.
Q: What contribution or achievement are you most proud?
Recently, I was part of the Sahara Steamers program where I led a vision boarding session with some students of Oshodi Junior High School. I’d been assigned to an all-girls group and hearing them talk about what they wanted to be and bringing those visions to life was massively inspiring. It’s important for children to be empowered from an early age. Particularly the girl child. They must know that they can aspire to be Presidents and Scientists and Engineers and Astronauts. Seeing all these visions come to life and the realization that there is no limit to what they can achieve made me incredibly proud.
Q: What other organizations or causes do you support or volunteer for?
I support and volunteer for the Ahuoma Anyaso Educational Foundation in my hometown. They focus on providing free quality education to the children in the local communities and every year, we engage in an initiative to distribute food and provide back to school items (backpacks, books, pencils, etc. ) to over 5000 children.
Q: Do you know about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)? If yes, what do you think of them?
Yes I do – all 17 of them. The SDG’s are geared towards fostering inclusion and ensuring a better quality of life for present and future generations. I think it is an honourable cause and we should all do whatever we can to bring us closer to attaining those goals, whether this is by raising awareness about it or being more conscious of our environmental choices. Everyone has a part to play, individuals and multinationals alike.
Q: What do you think about Sahara Foundations new focus areas (Access to Clean Energy and Promoting Sustainable Environment)?
It is extremely important because not only does it speak directly to SDG7, it is also fundamental to achieving many of the other sustainable development goals. There is a common saying that “charity begins at home”; with Nigeria having an energy deficit of 45% this presents a fitting opportunity for Sahara Foundation to make a difference, starting from its own backyard.
Q: What message would you like to share with others about volunteering?
I’d like to share a quote by Oscar Wilde “ the smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention”
Essentially, armchair activism isn’t enough. It doesn’t matter how big our intentions are to do good if we don’t act on it. We need to be willing to dedicate our time and contribute to improving our communities and making a tangible difference no matter how small.
Q: Kindly share your social media handles (Instagram and LinkedIn)
LinkedIn: Ifeoma Ekeoma