I Met A Girl at a Bus Station

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While waiting to board the bus en route to my destination (Calabar) on an official assignment this young lady, Amara(not real name) who sat beside me suddenly sighed out loud. Unknowingly she voiced out her thoughts, “How long will I continue to do this”, she mumbled. I was sited beside her and since we had been chatting earlier on about life in general, I took the liberty to ask her what the matter was in a concerned tone. Amara said she wish a man would come and whisk her off in marriage. She was tired of selling in a shop at the bus station. Enquiring further about how long she had been there, Amara said 7 years.

It has been 7 long years for her working at her uncle’s wife’s shop without getting paid. Amara was simply tired of this life that made her future look bleak. In her mind’s eye, the ticket to her freedom was getting married. Her hope is to have a man set her up for a business. I listened to her talk about her life and frustration then I gently told her that marriage is not the answer to the kind of freedom she dreamed of.

I shared with her the importance of having a job or some kind of trade of her own. Something to empower and give her financial freedom. Our discussions further revealed that she had finished her secondary school education and also has acquired skills in fashion designing(sewing clothes). I then encouraged her to pursue this business while waiting for the right man to come. It seemed to me that she had no choice but to live with her uncle’ wife who by the way had died. The widow housing her is probably doing her best to feed and cloth Amara including her own children.

After my attempt to inspire Amara to pursue her dreams she had this to say”Some girls are lucky; they get married and their husband sets them up in a business. Why can’t my own be like that?”. I kept quiet and thought to myself … “you may never understand the reality of her world”. Soon Amara stood up trying to chat with some men and bus drivers who work at the station. As I boarded my bus on the way to my destination, I hoped that things will turn out well for Amara; I hoped that she will not fall into the hands of men who will take advantage of her.

I wished that I lived in her town to possibly still keep in touch and help link her to opportunities and resources but all I had were my few words of counsel. Many young girls are out there just hoping for a brighter future like Amara. Perhaps if she had a higher education maybe her life might be easier in getting a paying job.

A lot of girls out there who come from a humble and economically struggling background as I have observed believe that finding a husband who will provide for them is the answer to their financial troubles. Maybe a few girls get lucky but often these girls find themselves in tougher situations when the man cannot provide as they had hoped.

We need to educate our girls/women; we need to empower them. It starts with each family, don’t just allow your girl/daughter to only sell for you in your shop, ensure that she is truly empowered for the future. Marrying her off is not the answer to your economic and financial problems. You may soon have to care for her and her babies if the man is irresponsible. This will become a big burden. You can also share this wisdom with people who think like this as they come your way in the marketplace, bus station, taxi or wherever.

Educate a Girl, Give her a better future
To empower a woman is to empower a family and nation.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

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Tips to Kick Start Your Week #2 – Mundane Monday

#Humour
This is what we got for breakfast at a workshop. 

Yeah trust my fellow Nigerian clan… Meat pie, fish roll and one meat plus a cup of tea is an appetizer! 😀😀.

Correct breakfast is a full plate of beans and plantain and for some a big bowl of eba or fufu… 😂😂 will suffice for the whole day. 

So here we were at the workshop praying that lunch time will come quickly as our stomachs rumbled.

Welcome to a brand new week. It is a  week filled with new possibilities.

What you need do to have a successful week.

  • Be optimistic,
  • write a few points on things you want to achieve
  • Go for it

While you are reeving “your engine” and charging up to run this week’s race remember…

  • Remember to take a good breakfast before setting out in the morning.
  • Remember to take a break in between your tasks for the day.
  • Remember to rest and sleep well at night.
  • Remember to take care of yourself as well as you do with work.

It is not what you are going to do that matters but what you are doing now – Napoleon Hill 

Enjoy your week!
Adebisi Adetunji (C) BusyBee Media for Social Change and Development. 

 

You Don’t Always Have Your Life Figured Out #Encouragement

Do you always have things together in your life? I mean are you always on point? Are you clear about what you should be doing next? Do you know where you want to be next? Are you ready to do something really great and profound? Do you want to save the world?

Hahaha… You only need to save the next person to you and the world will be just fine. 😀😀

Personal Lessons :

I am learning to take one day at a time, so should you.
I am learning that the little things I do for myself, family, friends and even strangers matter.

You have got to be grateful for what you have and where you are before you can appreciate the next level 

Today I am grateful for the gift of life, for when I am alive I can dream on and achieve.
Today I am grateful for a good health for I could have been paying a lot of hospital bills that I don’t even have money for.

Little Acts
I am grateful for the opportunity to visit a sick loved one in the hospital and just be there for them.
I am grateful for the opportunity to write this post and basically been able to write something that others stop by to read.

My life is still loading…
I am looking forward to doing great things and been a person of positive influence.

So my encouragement to you… Your life is still loading too…it doesn’t matter how old you are,  there is much more to your life. 

You don’t always have to have it together. Do what you can and watch things unfold.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

An Overwhelming Help! Girl gets School Fees Support – You never Know What Your Story Can Birth!!

When I shared this post, “The Sight of a Hardworking Woman & Mother: How tough can it Get?” little did I know that it will culminate into getting double help and support for this woman and her daughter. I was simply just doing a post about how some women struggle really hard to make ends meet in their family. If you are a blogger or writer like me reading this, follow that instinct and just share your heart about whatever catches your attention, you never know when you make a huge difference.

So here is what transpired after I published that story:

I got a message from a dear friend living across the globe from where I live that she read the story I shared. She wanted to know how she could donate towards part payment of the little girl’s school fees. When I read her message I was shocked and surprised! Yes, because I wasn’t expecting anything to come in terms of assistance from the story apart from what I had donated to help support the school fees of the little daughter of the woman in question. Mostly I avoided even mentioning that until now and I also didn’t want to ask anyone to donate. So here I am finding out that, that brainwave I gave into in publishing her story was the key to making a huge difference in this woman and her little girl’s life.

In the end the money donated covered for a whole school year’s fees for the little girl, meanwhile, her mother was only working hard to get just a term’s school fees.

 God is awesome and knows how to show up for us when we are in need!

I feel humbled and privileged to be a part of the answer to this woman’s cry for help. Sincerely I am still in shock and just moved in a way that words cannot express.

You never know who your story can help, keep writing honestly and sincerely from your heart.

Apart from settling the little girl’s school fees, the donation also covered the school fees for a young visually impaired boy whom I and My Abiye (maternal & child health) team had been giving education support for some years now. Indeed it is a double help and support for these two vulnerable children.

God bless our donor mightly. I cannot mention her name as I believe she wants this giving to be discrete.

Every Boy, every Girl deserves an education.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

The Sight of a Hardworking Woman & Mother: How tough can it Get?

Femininematerz photo

This morning I got to the office and saw the little daughter of one of our cleaners. I asked her mum why she wasn’t in school and the whole gist centered around inability to pay the girl’s school fees for now.

I was kind of troubled by this news. Then I inquired about her husband and what he was doing about getting their daughter’s school fees paid. She said he had lost his job and the family was barely managing to survive on her cleaning meager salary for now. She was waiting to get paid so a part payment of the school fees can be made while they live on the rest. You can imagine how much her salary amounts to, not much.

While also chatting with her I found out she had also gotten a loan to enroll her oldest child in tertiary institution. So here is this hardworking woman and mother in between paying back a loan and fending for her family as best as she can.

I was really touched and want to appreciate every hardworking woman supporting their families as best as they can.

It is also heartwarming to see that this woman wants her children to get an education and have a better life than she had.

Encourage hardworking women around you and help support in your own little way.

Don’t mind your business, care enough to ask people how they are doing, you would be surprised at how that can help. It is an opportunity to show kindness and lend a hand. 

Have a great and blessed day☺️☺️

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Sunday Inspiration : That time When getting Admitted into School was Difficult for Me – Your Struggles & Pain Will Work out For Good

Just me looking back and grateful
A house my family & I lived in for many years in Kano.

Today when I look back I am amazed at how things turned out for me in terms of getting an education.

By the way I went to a public school and back then you could get quality education unlike nowadays that parents enrolled their children in private schools and pay so much simply because the standard at our public schools have really fallen. Now back to my own story.

In primary five students start to write entrance exams to get into secondary/high school. So by the time you get into your final class you already had a number of schools to choose from judging by the number of admission letters you have in your hand. My parents wanted me to go to a particular popular school for girls in Kano. The girls who attended that school were brilliant and stood out. I wrote the exams and was one of the lucky ones selected. I was excited but alas one day at my head teachers office I found out that my place had been given to another girl. I was terribly disappointed. Since I didn’t write another school’s exam I had to wait a while and struggled to get into another secondary school. I ended up at a school somewhere in Borno state still in the North. I spent only one session in that school as I couldn’t cope with the life there. It was tough and rugged and the school was in the middle of nowhere out of town and in the bush.

Finally I was rescued and taken to Jos, Plateau state and my first school was Naraguta grammar school… Not the standard my dad wanted. I was always coming first and my dad felt there wasn’t enough competition for me😀
But most importantly it was there that I understood what it meant to know God in a personal way. Jesus found me and I came to know him in a very special way. Funny how the Lord leads our path.

After that school I went to Baptist High school in Jos still and it was a marvelous time been taught by teachers like Mr Stone, Miss Gaines- I really still do miss her Bible lessons because it was full of stories, real life issues. Quickly the years went by and I was preparing to get into the university/college. I thought it would be easy but I was in for a bumpy ride and long journey. First I failed my physics and chemistry subjects. You see I was a science student and had the intention of becoming a doctor… Hmmmn the dream of every parent back then as it was a prestigious profession.

I wrote WAEC like four times and all my private lesson teacher’s coaching still didn’t help me to pass my science subjects. I remember going to a center to check my third WAEC result. As I looked through my list and saw that I failed my physics, chemistry and biology again I made up my mind that enough was enough. It was then that I made a u-turn and decided to register for art subjects. This time around I passed them seamlessly. It became clear that I wasn’t cut out for the medical line and I told my dad so.

It is important to study your child’s strength and guide him/her  in the right direction.

Somewhere in between all of these I still enrolled for a pre-degree course at the University of Jos with the intention of doing one of the science courses. You can guess what happened : I failed badly wasting another two years. At last I decided to seek admission to study law at the University of Jos. It was another struggle, they just wouldn’t admit me for so many reasons. All the while I was praying hard that God will show up for me. In fact I wondered why it had to be a struggle to move to each stage of my education.

For my thoughts are not your thoughts neither are my ways your ways.

God had a better plan and through all my delay and struggle He was working things out. His good plans for my life were unfolding. Everything I experienced and everywhere I had been were all part of the plan and necessary to make become the person I am today.

We may not understand why we have to go through things sometimes but God always has a better plan for his children.

Finally without struggle I got an admission into Bayero University Kano and I didn’t even want to go there because that was were I grew up and for other reasons. I got to study the course English and specialized in literature. One of the reasons Iit had to be that school was clear to me years later… It was there I met my husband 😀

Today I have a masters in Social Work and I look back still amazed at how the Lord brought me around in full circle.

You may seem delayed God is working.
Your good and bad experiences will all work out for your good.

We don’t need to understand all the plans but we can trust him and He does really know what he is doing… Beautifying your life.

I don’t know your struggles and I know it can be hard, I am here to say have faith; fear not, it will all work out for your good.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Tuesday Musing: Stop Neglecting Yourself ;Take Care of You

It is easy to fix everything and everyone but yourself.

Remember to take time to relax.
Watch that fatigue; that tired and exhausting feeling.
Stop eating junk because you are too busy trying to meet deadlines.
If you break down life doesn’t stop because of you. So stop and take care of yourself.

How to take care of yourself

  • Eat right
  • Delegate duties/assignments
  • Go play golf, tennis or watch a movie if you like the work load can wait.
  • Rest and yes sleep is good and necessary to be able to perform optimally at your tasks.
  • CEO time to take a break; your company will not crash before you get back.
  • Spend quality fun time with family, friends and loved ones.

Build meaningful relationships now because that is all that will be important a few years from now.  

People slum and die often this days don’t add to the statistics.

Take care of yourself. 😀😀

Adebisi Adetunji (C)