To Serve Our Fatherland

It was a very warm Thursday evening when we arrived at the Ilaje camp house to begin the service index1project. The house was dusty and needed to be cleaned, so this was our first task. We were itching to have music accompany the cleaning but unfortunately, there was no power…but in the end we made up for the lack of music with making up some very funny songs of our own.

A talk on the basic rules and order of conduct expected was given by Ijeoma, highlighting also the impact of the service project to us as young people and the impact of the change the society will enjoy from our efforts. We were to spend the next two days setting up a make shift classroom and giving tutorials to secondary school students from Ilaje.

Peju telling us about the students of Ilaje
Cleaning up the classroom areas








Maryann said:

Well, the whole experience was work-full and fun filled – the cooking, washing and fetching water experience was exciting too, although the waking up time was a huge struggle. Also seeing the site and the make-shift tents were a spur to me, in the sense that I felt it was really great being a part of this project. The girls’ zeal and enthusiasm for learning ignited the fire of wanting to do even more (perhaps there was just flammable gas in the past). From the camp I realized what beauty there is in generosity, self-giving and sacrifice, and looking out for people whom you never knew and have come to see as a family within a space of 3 days or less. It wasn’t just a service project to me, it was a complete learning project, and it was a gift, an encouragement and an avenue to see even clearly where I am headed.

The first working session - teaching practice
The first working session – teaching practice
Working session...
Working session…








Ore said:

I must say, my experience at the camp in Ajah, was a splendid one, we ate, played and worked. Anyway, it was really fun and I learnt a lot; etiquette and being able to wake up early and tidy the house, being closer to God also. This service project was really a splendid one for me…

Maryann and Sadia after a hard day’s job
Chidera teaching some students
Chidera teaching some students








Sandra said:

Basically, the whole aim of the camping was to carry out a service project which included clearing up and arranging a mini study room for some secondary kids who are really not opportune and exposed to standard education. We did the best we could, we taught them and it was really interesting although a bit tasking. Asides the service project, the camping made us kind of responsible as we had to wake up early, dress up within limited time, clean up the house, wash up the bathrooms, cook etc. Although the cleaning part wasn’t totally fun but I guess it’s something everyone needs its experience once in a while.

Sandra enjoying her teaching experience
Sandra enjoying her teaching experience
Sandra with a student…








Sadia said:

First and foremost, I am in love with the house we stayed in apart from the fact that there was no water the first night. I loved the fact that we girls got to come together to pass knowledge to other girls that needed it. The time table was quite conducive and the fact that there was a bus conveying us to the site and other places was good. Sleeping areas were fine and the meals were good and I liked the fact that we got to cook our meals and set our tables. I have learnt a great deal, not only from teaching but also from living with different girls and doing things together. I learnt how to make orange slices!

Sadia with the students
Sadia with the students
Maryann with the students
Maryann with the students








Ifeoma said:

The motivating factor behind my partaking in this camp was the fact that it had to do with teaching because I love teaching, and being a medium of service to the community and for God’s sake, I found it all interesting. Ranging from our trip to the ‘palace’ we lodged, to getting to know each other, to the sanitation, to the meals we had, to the work at the teaching site to the movie we saw, to the teaching, to the games we played etc., it was all interesting and worthwhile.

Ifeoma in her element
Ifeoma in her element
Writing our camp experience
Writing our camp experience








Chidera said:

In total, I loved the service project, it was worth all my time and I would like to do it over and over again. I liked every day, even the most stressful ones were still fun. This service project felt like a FAMILY gathering of unrelated people.

Chidera with her students
Chidera with her students
Working session on Laudato Si - The Pope's latest encyclical
Working session on Laudato Si – The Pope’s latest encyclical








DSC09406The camp ended on Sunday with a trip to the pool where Sandra, Ore and Sadia perked up their swimming skills.

Published by Afara Leadership Centre

Afara Leadership Centre was set up in 1987 to provide an enabling environment for total personal development as well as growth in leadership skills and values for young women in their years of secondary and tertiary education. It is located at 25 Thorburn Avenue, off Montgomery, Yaba, Lagos State, Nigeria. It is a project of Women’s Board of the Education Cooperation Society, a Nigerian not-for-profit, non-governmental organization. The spiritual formation given in the Centre is entrusted to Opus Dei, an institution of the Catholic Church

One thought on “To Serve Our Fatherland

  1. It’s really refreshing to see young dynamic girls giving their all to serve others. I’m really very happy and proud of what Afara is doing… And girls! You guys can’t imagine the long way your little contribution will go. You have changed in a certain way the lives of those girls you taught. Way to go girls! Keep it up!


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