CEM Feature, Lagos
The corona virus pandemic and the consequent lockdowns and restrictions that followed happened so fast without space for preparation or adjustment to face the outburst of hardship, fear and uncertainty. Relying on aid for survival was neither cowardice nor act of weakness. Majority of Nigerians needed support to cope with the life threatening paucity and economic setback.
Businesses had abruptly came to a hurt and livelihood of majority was suspended. Daily hustlers who depends on daily work for income became perplexed as survival was unsure.
While all attention was on the government initially, to rise to the responsibility, it soon became obvious that the response from that quarter was far less than required and expected. It soon became clear that Nigerian government is incapable of handling such volume of liability
That was a dangerous reality that was capable of resulting to unprecedented chaos signaled by the ‘one million boys’ in Lagos who were already harassing households.
As usual, Nigerians had to quickly rise up for themselves as individuals, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Corporate Organizations and Faith Based Organizations (FBOs) whose empathic actions is greatly commendable.
While big organizations reached out to larger beneficiaries in addition to their donations to federal and state governments, smaller ones gave out to their immediate environments or to their vulnerable members.
Dangote led Nigerian Private Sector Coalition Against COVID-19 for instance raised well above NGN15 billion for the Federal Government to procure medical equipment and other logistics in the fight against the pandemic.
As well, unannounced and undocumented support that were made from individuals, NGOs and Faith Based Organizations to other Nigerians is well above NGN50 billion in form of physical cash and food items. These donations made deeper impact as palliative since they were well informed and channeled down to those that truly needed them.
An anonymous, a young man distributed N1,000 to those that passed him and considered as those that need help
The Catholic Graduate Forum, a group of young graduates in St Joseph Catholic Church, Gowon Estate, out of its lean resources bought and distributed food items to members and needy neighboring households.
The group was founded to assist members gain employment through assess to jobs related information and skills acquisitions fora such as seminars and workshops.
Dako Foundation, a health based NGO bought food items and distributed to specific communities they know needed them.
Stop Hurting People Foundation, a Faith Base Organization founded by Pastor Eunice Iferi Chukwuemeka, hastily distributed N2,000 to 10,000 Nigerians to “ensure the common man does not die of hunger while on lockdown”.
Sure Smiles Women and Children Advocacy Initiative (SSWCAI), an Abuja based Non-Governmental Organisation, distributed various food items, eggs and condiment to the less privileged in Abuja Nigeria’s capital.
Deeper Life Bible Church Distributed food items to church members.
Initiatives for Youth Development and Impact Makers (IYDIM) Nigeria, distributed over hundred bags of rice, facemask, poster/fliers, noodles and undisclosed amount of money to widows and indigent families in Ebonyi State
This list is inexhaustible for sure. These are only mentioned as an open vote of commendation to the benevolence showed by Nigerians to Nigerians.