If we can each do something, no matter how little, the world will one day be a better place for all of us to live in. Sometimes we are carried away with trying to achieve big impact while in the real sense; small efforts can ignite enduring change in the community. This was the case when Fr. Patrick Esekon and Beji upon the invitation of Fr Emmanuel Likoko SPS worked with the youth of Amukoko in Lagos State Nigeria. Amukoko is one of the biggest slums in Lagos. It is characterized with all kinds of vices from arm banditry, rape, gangsterism amongst others.
In the midst of these challenges are a large legion of resilient, well educated and responsible youth who have been intimidated to submission and accepting these endless challenges as part of life. This was the case during the sharing in the groups as it seems they are in agreement particularly in the case of rape that the victims are usually responsible for attacks on them because of their provocative sensual dress styles. It was difficult tasks trying to challenge this societal long held view, trying to drum the message home, we asked particularly the males to picture their sister, daughter, girlfriend, wife or mother being the victim using. This drove the point home and we used the opportunity to challenge them on mobilizing community effort on rape. It was sad that seated at the workshop were victims of rape who have not received any form of support for the fear of stigmatization and profiling from the community.
At the end of the one week workshop in June 2016, the youths of Amukoko under the leadership of Mr. Paul have taken up Sex Education with concentration on awareness creation on rape as a project. They have begun consultation with the key stakeholders in the community to kick start the project with the SELL office in Bauchi working with other NGO’s providing technical support.