4th year, Business & Entrepreneurship Management student, Chidera Ibe just turned 21. To celebrate her birthday, she chose to donate food items to 15 families affected by the Bokoharam insurgency, pay school fees for 5 orphans and feed Almajiri boys on the streets of Yola.
On March 26th, 2021 instead of having a party with friends, she sought out the less privileged. She was motivated by altruistic reflections about life.
“ Well as we know, these past few years have been tough for a lot of us, and the fact that I'm still able to stand, I don't have any illness, no problem at all. It is a big deal for me. So I just have to give back as a way of saying thank you and be appreciative.” Said Chidera.
Chidera with beneficiaries of her donation
AUN is a Development University and one of the school’s core philosophies is to positively impact host communities. The Community Service Office led by Mr. Aliyu Alhaji plans community intervention projects for students and faculty alike. With COVID 19 restrictions, it has been a bit more difficult. So the Community Service Office sought out families devastated by Bokoharam and brought them to campus following strict COVID-19 protocols.
“The community service office supports students' activities. We encourage them to give back to the community in support of the university’s development mission. That is why we used to take students out to do most of these projects. For them to have first-hand knowledge of what’s happening, to see the problems of these communities so they can solve them. They are the future leaders. When they get to know these problems at a young age, the solutions might come very easily when they graduate. Chidera is a young girl, just turning twenty-one and she was so thoughtful to say ‘It’s my birthday and I want to give back to the community so she was able to support fifteen families and six orphans in Government Girls College, Yola.” Said Mr. Aliyu, the Director of the Community Service Office.
Chidera believes the university’s community focus has influenced her life in so many ways.
“Because of the skills, I have learned in AUN, giving back to my community through AUN programs encouraged me to do things that will impact my community. I just wrote something on my note, telling people my motive, what I want to do and how I need help. I posted it on social media and I was shocked as people donated a lot of money, clothes, and other things. They also offered to go with me because I didn't want to do it alone and even people referred me to the community service department here in school and it ended up being bigger than I expected.”
When Chidera is not busy studying, she spends time baking cakes and building her phone accessory retail business.
“Coming into this school, I just knew I wanted to do business but I didn't know what kind of business I wanted to do, so I opened my mind and after going through so many interesting courses with passionate faculty members, I was privileged to come across different people that taught me different things. Things that normal school curriculums will not teach you. So I know now what I want to do, how I want to impact as well as making a profit.it's about studying your surroundings as well. The School of Business & Entrepreneurship has been very helpful because I've learned a lot.” Said Chidera.
Chidera hopes her story will inspire others to be more charitable. She says a little will always go a long way.
“Well, definitely a lot of people need our help and most of them, are not as fortunate as we are. Even the little things you have to offer to the community will really help a lot. It’s not just one person that can do this. We should all help as many people as we can, raise others. I don't know where these girls are going to end up, they might end up helping my kids someday. So whatever good thing you do, it will always come back to you. Said Chidera.
Marking another year of life may be a rite of passage for some. Many others celebrate birthdays in merriment with loved ones. For Chidera however, 2021 has been a challenging year and she believes the best way to show gratitude for surviving such a trying time is by showing love to the less fortunate. She is indeed a true embodiment of the AUN stallion spirit
Reported by the Office of Communications