Azubuike’s Inspiring Story Of Youth Corps Community Service
The quote, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country” by former American President John Kennedy appropriately captures the essence of Chibuzor Miran Azubuike’s book The Girl Who Found Water.
It’s a memoir of her years as a Youth Corpoer in Bauchi State before insurgency siege.
Azubuike is an epitome of what change truly is in a hopeless community. The story is told in a simple language that recurs and endears it to readers. In 114 pages, Azubuike recounts a story full of emotional trauma, as she saw her being posted to Bauchi State to serve as a punishment rather than a blessing.
Her reaction is typical of Corper members from the south posted to the north, because of Boko Haram insurgency. Apparently posted to what could be termed a harsh environment, Azubuike recounts how she put up a good fight to achieve her goal of making impact in the community of Bigi Tudun Wada, a community with over six thousand population that got water from only one well. Azubuike took up the challenge, as her Community Development Project to provide clean water for the people.
According to her, “The budget for the borehole was N600,000, but I was optimistic I could raise it”.
Some individuals and ministries rejected her proposals, but her persistence paid off when her project was commissioned and she was named Lady Haske (a clean lady) and also crowned Sarkin Aiyuka (king of hard work) by the community. The book also provides a broad picture of the average Nigerian who has very little knowledge of his country. As such, he relies on half-truths or lies from other people until he encounters the local community and is enchanted by what he sees.
The Girl Who Found Water gives a picture of efforts being made to sustain the intent of the NYSC scheme to integrate Nigerians. The book is an inspirational piece to those who are being discouraged by family, friends or society. Chibuzor had to overcome her fears despite the discouragements from the society and her friends.
She had so much expectation from her service year. As she put it, “I wanted to learn a foreign language and engage in meaningful activities that would add to my CV and increase my chances of getting a good job after the mandatory service year”.
The Girl Who Found Water encourages today’s youths, especially aspiring corps members to report to whichever state they are deployed instead of struggling to get redeployed, as one can never know where his or her would excel.
Azubuike’s style is captivating and entertaining and makes for easy reading. Other corpers will be inspired to follow her example and give quality service during their service year. Buoyed by her success in making water available for a landlocked community, Ms Azubuike is setting up her NGO project where she could continue impacting society through service.
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