Saturday, 24 December 2011

The needy smile on Keep It Real charity fair


NGOs cutting Charity Fair cake 

THE premises of Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos, was recently blessed with activities as different vendors, non-governmental and not-for-profit organisations across the country held the maiden edition of December Charity Fair.
KIR Foundation Stand
Bitebo Gogo, Founder, KIR Foundation 
  With Promoting Synergy, Making Greater Impact Together as theme, the event served as a platform for organisations not known to the public to shed light on their activities and appeal for supports and sponsorship while established ones harped on their achievements and challenges.
  Organised by Keep It Real (KIR) Foundation in partnership with Nigeria Network of NGOs (NNNGO), Toru Ofili Foundation (TOF), Children And The Environment (CATE) and Street Child Care Welfare Initiative (SCCWI), the gathering featured presentations from diverse groups, including children from Red Cross Orphanage, Makoko, Lagos.
Children of Red Cross Orphanage, Matron, KIR members and supporter  
   Aside from talks, networking and stage performances, the event also tagged Charity Market Place, saw the presentation of two books, The 17 Secrets of Flying Students by Fela Durotoye, and Rage For Change by LEAP Africa, as well as the cutting of the organisation’s cake.
A guest at a stand 
   Guests were filled with emotions when a visually impaired woman, Moriayo Ojo, narrated her woes, and how her life has been made better by Jakin, one of the NGOs, which did not only care for her by paying her rents and sponsoring her blind child’s education, but empowered her with a trade.
  The presentations of children from Red Cross Orphanage, Makoko, drew tears from many, as they called for help, stating litany of challenges confronting them.
  In support of the home, the pupils, ranging from three years to nine, donated one of their art works, Molue — graphic representation Lagos city bus in a rustic suburb of Lagos  — which was auctioned for N100, 000.
     Various gifts including laptops were also given out to empower some of the street children that had learned some trade and now leading good life.
    Also, the winner of Book Reading completition got a laptop and N40, 000 cash prize for his group.
Founder, Jakin Foundaton and Moriayo Ojo   
  BITEBO Gogo, Founder/ Executive Director of Keeping It Real (KIR) Foundation, said, “we have numerous problems in the country and different NGOs doing different things; some of the NGOs don’t even have the opportunity to be heard. I believe if individuals come together and NGOs come under one roof, we would be able to achieve more because with synergy you make more impact.”
Matro from Red Cross Society
  Gogo said she decided to include the market place “to give opportunity for the NGOs to showcase what they do and also for young entrepreneurs who do not have opportunity to do Community Social Responsibility (CSR) to be aware of NGOs they could easily identify with. It is an opportunity to help the NGOs.”
 Artworks on display at KIR Foundation stand
  On reason for mixing books and charity, she informed, “I love books and I want to promote books. Majority of these young people want to read, but are not given books to read, basically, because their parents cannot afford it. I believe when children begin to read, they would grow up to become leaders; because a reading mind is a leading mind.”
   Commending the initiative, environmental activist Sola Alamutu of Children And The Environment (CATE), said irrespective of the low turnout, the gathering was a success.
 Sola Alamutu of CATE
“The event is truly successful, for example, look at the painting of a group of children going for a N100, 000. The money will go a long way to impact on the lives of these children who live in orphanage. Another, success recorded is that, the event enabled some of the NGOs to get may be just one person to sponsor them, because the people that have come to the feast did not just come to drink and eat, but for the genuine cause of the NGOs and the vulnerable children,” Alamutu said.

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