“I went to bed hungry many nights as a child. It was a Dream that dressed me up when I was ragged, and it was a Dream that filled me up when I was hungry. Now it’s my Dream to see that no child in this world ever goes hungry, certainly not here in America, the most bountiful country in the world. We can do better…we must!”
The above quote by Dolly Parton, an American singer, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, actress, author, businesswoman and humanitarian aptly describes my experience with hunger, deprivation, starvation, joblessness and hopelessness at certain period in my life. Years back, as a wife and mother of two small kids, I have had to result to begging to feed, cloth, house and meet some of our daily needs in order to survive. I remember how my family went to bed with empty stomach for many nights. I remember wearing rags on my body, I remember how I used to depend on handouts and charity from families and friends just to eat. I remember how I took to the internet begging for financial help that some would later mock me about. I remember what it used to be to be jobless and hopeless…I have walked that path and I sincerely understand what hopelessness means and the attendant mockery that anyone could face even from supposed closed associates just because one is indigent.
Having experienced this state of hopelessness and lack in those years, I made up my mind like Mother Teresa that if I could not feed a hundred people, then I should feed just one and also help empower people in any little way I can. It was my experience with lack, hunger, poverty, starvation and joblessness that birthed what is known today as Adex Adebukola CrownGold Foundation (AACF) popularly referred to as “Givers’ Arena” which became officially registered in Nigeria on 14th of June, 2017. Though while waiting for legal approval of AACF, we had set the ball rolling months before by reaching out to the less privileged and the needy online in our own little way, with the same platform I used to beg for financial help when I was in the wilderness of hopelessness years ago.
In our society today, close to one eight of the world’s population still live in hunger and live in abject poverty. Each year millions of people including young, old, women, men, across diverse tribes, religions and beliefs die because of poverty and hunger around the world. This is happening when there are some people in our society who are blessed and wealthy enough to uplift the welfare of the needy and less privileged. Ironically, it is a case of some eating too much while others die daily of poverty and starvation. What a pity!
In the words of Anne Frank, “hunger is not a problem. It is an obscenity. How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” I have made up my mind never to wait a single moment any more before I reach out to the indigent, the needy, the widow, the jobless, that single mother, widower, poor students, that artisan and budding entrepreneurs who need our helping hands to be economically productive and become useful to our society. I have made up my mind to just reach them through this NGO in any little way I can. To uplift their souls, inspire them and give them hope through empowerment, financial and material supports that I can. The increasing millions of less privileged in our country, Nigeria need our support and through ACCF, we can jointly reach them and be our brothers’ and sisters’ keeper!
Adeniwura Adebukola Temitope