The motivation for setting the Lagos Food Bank is in two prongs:
- Personal Experience of the founder
- The increase in number of social welfare inequity and poverty in Nigeria
For Ifeanyi Damian, the Founder and Director of Operations of Care for Social Welfare International (CASWI), that mission is deeply personal. Growing up in Maiduguri under a single parent after he lost his Father at a young age, Ifeanyi and his family experienced poverty and lack of basic social welfare amenities firsthand. This caused serval delays in his academic life and that of his family members. Following his family conditions Ifeanyi experiences a lot of injustices in pursing his goal as a child despite the fact his mother was trading to provide for him and his family. Growing up in as a young teenager in Maiduguri metropolitan council, Ifeanyi begin to observe how children, teenagers and even adult (otherwise known as the Almagiri) go around begging for food every day. This made Ifeanyi seized every opportunity he has to join in community outreach as a volunteer during undergraduate studies and NYSC to understand the root cause and after series of different visitation he discovered that despite his condition as a child he was still better off than those who had no one to provide for them or those whose parent or care giver has no means of livelihood or displaced persons the depth of conditions that are in across the community experiencing poverty in its worst form and greater risk of marginalization in social welfare provision as bad as not having .
“It was such an unpleasant experience,” that lead Ifeanyi to says of that time;
“This has been my passion, to be at the forefront of helping individuals (especially youth and women), and families affected by poverty and social welfare injustice in building resilience and become self-sufficient to encourage development that bridges the gap across humanity development”
Today, Ifeanyi is a human right activist, writer, youth mentor and live coach in the development sector driven by his passion and experience. He is the CEO of his own company. Care for Social Welfare International is today a leading Non-profit Organization that champions youth, women and community development. Being the first to launch several youth and women project in their state of operations in Nigeria.
Even before the COVID-19 crisis, around 4 in 10 Nigerians were living in poverty and millions more were vulnerable to falling below the poverty line. World bank (2019) published that an estimate of more than half of Nigerians 54.4% live in poverty with 70.8% of this living below the International poverty line of less than $1.90 per person per day. Nigerian National Bureau of Statistics (April 2021) suggest that the dual COVID-19 and oil price crisis alone could push around 10 million additional Nigerians into poverty by 2022 implying that over 27,000 Nigerians are sliding into abject poverty on a daily basis, with the rising insecurity, corruption, poor governance, rapid population growth and economic decline, more Nigerians about 70% of the country’s population will be living below the international poverty line of $1.90 per person per day (2011 PPP) by the end of 2030 if nothing is done urgently and intentionally.
According to the World Bank, Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI), Nigeria tops list of countries in Sub-Saharan Africa with most people living in abject poverty and everyday more than 87 Nigerians are moving into poverty, living below $1 per day in country with the current high level of insecurity, corruption, poor governance, poor economic, rapid population growth and global pandemic situation that is affecting the country, poverty and inequality is on the rise.
It is a known fact that the lack of basic social welfare amenities across communities leads to limited opportunities for such communities which directly creates a gap across all sector of human capital development that leads to poverty, which is obvious that poverty itself creates a chain of negative reactions across all sector of humanity development.
More effort commitment is needed to end inequality in social welfare provision and poverty as sustainable development itself cannot be achieved As long as there is a wide gap in the spread of social welfare justice in our society poverty.
Here is a graphical representation of the Nigerian poverty rate reported by World data lab
At Care for Social Welfare International we are determined and committed in bridging the gap in social welfare provision and poverty reduction across communities through a system that seeks to create a balance in the supply of basic social welfare needs of individuals that provides the right opportunity and platforms for humanity growth and development that will fight against inequality and poverty across communities by delivering food, basic health services, basic educational interventions, vocational skill training, empowerment packages and disaster relief items.
We continue to champion adequate healthcare, education, women and children care, teenagers and youth development by offering interventions and initiatives that empower the vulnerable. We believe that impacting humanity is important no matter how small because everyone deserves an opportunity to live and have access to the basic needs of life. We offer grass root community responses channeled to basic social welfare amenities needs.
We are ready to partner with religious organizations, corporate entities, international communities, local, National and foreign Governments and communities to bridge the gap in social welfare provision and poverty reduction. Our goal is committed to ensuring and improving the living conditions of vulnerable and indigent persons, protect them and build them to become good ambassadors to their communities and a blessing to humanity through building there social and economic capacity
WE ARE OPTIMISTIC
We are mindful of the fact that the problems we seek to solve are complex and demand the coordination and focus of many stakeholders – leaders, governments, corporate entities, communities, and individuals around in our Nation. Achieving our goal may look challenging, but we know we can get it done together with our committed and dedicated partners, volunteers and staffs members the goal is possible.