Becoming a global change agent starts from making impact from the local level or grassroots.
These were the words of Amb. Taiwo and Kehinde Adebiyi at this year’s International Youth Day at a virtual conference organised by His Marvellous Grace Support Foundation held on Saturday, 15 August 2020, with the theme, ‘Becoming a Global Change Agent’.
According to Mr Taiwo Adebiyi, who is the founder of the Sustainable Development Advocates (SDA), the first registered SDG group in the University of Lagos and also a final year Civil Engineering student of the University, “we rise by helping others to rise. By changing the world around us, we are changing our own world”.
He spoke on the importance of self development before being able to effect change adding that “you cannot give what you don’t have”. Taiwo, also a first class student, said this principle helped him achieve the feat in his academics, it also helped him to be able to co-found the first registered Sustainable Development Goals Group in UNILAG with his twin brother.
Speaking further, Taiwo emphasised that there’s hope for Nigeria despite the many challenges bedevilling the nation. According to him, Nigerian youths are doing great in the country and abroad sighting lack of enabling environment as the reason for the challenges confronting them.
However, he tasked youth to join politics so that the narrative can change. He said this approach worked for him as being an Advocate of the SDGs and the National Association of Civil Engineering Students in UNILAG has helped him attain his desirable change in many ways.
Amb. Kehinde Adebiyi toed the line of his twin brother taking time to correct the misconception behind global change agent.
The program coordinator of the Millennium Campus Network (MCN) who also doubles as the National Director of Campuses SDGsACT Nigeria submitted that becoming a global change agent goes beyond attending conferences and seminars but it is all about making impact and changing lives at the local level.
The first class graduate of Lagos State University (LASU) acknowledged that challenges will come but passion and partnership with like minds will go a long way in birthing the desired change.
Amb. Kehinde also emphasised on the need to create a niche and also invest in self development especially in the area of academics as they will be a pointer to others to get themselves in driving change in the society.
He concluded that going into politics in order to bring change to the society is not a bad idea but cautioned that “your aim should be selfless and not selfish”.