By Victor Saleh
I am actually of the school of thought that says “Life is not just about earning but about impact, and you start living when you start making impact f not you are just existing”. We all belong to a community and each of them are faced with one issue or the other. The question today is; what are you and I doing in our various communities to make it better? After interacting with several young people about this question in Nigeria, most people told me it’s not my responsibility but that that of the government. As Nigerians we must understand that we have roles to play in national development. Be a person of impact where ever you are; leadership is less about titles and more about influence.
I want to challenge you to make an impact in your own little way in your community rather than waiting for the government. If people like Nelson Mandela, Mother Theresa, etc. decided to wait for the government imagine how the lives of people they touched must have ended. Let’s look at these 3 simple steps that will help you make your environment better than you met it;
Every community have different issues they are battling with. A community in Lagos, Nigeria might be having issues with bad roads while another community in United Kingdom might be having issues with rape. So all you need to do first is to take time to observe, ask questions, and know what the major problems the community are faced with are.
It is advisable you do some research to identify the needs of your community before you can help your community. Understanding the problem itself will really help you so well in implementing the other steps effectively.
After the identification and understanding of the problem, the next thing you will need to do is to think through the problems and make research about it in other to know the right approach to solving it. Most times, I notice that almost every problem faced in our communities have been faced by another community in the past too; researching to know how they handled it will really help you a whole lot in addressing the problem.
Attend community events; it’s likely that other people and organizations in your community are also taking steps to help improve it. They probably hold festivals, cleanups and meetings in an effort to make the neighborhood a better place. How often do you show up to community events? Start going to as many as you can. Move around the community and talk with the people and you will be amazed at the ideas people will share with you on the way out. You can even know more about the origin of the problem as you interact and rob minds with like-minded people, and even elders in the community.
The third step is implementation of the solution that you must have found out for the community after critically going through step two. Outline a plan for getting things done; to accomplish your goals, you’re going to need an action plan. And to execute an action plan, you’ll probably need some help and funding. Write up a plan that details everything you’re going to need to accomplish a given goal, including the following: People, money, and other resources.
Get other people involved; ask around to find out who else is as excited to make a difference as you are. Try to form a core group of activists committed to carrying out the plan to improve your community. Volunteer for a group that does work you admire. Every nonprofit or community organization in your area is probably in need of volunteers and you can volunteer with them if is in the area of your expertise or passion. Donating your time is an excellent way to have a positive effect on your community, and to strengthen your relationships with your fellow community members, too. I advise you start a page on Facebook possibly and do a campaign to drag the attention f people towards it if is something very big and capital intensive. Meet organizations and agencies around for support if needed. Meet the community forum and they can charge the people some amount of money if is not something to large to fix. You can race funds too to help sought this issues out. I advise you take action by implementing the solution. No matter how well you have planned, is the implementation that will make the major difference.
Have a mindset of impact. Do not join the bandwagon of complainers around, instead of wasting time complaining, why not sit and think through on how you can make a difference. You might be told by people that thing has been and can’t be changed, well them nothing is impossible and change is a constant thing. Move from here today and become an influence and impact maker in your community. Here this, leadership is not about title but about vision and ability to influence resources towards its fulfillment. You can get in touch with me for any advice on community development issues. You can visit http://salehvictor.com to read up more articles that are inspiring and educative.
Victor Saleh is a Writer, Public Speaker, ad Digital Media Consultant
Image Credit: Shutter Shock
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author not of NDLink