As part of efforts to ensure life is easier for the underprivileged people in Osun communities, about 100 widows were last week given empowerment to enable them survive the stay-at-home period while the nation fights the spread of coronavirus by a nongovernmental organisation, The Prof Ademola Adesina Memorial Foundation.
The foundation which was established in memory of the Late Professor Adesina to continue his legacy of good deeds to mankind. The foundation, established in 2017 to cater for widows, children and underprivileged people has been providing opportunities to the under privileged in terms of scholarships, cash donations and sponsorships. And last week, it gathered widows around Igbajo town to give them aid.
The project was originally meant to be a medical outreach and empowerment programme for the people of Igbajo and environs and was designed to be part of activities lined up for the commemoration of the 33rd Igbajo Day celebration, a week-long programme with diverse activities.
The foundation was expected to hold its health fair on Tuesday, April 7 on the lineup of activities but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the programme could not hold. As a result, the foundation deemed it fit not to relent in its effort or go back on its promise to empower the people as it has in line with its vision helped about 100 people on diverse issues.
And to ensure that it still touched lives, 50 widows were selected from the five ogbons areas across Igbajo: Ogbon Atiba, Ogbon Iloro , Ogbon Isao, Ogbon Oguru and Ogbon Oke Oja as primary beneficiaries while there were stragglers that also showed up and were attended to.
The selection of beneficiaries was spearheaded by the Iyalode of Igbajo, Chief (Mrs) Adebimpe Adebowale, along with the Ogbon heads without bias. And palliatives were distributed with the permission and help of the deputy governor of Osun State, Gboyega Alabi, and the Commissioner for Commerce, Industry and Empowerment, Dr Bode Olanipekun.
The brain behind the foundation, Hon Dapo Ademola-Adesina, who is the only son of late Professor Ademola Adesina, said the vision of the group is to touch lives and make an everlasting impact on humanity while ensuring that the legacy and passion of Prof Ademola Adesina to reach out to the underprivileged continues on earth without making it a jamboree.
According to Hon. Ademola-Adesina, the widowhood empowerment programme is one of first public major activities of the foundation as other activities have been quiet and behind the scenes. He explained that over time, the foundation had donated food during festivals to Christians and Moslems throughout Ademola-Adesina’s federal constituency (Boluwaduro, Ila and Ifedayo).
“We have sponsored tuition for students and paid for examinations. We have reached out to so many people, especially at home and in the Diaspora, and this is not just for people that we know but for anyone that needs the help of the foundation because the vision is to reach people irrespective of religion, tribe, political affiliation or social status. Beneficiaries are selected based on their genuine need without bias.
“We cannot quantify how much we have spent. It’s very difficult to quantify because I just try to give and put a smile on people’s faces. What is spent involves much more than what we give people; we also have to think of transportation, planning and logistics. We are, however, happy that we have gotten very touching feedbacks from people even on social media and from the widows who never expected such good deeds from us.
“We also got calls from the Owa of Igbajo and the Owa -in -Council of Igbajo land and numerous other sons and daughters of Osun State. The joy is that we can make people happy.
The late Professor Shim Oluwole Ademola Adesina was born in Ibadan on October 23 1943. He was a Senior Lecturer and later became a Reader at the Department of Architecture, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria after which he became a Professor of Architecture and Dean of Faculty of Environmental Sciences at the then Bendel State University (now Ambrose Alli University) in 1987.
He was the Pioneer Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Studies at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology. Ogbomoso and was later appointed Minister of State for Agriculture and Natural Resources. During this period, he fought for the creation of Boluwaduro Local Government, which was created and announced on October 1, 1996. He died at the peak of his career at the age of 54 on June 14, 1997.
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