Sarah Ogbewey

2022 IVLP Impact Award Project: Haduwar Matasa Da Jami’an Tsaro (English Translation from Hausa - Joint Alliance of Youths and Federal Security Agents)Nigeria

Sarah Ogbewey’s multi-faceted experience of over 14 years spans across the sustainable development sectors in health, education, environment and security and covers nine of the Sustainable Development Goals. The British High Commission in Nigeria named her a Climate Champion in preparation for Glasgow C.O.P. 26. Her latest project “Waste-To-Art Week” was supported by the British Council Lagos. Her most recent technology-driven project “Recycle Hubs” is supported by Fate Foundation and the Orange Corners Nigeria of the Embassy of Netherlands. Sarah is an alumna of the International Visitor Leadership Program, which is a professional exchange program of the United States Department of State. Her community development work supported the U.S. Embassy diplomatic missions in Nigeria on countering violent extremism and promoting child rights. As a youth leader, Sarah was nominated by the World Youth Alliance to represent Nigeria on invitation by Pope Francis to meet in Rome with 11 other youths from Middle East, Asia and Africa. Her hobbies include teaching arts and languages. She runs a free training on her Instagram page that teaches young social entrepreneurs and social development workers around Africa on strategies to success and to accessing grants. Sarah is a pharmacist by profession with over 14 years of post-graduation experience in various fields. However in recent years, sustainable local and international development has won her heart. 

IVLP Impact Award Project: Haduwar Matasa Da Jami’an Tsaro (English Translation from Hausa - Joint Alliance of Youths and Federal Security Agents)

Following Boko Haram's insurgency in northern Nigerian in 2009, the number of Nigerians killed continues to increase. Both civilians and security force members have been murdered, destroying approximately 26 billion naira of livelihood. The majority of the 3 million internally displaced survivors live in refugee camps, and many are still traumatized by the skirmishes and deaths. For the few who have managed to return to their land, their communities are divided by contentious rivalry and distrust. In particular, there are high tensions between the security agencies and the aggrieved youths. Although the government deployed security personnel to maintain law and order, the enmity and tensions have made the situation into a time-bomb waiting to explode at any moment. This relationship has the potential to worsen the overall situation in the country, which could lead to further deaths and destruction of property.

As a strategy to support the healing process and to prevent a war in Kaduna state, Sarah's project impacted 40 youths in Kaduna State. They held dialogue sessions and interactive trainings and meetings with 50 federal security agents and local police officers who are influential leaders. The youth leaders were nominated by the local government chairmen, traditional rulers and Kaduna State University. There was a 50:50 ratio of females to males and they were chosen by four violence-prone local governments (two predominantly Muslim and two predominately Christian). The project aimed to build leadership capacities for peace and reconciliation among the youth leaders and promote concepts such as tolerance and patience, value for human life, peaceful co-existence and self-control. It also aimed to promote dialogue as a means to encourage civil society relationships as an integral part of democratic leadership. This was accomplished by holding a series of 8 meetings with the youth leaders, 6 meetings between the youth leaders and security forces, and 2 joint leadership seminars between the youth leaders and security forces. 

"...I believe discussions like this are needful, because they often spark further engagements." - Project Participant

IVLP Exchange Experience 

Sarah was a participant in the IVLP Project: NGO Management III, organized by the U.S. Department of State and Meridian International Center.

U.S. Communities Visited Virtually

Colorado Springs, CO; Washington, DC; Orlando, FL; Des Moines, IA; Indianapolis, IN; New Orleans, LA; Springfield, MA; Kansas City, MO; Charlotte, NC; Santa Fe, NW; San Antonio, TX; Seattle, WA; Milwaukee, WI

Country: Nigeria

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