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Young Change Maker – Erisa Danladi

danladi-erisa1The Need
Tabra is a community in Gombe state faced with many challenges, including the lack of toilet in the Community Maternity. Invariably if you became pressed while in the maternity, you had the option of enduring it until you get home or using an open space close by. This is a real problem faced by communities all across Nigeria and Africa at large.

The Innovative Idea Response
After attending DESPLAY Africa Youth Democracy Fellowship, Erisa had to conduct a mandatory Pass it On (PiO) activity which involved youth in the community, one of the outcomes of the activity was that the youth decided to work with Erisa to construct a toilet for the Maternity. The toilet was named “A Breath of Fresh Air”.

The Story
It is rare to see females from the north with passion for community work, largely because of the cultural realities of the north. However it is heartwarming to note that there are young and emerging females determined to make a change in their communities, one of such is Erisa Danladi, a graduate of Theatre and Communication Arts from the University of Jos. Her participation in DESPLAY exposed her to a new concept of citizenship and youth participation and between March and November 2009, she embarked on two projects in Tabra Community of Akko Local Government Area of Gombe State, one of which was to construct a toilet for the Maternity in the community. At first it looked impossible but with determination and resilience, she mobilized youths, raised funds and kind donations and today the toilet is standing for community use.

Result
Indeed hundreds of women, children and even men who visit the Community Maternity have enjoyed “A Breath of Fresh Air” each time they are pressed and need to use the toilet. This is because the challenge of using open spaces or bushes or rushing back home is no more. Indeed, one person with commitment and passion can make a huge difference irrespective of gender, age or location. We see many more Erisa emerge across the nation. Erisa is also a passionate farmer with many acres of farmland under her management.

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