A STAR or A MODEL: To Who Do We Expose Our Children Today?  

I have dedicated the better part of my adult life seeking healing from the impact of my troubled childhood. I have also, by the sole help of God Almighty democratised in my areas of influence, the comfort I have received so far, preaching with every breath in my lungs, the Gospel According to Child Protection. The main focus of this unusual Gospel is to preserve CHILDHOOD in today’s child and attempt to restore CHILDHOOD to children and adults, who have lost same.  I pursue the foregoing commitment with almost an obsessive sense of mission and I am unrepentant.

There is an abnormality, I have seen among some of us, who plead the cause of the child. It is that we are not careful about the people we present or endorse to children as role models. We do this presentation and endorsement by exposing children to their music and other works, inviting them to children programs as guests or speakers, appoint them as ambassadors to our organisations, get them to endorse our programs etc.

I think the mistake, we often make is that we mistake stardom for character and popular acceptance for acceptable values fit to be introduced to our children to emulate. A lot of times we tie the ‘successes of our program’ to the attendance by popular persons.

The question is that we fail to define in terms of the impact on the children, what a successful program is. For many of mass attendance of a program has been equated with successes without a taking a careful inventory of the contents of the program and the impact same have on children in the present and the future.

It is my belief that our contents for a program and the people we call upon to deliver the contents must represent the objective of the program. As a professional in the field of Child Protection, I believe that every gathering of children, irrespective of its nature, either for fun or for serious exchange must answer the BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD TEST. It is in THE BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD, that we expose him/her to positive values and people who represent same in their private and public lives. It is the best interest of the child to preserve CHILDHOOD in a child and point him/her to those who have done same. Curiosity, innocence, freedom, peace and joy are the fundamental characteristics of CHILDHOOD. Some people have ignorantly or deliberately committed themselves to robbing children of these fundamental characteristics of children and yet, we bring them to our platforms as entertainers, speakers and all.

One of the best ways to get children to respect themselves , respect other members of the society and stand up for their own protection is through value orientation and value reorientation. Values are not independent variables. They live in and are live out by people, who demonstrate to children that sanity and soundness is a possibility in today’s perverted world.

Please note that the advocacy today is not for presenting to our children, people, who are perfect in character and commitment to positive values. There are no perfect human beings as we are not also raising perfect children. The point here is that before we present people to children as role models, we must be concerned about what they stand for in their private and public lives.

As one, who works with children and their caregivers, I am always careful, who I associate myself with, or whose conduct and work, I promote on my private and social platforms. For example, I will not endorse an artiste, whose songs are full of lewdness because he sang one tract, which promotes prayer or inspiration as a campaigner against child physical, emotional and sexual abuse. If I can endorse one so-called inspirational song in an album full of lewd songs or in the signing or acting career of an artiste, known for his/lewdness, I have endorsed all of the rest of the music or movies. Therefore my endorsement has become counterproductive to the cause I represent spirit, soul and body.

I think it is important we note the following:
1. That children determine the people, whose value they want to model by the introduction of the primary and secondary caregivers, whose judgment they trust as authority figures.
2.  Children do not only follow the music or movies of an artiste for example, they follow their lifestyle, believing that the lifestyle is the key to the secret of the success, which the caregiver admires and introduce to the children.
3. Ben Carson and Maria Montessori have proven to us that children have what we call absorbent minds, which aids a fast process of socialization, which in turn form their personality or what we call their psychology.

It is not every star, who is star of positive values or who is a success story by virtue of the fact that he/she is popular. It is also not every story or their tellers that children should be exposed to. Their minds are too absorbent to be subjected to unwanted and unhelpful materials and character, represent the very opposite of the character traits, we seek to inculcate into our precious children. This is not a moral issue but it is an issue of what is appropriate for children.
Permit me to say most profoundly that the means of popularity, does not justify the end of positive or appropriate value impartation. It does not matter who is committing this awful anomaly, be it international or local organisations, we must stand up and raise a standard by ensuring that we do not promote same on our platforms and we raise a standard of advocacy against same.

Sense of mission demands that in all that we do, we must place as our standard and goal, THE BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD.

I am Taiwo Akinlami and I am Sober on my knees on the LORD’s Day.

Advertisements

Child Protection and Preparation for Marriage Fundamental Issues Couples MUST Consider before marriage to achieve raising PROTECTED children

The stories of triumphs or defeat, the joy or sorrows of today’s adult is a glorious or inglorious summation of the MANAGEMENT or MISMANAGEMENT of his/her CHILDHOOD in the hands of his/her INFORMED or IGNORANT primary and secondary caregivers.
 
It is important to note that the family/marriage presents the most viable platform for CHILDHOOD MANAGEMENT or MISMANAGEMENT. Gary Chapman submits in his book, The Four Seasons of Marriage: ‘all RESEARCH indicates that an INTIMATE MARRIAGE provides the SAFEST and MOST PRODUCTIVE CLIMATE for raising children.’

Our society today seems to pay little or no attention to the foregoing reality and in most cases when we pay attention to same we begin to do so after couples have joined themselves together in holy matrimony.

We think matters, relating to CHILDHOOD PROTECTION must be one of the matters to be carefully considered to lay proper foundation for the effective MANAGEMENT of CHILDHOOD before parties decide the dotted lines of the marriage contract.
 
As there are fundamental personal and collective issues for couples to consider before they take the decision to marry, so also are issues fundamental issues relating to having, raising and PROTECTING children, which couples must take time to carefully identify, painstakingly address and find credible answers to before they get married. We believe that the decision to get married should not be taken without the foregoing exercise. It is important to note that except about-to-marry couples engage in the foregoing exercise, they are not  in anyway ready to raise and PROTECT children. And if they are not ready, they are bound to abuse the children under their care and MISMANAGE CHILDHOOD.
 
Therefore, this program, which holds on Saturday, June 13, 2015 seeks to help intending couples to carefully identify, painstakingly address and find credible answers to the issues of CHILDHOOD PROTECTION before they get married. The foregoing is demanded by the best interest of the child, understanding that the number one responsibility of every caregiver is to protect the child.

As I remain sober on my knee today, I humbly invite intending, young  and old couples,  with children, who are advance in age, pre-marriage and marriage counselors, singles ministers and other people to register for this all-important program and also attend same.  It is also important to note that we are available to share these program as an in-house arrangement to your singles and intending couples in your religious places of worship and other related places.

I look forward to your registration and ultimate participation as we collectively seek watertight Protection for the CHILDHOOD of our precious African Children. Do have an INSPIRED week.

Taiwo Akinlami
234-8033-620-843
http://www.taiwoakinlami.com

IT IS 1.55AM…TUESDAY, MAY 12, 2015…THIS IS MY LAMENTATION…PLEASE READ FOR IT MAY INTEREST YOU…I REALLY THINK IT MAY…

I live in a country blessed by God…

Yet, forsaken by all of its inhabitants…

Who think change begins from the Rock, called Aso and not from within us…

Who point fingers of accusation to all except himself or herself…

In this land there are no citizens, there are only survivalists…

There are no jungles, in human history, which boast of citizenship except in the Third World Africa for in the jungle there are only the predator and the prey and not citizens…

The jungle vision is ‘everyone to himself and God for us all’ and the mission is ‘survival of the fittest’ and the leading core value is mutual denial and deception…

This is the land you were born and live in and yet you do not know its nature…

Or you live in denial of it…

Where noise, borne out of anger is our greatest expression of social change…

Therefore, we agonise but we never organise…

Where opportunism is the unsung soundtrack of many personal agendas, cloned social interventions…

Where our social sight is deemed and we are rob ourselves, vigilance, the price of liberty…

Where the historically built tricycle of social warfare runs on one weak leg of convenient propaganda, having been decapitated of its two main legs, intelligence-strategy-tactics and on-the-ground battle engagement…

Where frustration is written on the core heart of many, yet hope is given wide expression on the surface that is not beyond the face…

Where rat race, with its dividend of ‘living-from-hand-to-mouth’ share common meaning with career pursuit in the Third World customised dictionary of dignity of labour…

Where we call on God to do for us what He already empowered us to do before the world began…

Where religion has become the opium, anaesthesia which numbs the pain when we are put through the surgery of social robbery…

Where we look abroad, named international community for all of our salvation, without considering that free launch is yet to exist even in Freetown, just released from the firm grip of Ebola…

Where the best expression of public will is to bring out our thumbs, mostly uninformed, once in four years with a premature shout of uhuru as we lay down vigilance at the door steps of social naivety…

It is now 3.22 AM, my time, I mean Nigerian time, no, not your African time, I am about to put to sleep my generator, who is now overworked since it took over this shift from its fellow colleague, not PHCN, another generator and my family and I will sweat it through the rest of the night…

Do you ask me why? Are you not an inhabitant of this space? Are you not aware of the face-off between the predators of the land and the butchers of its oil, christened, marketers, which leaves the preys trekking from all corners of the land to see the newly elected man in the exalted city of Abuja? Though, the man has been receiving them…I am not sure he is receiving their message that self-imposed suffering is an expression solidarity in the jungle…

Please, I will not allow this argument to rob me the rest of my fuel…It is rationed with a written time-table and the generators already sounded a note of warning. I understand its frustration because by our time-table, the generator should have been put to sleep by 12 midnight for it is likely to resume work by 5.30am, giving it at least 5 hours sleep as recommended by sleep doctors as the minimum an overworked adult should sleep.

Permit me to say to you fellow inhabitants that our souls is the soul of our nation and our destiny is in our hands and until we decide to actually put our collective destiny in our hands, under God, the saga continues and sadly our children already smell it…

Oh my God!!! The generators just went off on its own…You see, writing this whole piece is a distraction after all…A distraction to the family commonwealth of rationed fuel…Is this a cost or curse to the cause of nation building? I doubt o! And even if it is, what do I explain to my wife in the morning? Hmmm, that I used our treasure to write this lamentation, for which no one will surely pay me or may not even read?…Lord, I pray against family tensions…Please join me in earnestly prayer o…I beg you…I hope our prayers will assuage the impact of my downright foolishness before my ‘darlingly’ gentle and understanding wife…

I am Taiwo Akinlami and I am sober about this now that my cruse of oil just failed…Sorry, my cruse of gold is just spent and I have a lot of explanations to make to the family…

Well, in all things, I am enjoined to give thanks…That is the only reason I can wish you an INSPIRED morning now…Do have an INSPIRED day.