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Whenever I’m opportuned to give talk on child psychology, I realize that a lot of Nigerians shouldn’t have kids. They just give birth not because they understand what it means to raise children but because they are expected to reproduce at certain stage and age.

You don’t have to tell me how you live,

You don’t need to tell me who you are,

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I don’t have to ask you the kind of parent you are…

Just show me your child.

Go to a play ground full of kids and you will understand the kind of future we are going to have.

You see bullies amongst children,

You see children who are raised on love,

You’ll see compassionate children,

You see children who discriminate against other kids by their schools, the English they speak or their clothes.

You’ll see the ones speaking out for other bullied children,

You’ll see children who will tell adults  what they are doing is wrong.

These children were molded by their parents.

When a child hears the mom talks down on children who attends government school, they will discriminate against children who attends government schools,

When a child hears the parents talks ill or makes bad jokes about albinism, dwarfs, people living with one form of disability or the other, they will discriminate against these set of people.

When a child sees the parents bullies others, they will also bully others.

When a child sees the parents always correcting things and doing the right thing, they will do same.

Let me share these scenarios .

Traveling by bus in 2005, a buscuit wrap was tossed through the window, a little girl said, “stop littering the country” but there were other buscuits wraps on the floor na; then she said “If there are 50 buscuits papers on the floor, yours will make it 51, that is how another person will make it 52 and before you know, the whole world has buscuits papers on the floor”. The guy was ashamed because they were other adults listening and smiling… and so ladies and gentlemen, a child made me stop littering in 2005 and till date, I don’t do that, I keep trash in my bag until I get home or see a waste bin. I don’t know where that child is today, but raise your children to speak up for what is right.

A neighbor got a kitten in 2018, his neighbor’s 4 years old child came and saw the kitten meowing she carried the kitten and was crying “she is looking for her mommy”.

She promised  that she will take care of the kitten. Whenever she comes back from school, she will come to the neighbor’s house with half of her buscuit she kept for the kitten and then she will say “I’ll take care of you, you hear?”

Teach your children compassion, raise them to care.

My cousin of 10 years chased a dove away from our window instead of killing it, I jumped on top our chair shouting “kill it! Kill it!!” He refused, I asked him why didn’t he kill it, then he said “that’s how people killed all the Dinosaurs on earth, now you want me to kill a dove until all the doves will finish and we will have to go to the zoo to go and look at doves”. I just weak… The boy just turned 18 and is currently studying Vet Medicine. The whole family nicknamed him “Doctor Ant” because he doesn’t kill animals or birds including ants. He chases them away.

Raise your children to speak up for what they care about.

Teach your children to do the right thing even when you’re not there.

Your children are a reflection of you.

Raise your children to speak up for what they care about.

We went to government primary school to run one of our programs. We saw a boy weeping, he said his pen was stolen, we searched the empty class and we saw some pens left by other students, he said they were not his and he wouldn’t take them.

Then another girl of about 11 came with a typical “Nigerian stealing” attitude, “If na me ehn, if my one biro loss, 10 go follow me go house”

This is a case of two children,

One refused to even take the ones left in the class, another one is boasting how she would steal other people’s items to replace hers.

The best way to start correctly changing our social ills is through children!

Health, cultural, religious, moral programs with teachers and other support groups will help alot!

The journey of a thousand miles begin with one step!

Let’s us all do the little we can do- by our action, our hands, our mouth (speech) to change the bad ills of our children and the time is now.

Let all adults develop that thoughts of changing the society for the better!

May Allah make it easy for us! Ameen

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