The sensational rumors that were in school from previous set groups who participated in the program was to steadfast not to partake in. I have always had a star attraction for adventure. I suppose what caught my attention was the Duke of Edinburgh award enabling each participant to explore a whole new environment as one of the sections of the award demands it. Fortunately, I was able to complete my adventurous journey before the pandemic took its toll on everyone.
There have been numerous challenges towards the achievement of the award such as; the inability to go to the gym for my physical section, the social distancing rules accommodated to curb the spread prevent me from actively meeting people to fix problems in the society, and so many restrictions in place to curb the spread. Although these were quite the obstacles, Oprah Winfrey once said ‘Challenges are gifts that force us to search for a new center of gravity. Don’t fight them. Just find a new way to stand.’
The Duke of Edinburgh award has enabled me to set a target and actively work towards it irrespective of the future obstacles that may be arduous. The award demanded a new perspective of completion from me due to the pandemic’s toll. It immediately came to my notice that the most influential thing at this very time is ‘information’. By passing around some descent important information I could achieve some of my goals as well as improve the environment. The least thing I could do was to go about talking or spreading rumors concerning the pandemic as that will not do anything but instill fear. So I decided to to talk about or shed more light on something Nigerians don’t really pay attention to, proper disposal of waste.
The polluted rivers and littered streets encouraged me to pursue this. Such a social problem like this cannot be solved with just a few words or even in a day. So I decided to at least pursue this objective in my neighborhood. I created posters and pasted them at different places for enlightenment whilst encouraging people to use garbage trucks for the proper disposal of their waste. The voluntary section was the most important part of the award for me as I was able to give back to the community and impact a number of people as a whole.
My skills and physical recreation were quite hostile but important in spite of the circumstances due to my inability to interact with others. I improvised by using a
drum pad to perfect my wrist flexibility, perseverance and speed on the drums while consistently watching and learning new drum skills from YouTube. I was able to also burn those extra calories I got at home from staying indoors all day long. It took a lot of energy to wake up at 6 in the morning just for jogging and stretch poses. It was tiring but it was absolutely worth it. The award has kept me on my toes by simply pushing me to do more in ways that will benefit me and the society.
My perception of the award was changed due to the pandemic but I guess the whole point of the journey was to see how, we as individuals can look into the world identify the need to learn or do something and act upon it. As I round up, I would like us all to ponder on this quote by Alan Watts ‘The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.’
Olashore International School