BORN IN AFRICA
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT US
Hope for the Village Child Foundation began its work in Chikun Local Government in 1994, though it only got its official name in 1996 when it was registered with the Kaduna State Government. It was founded by Mrs. Margaret Mama as a response to the lack of schools and primary health care in areas in proximity to the Jacaranda Farm, Pottery and Restaurant, a primary occupation of the Mama Family. Mrs. Mama was able to set up the NGO, which was involved in primary health care, assisting communities with school facilities and water wells, and caring for children affected by rickets. (For more history, go here.) She managed the organization until the year 2000 when she and her husband, Dr. Eli B. Mama, returned to England. By that time Hope for the Village Child was well established. Mrs. Mama had also received some funding toward a permanent clinic on the site donated by Dr. and Mrs. Mama. From the gift the organization has grown to what it is today.
We espouse the following ethical principles:
PRIMACY OF PEOPLE
Development is a humanizing process, built on the belief that people themselves have the power to transform their lives with the help of others, not by domination. People are the subjects, not objects of development.
PEOPLE INCLUDE WOMEN
Women are to be seen as equal partners to the men in development. Culturally specific resources must be made available to both.
SPONTANEITY AS OPPOSED TO FIXED OBJECTIVES
It is not possible to put life into a box. Allow for unexplained qualitative changes, and celebrate surprises.
WE ARE NEVER ALONE
Every action, every movement, every idea has a corresponding effect on something else. It is important for development workers to ever keep that in mind.
AUTONOMY RATHER THAN CONTROL
As much as possible, responsibility should be invested in the people. Allow people to have freedom to choose; do not try to control or manipulate their response.
STRUCTURAL AS WELL AS PHYSICAL
There must be a clear understanding that there are structural causes underlying under-development. These must be analysed and details must be taken into account so that factors militating against participation can be recognized.
The knowledge of the people is equally as important as the ‘experts’ knowledge. There is a relationship between knowledge and power, and development must be sensitively done so as not to be hijacked by the ‘professionals’.
DEVELOPMENT IS LONG-TERM AS OPPOSED TO SHORT-TERM
Looking for immediate results can destroy development because development is organic.
LOCAL ACTION AS OPPOSED TO LOCAL RESPONSE
Encourage people to determine their actions rather than only respond to directed action. Encourage them to be proactive rather than reactive.
THE EARTH IS WORTHY OF SUPREME RESPECT
We get our life from the earth. All development must consider its effect on the earth.
RESOURCES ARE GIFTS FOR THE FUTURE
Resources are given in trust, whether from the earth or from within the human community. Therefore respect for all that is given is a high priority. They are the gifts passed on to the future.
YOUTH ARE THE FUTURE
The well-known proverb states that we do not inherit from the past but we borrow from the future. With that in mind, we encourage the development of the inherent gifts of children and youth in order that they may have a fulfilling future.