“Why did you start The Perspective Movement?”
This stomach-twisting question constitutes the most painful part of running this social movement. In answering it, I slip into long periods of self-reflection and mental isolation. Only one year after starting this social movement, I find that the mental picture I have formed of my future revolves around the development of my country—and thus of the movement.
It is out of necessity, and not of desire that I respond to this question. I cringe at the very prospect of having to explain to my fellow countryman, the logic and reasoning behind my belief that our country can be refined into the diamond that it is.
I understand how to create a credible argument—facts, statistics, anecdotes and expert opinions. Throw a logical progression of ideas into the mix and you can sway any audience. But for fear of bad-belle people out there, I reserve my intellect for my homework. It’s a rather simple approach honestly, but this is my usual response:
“Imagine the can-be’s.” It is vague but it does a firm job in striking at least most of the people I encounter. Allow me to paint you a picture I see, when I think of a “can-be”:
I manage to limp out of a painful mathematics class. I slide into the cafeteria after investing much effort, and my tired eyelids are pushed open by the mouth-watering scent of various traditional foods. My mind is strongly stimulated by the sight. I see the steam glide off the crispy, freshly roasted 'suya' as the lunch-lady flips the stick. The smoky scent of the designer 'jollof' rice freshens the air around me, plunging me into a deep mood of 'jollof'. And the spicy chicken seems to sing as the oil drips off golden-brown plantain as it is elegantly dished onto my plate. This is a can-be. It’s a can-be of unity in our ethnic diversity that is preserved through the menu. It is a can-be of cultural awareness, and sustainability in our choices. It is a can-be of the very values our great nation was founded on—unity, peace and progress.
Thus, The Perspective Movement is a society of youth who not only believe in these can-be’s, but also work to make them reality. We started off as a group of writers, and are now growing a network of young entrepreneurs. We write to illuminate the beauty in our can-be’s, and to inspire others to act on them. And then, we innovate. With entrepreneurs in fashion, catering and every field imaginable, we look to re-integrate powerful elements of Nigerian culture, as well as sustainable practice to inspire a developed, “Re-Nigerianized” Nigeria.
What we need now is youth. We need teenagers who share and believe in our perspective to contact us. We look to promote and work alongside young entrepreneurs to re-brand Nigeria, and re-brand the Nigerian youth. In this chain reaction, every effort is invaluable.
TeenzTalk's Blog is here to amplify youth stories and perspectives on topics including personal challenges, self-care practices, initiatives in their community, and more.