Dickson Eyinmosan Jnr. still recalls his first day of school and the uncertainty and possibility the day brought.
“Walking past the school gate reminded me of how sad it was to leave home for the first time,” Dickson says. “But I took solace in the fact that I really wanted to meet new friends, learn new things and, most especially, play outside. The feeling was nostalgic, and the memories it left behind, fond.”
Dickson, a course facilitator at Philanthropy University, is working today to share his skills with others and advocate for a freer, fairer society.
As he sees it, the topic of women’s rights is particularly apt, given the longstanding gender inequalities he witnessed growing up in Nigeria.
“The topic was, for me, a no-brainer,” Dickson says. “It was time to talk about the mistreatment of women and girls, what little is being done, and what we as young leaders can do to advocate for women’s rights.”
Using the YALI Network Online Course Understanding the Rights of Women and Girls, Dickson led a YALILearns session on the topic and on the role his peers could play in advancing equality.
“If we are going to create a sustainable world, we have to start with the gender imbalance,” Dickson says.
In planning his session, Dickson found reviewing the course transcript especially helpful. He used it to structure and prepare his presentation. To this, he encourages his peers to be creative, particularly if last-minute, logistical challenges arise.
“I would urge others to organize virtual YALILearns sessions,” Dickson says, referring to the global COVID-19 pandemic. “If we are going to be changemakers, it behooves us to do the right thing.”
Over the course of his session, Dickson was struck by the enthusiasm of his participants, who, in his estimation, seemed interested in learning not just about women’s rights, but also their role in upholding them.
“As someone whose passion for grassroots development knows no bounds, I look forward to structuring a change in my community,” Dickson says. “I envision a society where every individual wants to contribute and to create a brighter future.”
“That’s what a perfect world is: A world where human beings aren’t defined by their color, race, or creed,” Dickson says. “It’s a world where religion, politics, and ethnicity do not divide. It’s a sustainable world.”
Interested in leading your own session? Learn more about the virtual options available to you on our YALILearns page.
The views and opinions expressed here belong to the author or interviewee and do not necessarily reflect those of the YALI Network or the U.S. government.