Home » 26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

by Abbey Lily
26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

-Odunayo Ajani

26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

26-year-old NGO Founder gives back to Women and Children in Abuja

In this exclusive interview granted Dailyfamily, Rita Charles, Founder of Ritigreat Foundation a Non-Governmental Organization based in Abuja tells of her passion for the women folks, children and her quest to stand out as a creature created for a reason. Also in this interview, Rita talked about the recent sanitary pad distribution to some young women in secondary schools in Abuja.

Good evening, can we meet you, please?
In the purview of the previous introduction, I am Rita Charles a native of Abia state. The fourth born, second female in a family of six and 26-year-old. I am a graduate of Public Administration, Chattered in Administration, marketing and public relations. Plus, I am a born again Christian.

We have heard about Ritigreat Foundation and of some of your social involvements to better lives in Nigeria, most especially of women and children. Can you explain in details what this Ritigreat foundation is all about?

Ritigreat Foundation is an initiative that was registered March 2017. It was born out of my experience and desire to make a difference in life. Ritigreat Foundation discovered that the rate of poverty in Nigeria is on a high side hence the reason we step up to the needs, for instance the sanitary pad project. We are Also looking at sending drop out children whose parents can’t afford basic education back to school, this can be achieved with the help of our sponsors. We know we can’t reach the whole world, but at the moment, we are focusing on our local communities here in Abuja.

 

Can you please tell us about the Sanitary pad Project?

According to the World Bank report, a lot of Nigerians live below $1 a day and the cost of sanitary towels is on a high side, and yet the cost of a pad is  N400. Sex is a choice yet condom is cheap and most times subsidized. Menses is not a choice and the cost of a pad is high. We thought that if we could bridge that gap if we could provide sanitary towels for those ladies in rural areas who can’t afford it they would be grateful. We also discovered that a lot of ladies in rural areas used unhygienic means to pad themselves during menstruation and this result to a lot of health issues in the long run so I decided that if we could train this ladies on better hygienic means and give them the right menstrual and sexual education, we would have averted many health hazards, and we thought, if this sanitary towel is distributed regularly to this sect of underprivileged women then they will have a lot to be grateful for. The cost of this pad is what we looked at, and decided to be the one to give them this solution.

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But research gathered reveals that there are pads less expensive. So how do you juxtapose this with what your foundation has embarked upon?

The least pad you can get is N300.
We did our research well before embarking on those projects. Once we are able to touch enough lives, we plan to spread. So we liaise with this sanitary towels organization and get the pad at a discount rate and then distribute to our target beneficiaries.

Still with you Rita. Your foundation seems to have focused more on the women folk or simply the girl-child. Why have you prioritized it this way?

Yes, we are focused on women and children because it’s where I found my passion and can contribute to the society. We had to discover our nitch. The women and children in our society are most vulnerable. We have discovered that the world we are is the world that empowers the male folks and most females and children are left to the mercies of this harsh decisions. So we decided to help this sect stand out and provide the needed help.

 

Can you tell our readers how many projects you have done for women and children and if possible, list them?

We have done several projects. Early this year we gave up to 300 children sandals to go back to school with. We realized most rural school children go to school barefooted. Another school we gave umbrellas and raincoat to inhibit them from saying rain stopped me from going to school. March, we partnered with Devatop center for Africa for an advocacy programme to stop female genital mutilation at kuje, a local Government in Abuja. May, we had a programme at GSS kuje where over 500 sanitary towels were freely distributed to female students. They were trained on the right sexuality and menstrual hygiene management. We also distributed pad to female prisoners this month. This last project was our most recent and the pictures are not yet out. I misplaced my phone and Ipad last week, most pics and videos are gone. I am just making do with the ones my sister took with her phone.
Any other question?

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Yes. Interestingly you have done quite much in giving back to your world, so how have you been getting support in forging ahead in such a demanding but rewarding humanitarian course. What has been your greatest motivation so far?
Sponsorship comes from me. Personal savings and salary. Until I became well structured and started writing to individuals and organisations. So many believed in the vision and supported. Some of my board of trustees played a great role.
You mean from ‘you’ right?
Yeah from me. All my savings were going to programs recently so many good people started supporting me. My greatest motivation is my past. I didn’t have my needs met while growing up so if God has blessed me now, I think he should be someone else’s solution. I should give back to a society that has invested into my life. My greatest joy is to see people happy making difficult situations possible, putting smiles in people’s face, and seeing the girl-child empowered. I was born into a humble background, almost all my school days were by scholarships. My dad didn’t have to give me all I needed. So I felt there are many out there who can’t afford as I wasn’t able to.

 

What is your advice for young girls, women and individuals who are out there? How will you encourage them to greatness?
My advice for any young person out there is to remain focused, believe in the destiny and dream God has put in your heart, the world can only stop someone that has been defeated in his mind. But if you square your shoulders and believe that you are what God says you are, then you are in for a great future.

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