By Emiko Perea
In Nigeria, youth violence and drug abuse are among the leading causes of death and mental instability for the young people of the country. In February, the Global Peace Foundation (GPF) Nigeria, in collaboration with Voice and Aspiration on Women in the Society (VAWS), organized training on Mental Stability and Peacebuilding to raise awareness on mental health issues, particularly as relates to stability and peace in the community.
During her welcoming remarks, Director of VAWS, Tabitha Michael Kogi, said that the theme of the training was based on societal problems that have been causing depression among Nigeria’s young people. She called on the government and stakeholders to come together to help alleviate this growing problem.
The Country Director of GPF Nigeria, Reverend John Joseph Hayab, explained that mental instability among the youth was holding the country back from its potential. He called for the youth to aim to make a living and use their God-given talents to benefit all of their future. Rev. Hayab appealed for the participants to see themselves as one family:
“We should in all circumstances be our brothers keepers so that - together - we can move forward as a people [created] by one God.”
Professor Ishaya Auta, a Professor from Kaduna State University, thanked the directors and the Global Peace Foundation Nigeria for their efforts to ensure the health and peaceful coexistence among youth. He urged the youth to become “Ambassadors of Peace” who would put the words of the speakers into practice.