From a Passive Citizen to Creative Problem-Solver.

The sight or sound of pregnant women in labour or children in pain due to illness in his hometown he gave up on any hope of progress for his people; he would sometimes help place the affected person on a cycle, barely believing the person will make it to the nearest hospital which was many kilometres away from his hometown. He got fed up with these pathetic scenes and decided to find a lasting solution to the problem. His people’s lives are more precious than the value placed on them by poverty.”I was saddened by their plight. Avoidable situation, but nobody seemed to care!”

On his way to the farm one morning, the sound of tricycles and motorbikes struck a chord in Tijani’s thought. The farm produce carried by these tricycles are thrice heavier than two pregnant women; this means that redesigning of tricycles to feel more comfortable to serve as ambulance is possible. “ I asked myself; what if we converted our tricycles into transportation models to convey sick persons and pregnant women to the hospital within a relatively short period”.

Not long ago, Tijani saw any hope for the suffering in his community, but now it is possible. He just needed to do a little more thinking and everything will be well. “In earlier times, I believed ambulances in my hometown were a mirage; it will take forever for us to get one. Even those closer to civilization in Accra, were complaining all the time about people dying because there were no ambulance”.

Tijani’s desire to solve the problem identified in his hometown, made him develop a model which he believed will be widely accepted in places where there are no ambulance, especially in the Northern region. “It occurred to me that passion is not enough; action makes the difference. I needed training; I needed to understand how to get this done and also, articulate my vision to others who may be in the position to help. I knew Development Communications was the programme I needed to study, when I first heard my close friend talked about it another person”.

It took about two years for Tijani to draw a proposal for his idea. His training in Development Communications made the proposal writing task less difficult. “I did not want anyone to shoot my idea down because I did not sound convincing enough with my writing. This was why enrolled in the African University College of Communications as an undergraduate student. I must say my decision has paid off”.

“Being second runner-up in the maiden Presidential pitch tells me things will get better with healthcare in the rural part of Ghana. I am not going to give up on this project”.

Ahmed Tijani Toyibu is a level 400 Development Communications student of the African University College of Communications.

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