Wednesday, 25 September 2013

I Will Stay!!! Campaign Flags Off

Spaces for Change is proud to launch its I WILL STAY (IWS) campaign!!! IWS targets young people who are at-risk of engaging in delinquent and negative behavior, with wrap-around supportive services, experience-sharing and strategic mentoring provided freely by S4C Youth Advocates.  Using a combination of direct experience-sharing, counseling, public advocacy, video-viewing, blogging, web-based conferencing and coaching on emotional intelligence, IWS will work to reach young people in time to prevent their involvement in harmful social behaviours that lead to frustration, crime, delinquency and illegal migration. 

Monday, 23 September 2013

Dangote's Private Refinery: The Hopes and Fears

Billionaire business man, Aliko Dangote is proposing to build a $9 billion refinery at the Olokola Free Trade Zone, OK FTZ. If the project succeeds, that would be the first privately-owned refinery in Nigeria, with the potential to create jobs, eliminate subsidies and even spur other businesses in and around where the refinery is sited. 

For over 7 days, members of Spaces for Change-S4C's discussion forum on Facebook social networking site engaged in a very intense debate centered on the viability of the project, elucidating other social and economic concerns surrounding the initiative. Discussants comprised mainly of young Nigerian oil and gas professionals, business analysts, policy advocates, environmentalists, students, journalists and public commentators working in global and national energy-focused institutions and corporations. Concerns ranged from the massive drift towards privatization of public utilities, deregulation of the downstream sector, oil industry monopoly, ineffective regulation of private enterprises, poor maintenance of the existing four refineries, public sector inefficiency, including dearth of legal protection of the rights of the poor to access basic goods and services.  

Spaces for Youth Development and Social Change, (Spaces for Change) works to increase the participation of Nigerian youth, women and other marginalized constituencies in social and economic development and public decision-making. 

Here are excerpts from the conversation:  

Thursday, 12 September 2013

PIB: Getting Everyone Involved!

Famed for its expertise in leveraging technology and using crowd-sourcing and web-based communication tools to promote public awareness and citizen engagement in policy and legislative processes of the Nigerian oil and gas sectors, Spaces for Change (S4C) took good work to scale by launching a vibrant media campaign to improve citizens’ access to information about the ongoing oil sector reforms. Through our media advocacy work, we popularized the Petroleum Industry Bill on the social media and generated extensively publicly available data on a wide range of policy issues affecting the Nigerian oil and gas industry. 

Traditional and new media tools and platforms were utilized to share information and raise public awareness about the Bill, including other economic policies and programs affecting the oil sector. S4C staff featured on several TV programs, radio talk shows and online portals where they presented e-conference outcomes and research findings on specific provisions of the Bill, highlighting areas in urgent need of legislative scrutiny.

Monday, 2 September 2013

The (Uncontrolled) Scramble for Africa’s Resources

By Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri

Over the last decade, the resource curse in Africa has disappointingly showed minimal signs of reversal, no thanks to the store of unmet expectations of developmental progress associated with natural resource finds.  No week passes without the announcement and ensuing celebration of mineral resource discoveries across Africa. These finds have rarely translated to better infrastructure; increased access to education and basic healthcare and other social and economic benefits despite the monstrous profits and the huge revenues generated from hydrocarbon, gas, gold, diamonds and many other mineral resources.
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