In many parts of the world, coupling road safety with other occasions can offer a great opportunity for partnerships! In this column, Brian talks about joining forces with organizations around a time that they are drawing up their financial budgets and wanting to invest in youth orientated road safety work!
‘Safety is our concern and road safety is our religion! Hate us or love us, we’re African youth and shall keep the safety music not just playing but playing high! That’s a promise that we’re not afraid to make because we shall live up to expectations…’
Hello every one! Bonjour a tous! Your favorite Brian’s Column is back! J If you are reading this, you are alive! Bravo! You have survived the red eye of the bad-ghost of road carnage whose quest for lives on African roads has, since I was born, been hovering around, something that consequently forced you and I to join the road safety army!
I don’t know very much what the Northern, Southern regions of Africa were up to in June, but I am well nformed of the big plans for Western and Southern Africa. It’s not that I got married to someone from West Africa but rather because from 10th June-18th June 2013, I found my way into the 28th First Aid Convention Europe in Wels, Austria and Mechelin, Belgium (Much respects to my sponsors, Uganda Red Cross + Belgium Red Cross).
My visit to Belgium visiting Mr Axl Druart - YOURS' European CORE Group Coordinator
So, while in there, I came to meet one hell of a young man: Responsible Young Driver’s Axl Druart (who I can say is half Belgian & half African, because of his passion for Road Safety in Africa). He was (still is) the brain behind the Youth Caravane that took place in 7 western African countries. After learning about its philosophy and how big the next Caravan will be, I got kind of jealous (God forgive me, please) and since then I managed to persuade and force myself to organize an East African Caravane!
Now, this July, it’s the month of which many organizations and institutions in Africa are beginning plans for a new financial year. That means, without really serving you a lecture of economics, both the public and private partners are trying to plan and harmonize their financial plans. In other words, institutions are looking for ‘partners’ to marry! Many private institutions are looking at how they can get ‘married’ to other institutions to ensure that they (private partners) can have their work impact the local communities. If you think am kidding you (which I only do, when I am serious), visit the communication companies, banks etc as soon as now, and you will confirm your fears that these institutions are scratching their current bald work plans in search of a ‘marriage partner’.
Now, if you or your youth organization is registered and recognized in your country, I dare you to visit and ask them the magical question of give words: ‘Will you marry me, please?’
The ‘Marry me’ trick (I am not trying to be your love doctor here) works on the principle that one of the people intending to marry must be patient enough and hit the nail on the head when the other partner is, seemingly ready to take the relationship to the next level J (hahaha). That’s correct folks! At this time of the year, private institutions are very single, and they need serious relationship with serious partners! There couldn’t be any more serious partner than a road safety institution whose safety plans are inclusive of finger linking forthcoming events like Christmas (I love that season), Independence days (I know of 8 African countries celebrating independence days from now and December (hopefully there are no alien invasions like the film).
Part two and three of the Youth and Road Safety Action Kit focuses on project management and briefings to keep going. These can help you in approaching potential donors, funders and partners to support your projects. Read it online here.
These are platforms where these private partners would love to associate their work with your work, so there you go. Don’t be a scared! Go to your knees and pop the question :P I don’t need to wish you a ‘Good luck’ because the response is a crystal clear ‘YES’. Don’t worry, if the answer is no, the best thing about this proposal is that you can propose it to others too, maybe even a three or four way marriage! The point is, now is the time in Africa!
This is also a request to decision makers to INVEST in young people's road safety! We are the future and we want to play our part. Together, our marriage of partnership can be a strong one!
Until next time, STAY SAFE!