A Homecoming Like None Other
Nathan Ekwu is a Nigerian born student-athlete at Davidson College who came to the U.S.A 3 years ago to pursue his studies. This summer, Nathan will be traveling back to Nigeria with A2S founder, Andrew Lovedale to assist in empowering Nigerian youth through our free annual basketball, empowerment and summer bible camps. Nathan shares what this trip with A2S means to him beyond getting to spend time with his family.
* * * * * * * What a great feeling know that by this time next week, I will be home in Nigeria. I will not only get to see my family but I also get to do something that my heart has always longed for- to serve. There can be no greater feeling than knowing that I will be giving back because just like many Nigerian youth, I used to be in this similar environment where opportunities are limited. An environment where daring to dream might prove to be scarier than pursuing one. The thought that everything you see around you makes it seem like no matter how much you tried, the promise of a better tomorrow can best be related to as a mere illusion. Not an illusion to those who are strangers to this environment but mainly among those who have been raised in an environment that is enveloped by the cycle of poverty. I finally get a chance to see my peers and the younger generation coming after me, look them in the eye and encourage them that we can do something together to change our environment for the better. To provide a sense of hope and to provide an alternative that encourages a future that is filled with promise.
Three years ago, I was blessed with the opportunity to attend high school in the U.S and will be traveling home as a rising sophomore at Davidson college. The difference between where I am today and where many of my fellow Nigerian youth are can be summed up in one word-Opportunity. Thanks to the opportunities that came my way, I can go back home and share my knowledge as a fellow Nigerian who once walked the path they now walk in, discuss my life as an international student, and encourage them with the lessons I have learned along the way in hopes of helping them overcome the fear of daring to dream like I once did. To share my knowledge of basketball, the importance of respect, humility, hard work, diligence and trust in God’s plan. Very few of us from Nigeria get to travel the path that I have been set on; one in which a combination of grace, talent, knowledge and chance has helped to provide me with a rare platform. When you go through life like I have been through and now have the opportunities I have, it is only fitting that I am not only thankful for it, but that I am excited at every opportunity to give back.
A strong desire to make life better for so many who were born into similar environments like myself has always been at the heart of what drives me. And through the platform of A2S, I finally get a unique opportunity to help inspire the younger generation through basketball and empowerment camps and distribution of athletic and educational supplies. It is my hope that in sharing my blessings and the knowledge that I have been gifted with, the youth will see that they can dare to dream and pursue their dreams no matter what their current environment might look like. Andrew Lovedale and I are living testimonies that dreams do come true and I am excited to join forces with him and the platform of A2S to reach out to Nigerian youth.
To support Nathan’s campaign to help impact the lives of Nigerian youth this summer, please visit his campaign at: https://app.mobilecause.com/vf/SAYTC/NathanEkwu