To empower people means to help them have more confidence, to increase their control over situations in life, consequently, to realize that, they can do right things in the proper manner, for their growth and success. Just as many use this expression so must it make sense “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” The experience with the youths and the patron of Kanyanga Parish, for two months; December 2016 and January 2017 proved the second part of these phrase, it was imperative for us, it was educative, enriching and empowering. In a nutshell we were impressed to see youths who are ready to facilitate seminars on their own, concretely investing their energy in digging and weeding, animating mass, visiting the sick and consoling the sorrowful, not entirely because of the presence of their patron but because of the good leadership, empowerment from the patron and the trust he has in them. Sharing with the patron his aim is to continue empowering them and help them to be independent such that when he is not around they know what they are doing.
Many times we think that leadership is all about compelling, instructing and imposing, this is not the case. Our experience with the youths of Kanyanga Parish was a vivid manifestation of the contrary. First, a profound gratitude to the patron who is always with them, participating in their different activities and programmes. In addition, he has played a key role in their manifestation of a sense of
responsibility, such that in his absence activities run as usual. In other words, his is just to direct, theirs is to plan and accomplish. Secondly, the youths are creative in composing and reciting poems. They are available when needed for assistance. They are ready to work, to keep themselves occupied, they also organize charitable activities.
For youths to realize and have a promising future there is need to help them, this is not easy amidst advanced technology and exploitative realities that make others feel they can direct themselves in life. To find a person who has perseverance and trust in them is the first key to prosperity in life. Leadership is participatory; it is being a player in the game, just like a captain of a football team.
By Obwaya Justus Oseko