Creating change does not come on a platter of gold; so one must be ready to face challenges from different angles which could come in different forms. For me, the first challenge is acceptability of change by the community and beneficiaries of the project. This is because when you bring change to the people, they see it as a challenge to their culture and traditions.
Decision makers and some disgruntled politicians also see it as a challenge to their positions and authorities; they tend to frustrate someone who is trying to bring change to the community because they believe that one is indirectly telling them that they are inefficient.
A good example is when we told a traditional leader that we have established a School Based Management Committee (SBMC) in a school in his community; it became a hot argument between us and the government official that was there with us, who felt we are accusing them of inefficiency.
Another challenge is lack of funds; with funds one can do so some many things. Firstly, for now I don’t have steady source of income to subscribe internet connectivity to air my views or blow whistle on some gender issues for discussions online. Furthermore, No matter how small a project is one would definitely need money to implement it, without it I cannot really do much. It is the base on which any project implementation is built upon.
Secondly, I am also faced with the challenge of not having an enabling condition as my children are still young and getting a reliable hand to take care of them without sufficient funds is a herculean task. And the work requires frequent travels to my target communities.
On present solutions to overcoming these challenges, for now, I am having talks with some of the traditional and opinion leaders to sell my idea to them and see how they can buy into the idea. I am equally making an unofficial advocacy to some local politicians on the issue, to make them realize that we are not down-playing or underrating their work but to complement it.
To access the internet sometimes I go to my husband’s office or a friend’s house to surf the internet when my plan expires.
I try to plan my work around my children’s school calendar; i wait for my kids to be on holidays before I can travel, since their grandma lives in the community, so they stay with her while I go for field visits.
To use the PulseWire and other online communities to over these challenges is to post my needs online, learn through shared learning from the work of others. Get information on organizations that are calling for proposals, call for training opportunities, or online trainings opportunities as well as to get resources materials for my work.