OWU Shakepoverty Ambassador Visits Nigeria

Nonprofit founded at Ohio Wesleyan expands to other universities

OWU Shakepoverty Ambassador Tim Goodman ’11 and his new friend Femi look at a water pump during Goodman’s summer visit to Nigeria. (Photo courtesy of Shakepoverty)

OWU Shakepoverty Ambassador Tim Goodman ’11 and Shakepoverty founder Farooq Busari ’10 made major steps forward in helping impoverished people in Africa when they visited the Ikaram Millennium Village in Nigeria during the summer.

“It was an absolutely unbelievable, breathtaking experience,” Goodman says. “You can see first-hand how funds raised through Shakepoverty can affect the lives of the people in this area.” Goodman says he was the first Caucasian some of the people had ever seen, and that the children were fascinated with his red hair.

Busari spearheaded the founding of Shakepoverty in April 2010, believing that “poverty can be ended, not by a handful of people, but with millions of handshakes” and the resulting commitments to help people in need.

While in Nigeria, Goodman and Busari met with various community leaders and groups to see the people’s needs first-hand. They determined that fund-raising to improve sanitation and healthcare will be two major areas of focus for Shakepoverty.

The organization also is raising funds to provide internet access to five hospitals and six primary schools, and it wants to build 2,000 Improved Ventilated Pits (outdoor toilets) by June 2011.

Shakepoverty Foundation board member and internet real estate entrepreneur Dan Daugherty ’01 is among those providing support for the group’s efforts. Daugherty is seeking corporate sponsorships through his blog and through a special donation site.

Goodman says the OWU Shakepoverty group also is planning fund-raising activities that may include bringing a performance artist concert to campus and partnering with an OWU athletics team to raise money at an event.

Next up for Goodman and Busari is a trip to New York City this weekend to attend the Millennium Campus Conference at Columbia University. Busari will make a presentation and oversee focus group activity at this event for young entrepreneurs.

In addition to this activity at Columbia, student-led Shakepoverty groups have been formed at two other universities, and the new chapters are starting their own handshake campaigns to inspire those in their communities to help “shake poverty.” Ife Adedoyin is the ambassador at Cornell University, and Vera Schoeller is the ambassador at Stanford University.

Visit Busari’s Shakepoverty Trip to Ikaram Village Facebook photo album to view pictures from Goodman and Busari’s trip to Africa.

More information about Shakepoverty:

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