It’s been ten years of solid impact, of building new knowledge and of providing levers for steering policy and systemic reforms. SPACES FOR CHANGE | S4C started in May 2011 as an online discussion forum on Facebook social networking site with an objective to provide a coordinated platform for young Nigerian professionals to engage in informed debates about social and economic policies and programs in Nigeria. It capitalized on the accessibility of the social media to promote civic participation, especially of young people in democratic governance, while reinforcing the philosophy of youth engagement in critical issues bordering on economic justice, housing and urban development, environmental justice and national security. Tapping the volunteer resources and professional networks developed in the online community, S4C was registered in March 2012, and has since then, transitioned from a Facebook discussion group into a highly-respected advocacy organization with two offices in Lagos and Owerri, Imo State. S4C has a five-member board with a healthy balance in favor of women. All board members are renowned experts in diverse fields: medicine, law, energy & human rights.
In the last ten years, S4C has been reputed for leading rigorous research investigations characterized by in-depth analytical quality and objectivity. S4C’s research action majoring on the organization’s four major thematic areas—energy, civic space, gender inclusion and housing matters—have exposed human rights injustices as well as the gaps between policy and practice and proffered forward thinking and reflective recommendations that have formed the basis for sectoral advocacy, policy development and reforms, media analysis, business and investment decisions.
S4C’s journey tells a compelling story of the transformation of raw passion into a powerful tool for social change. Ten years ago, we created a dream that demanded strength, dedication and purpose. The rigorous researches, policy analysis, legislative engagements, online exchanges, stakeholder alliances and public advocacy we have done in the past eight years represent both a glimpse of that dream, and a peep into the future of the organization. With the deepest joy and excitement, we are very proud of the many and great tasks we have accomplished in a short time. The greatest of our achievements is the growing number of passive citizens, especially the youth and marginalized populations we work with, who have suddenly found their voice, and now firmly understand that they are active participants in decision-making and nation building.
The Board and Staff of S4C are grateful to its numerous partners, donors, volunteers, allies, corporations, networks and supporters online and offline for buying into the organization’s vision, supporting its core mission over the years, and walking together with us to become stronger and achieve greater milestones. Without you, there is no us. Although a lot has been done, we reognise that more work lie ahead. And together with all of you, we must trudge forward, ever hopeful of a better tomorrow.