All-ages team: BAA members Fr Constantine Osuchukwu, Dr Michael Akindeju with Bunmi, Lunorphare Folly and Joy Sawiche Juma at the Ballarat Welcome Centre. Photo: EDWINA WILLIAMS

Personal development for BAA membership

June 11, 2020 BY

FIFTY thousand dollars has been injected into the Ballarat African Association from the State government, to fund workshops designed to boost the holistic human development of its members.

BAA president, Dr Michael Akindeju said 10 workshops will be aimed at about 250 people across its spectrum of 300 active members, to improve their self-esteem and confidence.

“Some of our programs will focus on strengthening family relationships, inter-generational and respectful communications, mental health, and avoiding gambling,” he said.

For Dr Akindeju and BAA, the African community’s major problems include poor branding and identity, so the workshops are a way to assist them to “participate and integrate fully” into society.

“We thought we would first target self-development, time management, task management, understanding the fabric of the economy, and tax, social justice and electoral systems.

“We’ll treat ourselves first, and then request or solicit for the wider community to understand the value that we actually contribute,” he said.

Member for Wendouree, Juliana Addison said the State government is working to ensure regional community groups like BAA have the resources they need throughout the current challenging climate, and beyond.

Hosting BAA at parliament earlier in the year, she experienced the community’s “strong advocacy.”

“It’s groups like the Ballarat African Association that government is always happy to support,” she said.

Dr Akindeju said BAA has worked hard to plan and achieve the workshop program.

“We want to thank the government. We are grateful to them, they see our plights, understand what we’re going through and they’re partnering with us,” he said.