By Oswald Agwu
An Abakaliki based socio-philanthropic organisation, the Progressives for Greatness recently took their Valentine’s Day celebration to the St. Vincent De Paul Old Peoples and Destitute Home, Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital.
The group during the occasion donated assorted food items, clothing, cash, among other things to the inmates of the home established by the Catholic Mission.
They also spiced up the celebration with the cutting of the Valentine cake with the inmates.
The group’s President, Mr Okechukwu Mgbada, during the event, explained that Valentine’s Day celebration calls for identifying with the less-privileged in the society.
The president, who is also a member of the Ebonyi state Secondary Education Board (SEB) said that the visit would help change the wrong perception attached to the celebration in the society especially among the youths.
He noted that the most critical aspect was that most youths see it as an occasion to indulge in various forms of sexual immorality thereby increasing the health risks involved in such indulgence.
Mgbada commended the home’s administrators for effectively caring for the inmates in spite of noticeable challenges, and also heralded the hope and commitment shown by the inmates towards enhancing their lives by engaging in various vocational ventures.
He urged the inmates to accept the ‘token’ presented by the group and the administrators to notify it of ‘pressing’ challenges confronting the home, assuring that the home henceforth would be inculcated the group’s activities.
Mgbada said: “Most people see the occasion as a period to show love and affection only to their loved ones or family members without identifying with those who have nobody to take care of them.
“That should not be so because St. Valentine actually risked his life for those he had no filial relationships with.
“I want to commend the hope and commitment shown by the inmates towards enhancing their lives by engaging in various vocational ventures.
“This shows that you are not demoralised by your present condition but have the belief of a better life in the future.”
Vice President of the group, Mrs Adamma Obasi-Dunu urged people to properly understand the celebration’s essence especially among the youths.
“St. Valentine laid his life for others to live and even if your relatives stay away from you on this occasion, we will identify with you,” she encouraged.
The home’s Administrator of the Mr John Lekpa, thanked the Progressives for the gesture, stating that it has given meaning to the inmates’ lives.
Lekpa who prayed for God’s increase upon the Organisation added: “We have never celebrated this occasion in this manner and this shows that this year will be good for us”