Wednesday, 11 January 2017

UDUAK-OBONG JACKSON: WRITING AGAINST SUICIDE

Uduak-obong Jackson
Image: Uduak's Facebook Profile
We are amazed by the awesomeness that is Uduak-obong Jackson.

Uduak-obong is from Akwa Ibom state, Nigeria. She is a creative Writer and spoken word Poet. She is a graduate of Nassarawa State University where she studied Sociology.

As the first child (and only girl) in a family of six, Uduak learned responsibility and empathy for the struggles that mired the lives of many people. Though her experiences – from family, friends and school – were simple and for the most part, fun, Uduak knew there was more to life than what she was experiencing. As if to reinforce her thoughts, someone in her neighborhood committed suicide.

‘I used to think suicide was something that never happened in this part of the world but to my surprise, sometimes last year, a young guy killed himself in my area. It was really shocking because no one would expect that from an average Nigerian.’


Uduak began to do some research and realized that ‘there has been numerous cases of suicides in the country and most times no one says a thing about it.’ That was when she made up her mind to talk about it. 


Uduak started the #iWriteAgainst campaign where she discussed varying issues. She has been campaigning about the issues that predispose young people to suicide, with focus on the need to discuss mental health and suicide prevention. She knew that it was a huge task and doing it alone was almost impossible. Uduak then asked friends to support the campaign. The response was massive! People from everywhere – family, friends, acquaintances and even people she didn’t know – quickly joined the campaign and sent out pieces using the hashtags, #iWriteAgainst and #iWriteAgainstSuicide.



Her biggest hope was that the campaign would be effective in reaching people who had suicidal thoughts. She hoped someone would read the posts and be inspired not to take their lives. And it did.

‘I've gotten messages from people telling me how their close friends who were having suicidal thoughts have been bold enough to open up after coming across some of the write-ups from the campaign. I've also had the chance to talk with some who actually attempted suicide.’

Uduak plans to grow the platform into something bigger and more capable of helping people with suicidal thoughts in more ways that writing.

Known by her friends as Slimzy Jackson, she maintains her drive by being simply caring.

We admire Uduak-obong Jackson for her work. She is a black girl and she rocks!
Uduak-obong Jackson
Image: Uduak's Facebook Profile

6 comments:

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