Ladies and gentlemen, it gives me a great pleasure to congratulate you on establishing this association some years ago and watching it become a strong beacon of hope and source of giving back to our alma mater. While, some of us were there at the start, and missing some along the way, we are excited that others have joined us to continue the good work. By design, this association is a big tent for all old students, regardless of their class set and we are glad that we can now boast of old students from 1963 to the 2000s. Meanwhile, the need to give back cannot be over-emphasized and no matter how much we give back, we should remember that some people made it possible for us to get educated at the Baptist High School, Iwo, and we should be happy to do the same for the current students, so that they can also sow the seed and learn the value of giving back. In view of this, I want to thank those who have been supporting this association and our initiatives and to encourage us not to give up in encouraging those that have left to come back and join hands with us, just as we should continue to seek out new members that are scattered around North America. There is joy in giving especially, if the recipients cannot repay you. That’s the philosophy of philanthropy and we should remember that there’s nothing that we have that has not been given to us by someone, somehow, somewhere, be it our parents, guardians, governments, employers, our new home countries and most importantly our maker, who has given us the very breadth and life we now enjoy.
From the inception in 2013 as an idea by a few old students to the inaugural reunion in 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia, the vision has been clearly defined on giving back to our alma mater. That vision remains intact today, having been passed on to us by two previous executives.
And so, let me on behalf of the current executives salute you for the work you’re doing in organizing yearly scholarships for 2 top performing students since 2016. You equally sponsored a summer school in 2017 to prepare JSS2 students for their school leaving exams. With the help of Mr. Kayode Shoneye, our PRO, working with the national body, we have been able to manage these projects and we are grateful for their support. This year, we are looking to renovate the staff building and I want to thank Dr. Femi Rabiu, our vice-chair for leading this initiative. I also thank all the executive members for their efforts in this regard, namely Mrs. Omotosho, Mr. Ojediran, Mr. Shoneye, Mrs. Dada and Mr. Fatumbi. Meanwhile, on behalf of the executive members, I want to seize this opportunity to ask you all to please give generously to this venture. If you have visited the school in recent years, it is an eye sore to see the deplorable state of the buildings and this project is our attempt to make a difference to a place that made us part of who we are today. Let us face it, there are structural and moral failures in a lot of places and for the most part, most of us did not accept the status quo, which is why we are where we are today in our lives, with the help of God. To make a difference of this nature, we need money, especially to do anything meaningful and remarkable. And to echo the calls from our financial secretary and treasurer, we can do better than what we currently do. So, please let all hands be on deck.
Finally, I recall with nolstagia welcoming some of you to the second reunion in Toronto, Canada in 2017 and the great time we had together still remains fresh in my memory. The gala night featured our MC for life, Mr. Ade Ojediran who was phenomenal, not to talk of the prolific one-man live band DJ Babs. The dancing steps of the 70s propelled by music of different genres collided with that of the 2000s to create an action-packed and fun-filled evening for the ages. With this in mind, I want to thank Mrs. Omotosho who is working tirelessly to host us to another great reunion in Laurel, MD, in the last weekend of June 2019.
Thank you all and see you soon!
Dr. F. C. Bamikole.
Chairman. Sosahib NA
2017 – 2019.