Oprah Winfrey: Powerful, Selfless & Giver of Dignity!
By Paul Adujie
Thursday, 17 May 2007
Oprah Winfrey: Powerful, Selfless & Giver of Dignity!
By Paul I. Adujie
New York, United States
Asserting the fact that Madam Oprah Winfrey is rich and powerful, is, stating the obvious. Fortunately, she has deployed and continues to deploy, her immense wealth, good fortune and the profound powers that flows from it all, for the attainment of our common good!
Madam Oprah Winfrey’s wealth, powers, and, in particular, the uses to which she has put them, are of interest to millions of people worldwide, including my humble self. In a very materialistic and shallow world, in a world where those who climb with the metaphorical ladder, are all too quick to throw and deprive of others of ladders, Madam Oprah Winfrey’s charitable works are unequalled!
The very many persons and causes that she has helped and supported, so selflessly, the many good things she has done, and the many more good things, which she said, she will continue to do, are all testament to the absolute goodness of this gentle giant of a lady!
It may interest you, that Madam Oprah Winfrey grew up in most humble household and settings. It may also interest you to know that she is the self-made richest woman in the world, bar none! She rose from rose from poverty and a troubled youth to become the most powerful and influential woman, all this, despite a childhood growing up in abject poverty! She has put a new zest and umph! into inspiration and self-improvement for all
She has broadened the horizons of many, by introducing them to good books, among such books, otherwise obscure masterpieces.
She is a supremely confident woman without arrogance. She is a woman, who did not always have such confidence in her abilities, her own beauty, her own gait and her own life’s endless possibilities! Her accomplishments and countless achievements speak for themselves. She inspires all, she is an awe inspiring woman for all the world! She has broken through all barriers of gender, race, geography and wealth!
Madam Oprah Winfrey, is an icon, a human treasure of immutable proportions and magnitude! And from whichever angles one chooses to assess her, she has touched and she continues to touch many lives. She is unique, as she is a spectacular achiever person.
I have always wondered why those with the good, tender and generous heart, with willingness to do public good, never seem to have the fortune!
But now, I have Oprah! She has poured hundreds of millions into selfless charity work!
I have always admired her. My admiration for her increased monumentally, upon my discovery of her school project for girls in South Africa. The project’s projected benefits, will outlive her life time by a factor of a hundred life times, replicated by the 152 girls, who are the first beneficiaries. Multiplied by the beneficiaries’ offspring’s great grandchildren! And, Oh how I wish this grand dame is pursuing projects in Nigeria!
I think it, most outstanding! that Oprah started her school project in South Africa, without loud announcements, and without proclamations! She went about this ground breaking project, in a quiet manner. This unannounced pursuit, of such audacious and unique project, added a spectacular and exquisite quality to the entire charitable endeavors.
This is quite unlike the usual loud diagnoses and equally loud and screaming promises of charity to Africans, by some others, loud diagnoses and pronouncements, which quite often not met with equal zeal, either because these promises were never meant in the first place, or, such were never pursued with any dedication and commitment. This is often the treatment that is repeated for Africans, in times of crises, such as war, famines induced by droughts, or acute pandemics such as AIDS or some other crises in healthcare. Eloquent speeches are made, diagnoses are announced, but, measurable results are never seen embarked upon or undertaken!
Africans are also quite familiar with phony charities, who receive monies and other resources in the name of Africans, but most of these charities actually have no presence or positive effect on Africa and any connection with Africans! There are other instances as well, where 80% or money of amounts donated to some charities, is devoted by these charities to their own benefits in first class flights and accommodations, and never to true charity work of benefit to Africans and Africa.
Africans are equally aware of others, who pay lip service, to issues African. And those who prefer to blame the victims, the African victims, at times of crises! But who would go above and beyond, when similar crises occur elsewhere, other than in Africa. Such as, for example, where food is dropped from 35,000 feet for Afghans, Iraqis and the peoples of Kosovo, Serbia and Montenegro, but no such luck for the peoples of Liberia, Sierra Leone, Darfur or the Congo!
Madam Oprah Winfrey is the most respectful and most gracious giver, and benefactor alive. Imagine spending forty million dollars quietly, and for the benefits of strangers? Imagine sinking so many millions of dollars into a project to benefit young girls from whom Oprah does not expect to receive financial reward or recompense?
Her charitable work and selfless giving is well-known, many of which are documented. But the idea that she gives so much of herself, her time and her wealth without gaudy pronouncements, and self-serving adverts, as some donors are wont to do, makes her, most admirable and even most endearing. She frequently mentions charities that do good works. She too has a charity, known as the Angel Network. She is an angel, the ANGEL!
Imagine that she initiated and pursued, the school project in South Africa as if clandestine! She contracted to construct and equip a most modern school for young South African girls, all the while, keeping it under wraps! She spent a lot of money, spent a lot of time in South Africa, she expended her energies and sacrificed her personal conveniences to make the dreams of these 152 young girls and generations after them, come true! She took all her actions quietly. This quiet pursuit of such a remarkable project, is an added attribute and quality, to her selfless and unassuming public spirited works.
Madam Oprah Winfrey have been known to always engage in charitable works without making any offensive spectacles of the recipients of her largesse. She is someone who identifies a hungry person, she then proceeds to prepare a meal to tackle the obvious hunger, but without announcing her plans with bullhorns, even though, Madam Oprah Winfrey is herself the embodiment of world-reach broadcasting, she could have very easily, deployed her media reach to let the world know about her school project in South Africa, even before it got off the drawing board! She chose not to, even though she has the world, literarily, at her finger tips! What a lady!
She is in essence, letting her gargantuan efforts speak independently, and without recourse to megaphones, and theatrics, this, even though she had megaphones at her beck and call!
She is the epitome selflessness! She is the true meaning of power, strength and good sense. Madam Oprah Winfrey is a benefactor that brings dignity to the beneficiaries of her charitable giving, both through her giving and the very respectful process she employs!
The more that I have thought about Madam Oprah Winfrey and her tireless efforts, the more that I have come to realize that the long-awaited African Renaissance, the salvation, the redemption of Africa and peoples of African descents, will be made possible by our women. Think Oprah, and in Nigerian perspectives, Think Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Think Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, Think Dr. Dora Akuyili, Think Nenadi Usman, Think Ms. Ifueko Omoigui and our other notable uncountable ladies, who overachievers!
Madam Oprah Winfrey, please know it, that South Africans are grateful to you, for the edifice, monument and shinning examples in selflessness, that you have laid for girl-child education. All Africans and peoples of African descent, are delighted to have you and claim you, as one of us, our own! We thank you for your excellent works. We thank you!
History is my witness, as history has shown, all too often, all too frequently, we are, all, that we truly have.