All you need to know about NYSC CDs is vital to all prospective corps members who do not want to be taken unawares and corps members who do not want to understand CDs on the peripheral but deeply.
No matter your reason for wanting to understand or be in the know of everything relating to CDs, you are at the right place and this article will satisfy your curiosity and answer all your questions.
What is CDs?
CDs is an acronym that means Community Development Service. It is one of the cardinal programs of NYSC in which corps members contribute positively to the development of their host communities throughout national service.Back to top
1 ) All you need to know about NYSC CDs
It is important to mention that since the creation of the NYSC scheme which is in 1973, the scheme has been making enormous contributions to the economic, political, and social modification in the country.
Recently, it is no longer news that the scheme has been able to correct the imbalance in our rural-urban development. This has been made possible through the various community development programs carried out by corps members.
The areas of education, health care delivery, agriculture, communication, infrastructure, technology, economic empowerment, poverty eradication, social services, and most importantly national awareness and socio-cultural regeneration have now been revolutionized in our communities.
1.1. Objectives of CDs
1. Exposing corps members to diverse traditions and customs of the host communities.
2. Developing the spirit of entrepreneurship in the corps members.
3. Taking advantage of the difficulties rural development presents, to instill in Nigerian youth the values and skills of leadership, perseverance, selflessness, community service, national service, patriotism, and inventiveness.
4. Encouraging the use of local raw materials in project implementation by giving corps members the platform to test out ideas and turn them into tangible accomplishments while relying less on imported technology.
5. Adding value to our national development efforts by ensuring that members of the underprivileged community learn fundamental self-help skills using the appropriate technology idea being promoted by NYSC.
6. To teach corps members the value of hard work and productivity
7. To complement the activities of government at all levels in the stride towards national development.
8. Leverage the tremendous talents and skills of corps members in the machines of effective change in our rural communities.
1.2. Classification of CDs
CDs is classified into two, namely: group community development service and personal community development service.
Group Community Development Service(Group CDs)
Corps members are expected to spend one day a week in group CDs activities. They are not expected to fulfill their obligations at their place of primary assignment. Such days are devoted to the implementation of projects and programs that improve the living conditions of the host community.
Corps members come together in their various groups to discuss issues affecting the community and look for a way out. They divide themselves, go into markets, churches, schools, etc. understand the peoples' trouble, and try to meet persons in positions to handle issues discovered.
These corps members are divided into different groups and each group has its mission toward the host community. E.g Servicom, charity, NDLA, Health, etc. to understand the groups of CDs more, read CDs groups and activities.
Personal Community Development Service(personal CDs)
These are projects/programs carried out by individual corps members to the host community based on the needs recognized in the community. Corps members are encouraged to look for areas that may have a personal impact on the community, in addition to the Group CDS.
These could be construction projects such as toilets, boreholes, bridges, classrooms, school playgrounds, or social/educational projects such as ICT labs, school libraries, extracurricular lessons, campaigns, philanthropic projects, vocational training, etc.
Personal projects attract awards from local, state, or federal governments.
1.3. Project Selection
Two essential factors to guide the choice of projects are:
- SMART test for project management: That is, the project must be concrete (defined), measurable (visible results upon completion), achievable (whether it is possible), rewarding (merits), and timed (due to completion).
2. The community felt needs: Hungry people are in desperate need of food. Dressing him/her can't help them in this material time. This is not the need he/she felt. People who are ill need treatment. It doesn't make sense to give him/her the shoes to use.
Similarly, carrying out a community development project that is not the felt need of the community amounts to a futile and meaningless effort. CDs Schedule officers and Zonal/Local Government Inspectors should be consulted by corps members for guidance.
1.4. STEPS FOR EXECUTION OF PERSONAL CDs PROJECT
1. Interaction between corps members and community stakeholders to identify the felt needs of the community;
2. Identification of sources of funds for the project.
3. Preparation of an operational proposal with the guidance of Local Government and Zonal Inspectors.
4. Projects are approved by the NYSC Secretariat after consultation with zone and local government inspectors.
5. Mobilize resources in consultation with community members, community councils, government and non-governmental organizations, and non-profit philanthropists. Corps members are warned against writing letters to the government, parastatals, and private organizations without passing through the State Coordinator
Also, corps members are not allowed to call home for a project no matter how rich their family and relatives are. All funds must come from within the host community.
6. Ensuring contact with links related to the implementation of projects jointly carried out by corps members and the community.
7. Execution of the project.
8. Submit your progress report once in two months with all documents and pictorial evidence.
9. completion report to the NYSC State Secretariat
10. Commissioning and handing over to the Community.
11. Giving feedback to persons that donated towards the execution of the project.
Allowing the community to participate in the process allows for decision-making on a project. When decisions are jointly taken it ultimately leads to the reliability of such projects and community ownership even when the corps member leaves.
1.5. CRITERIA FOR PERSONAL CDs PROJECT APPROVAL
i) Period of Project Execution:-All CDs projects must be completed within the service year. You cant complete a project as an ex-corper.
ii) Source of funding: Funds should be sourced from the communities, individuals, and organizations within the State of service. On no account should corps members fund the CDs project with his/her allowance or money from parents/relatives.
iii) A written proposal must be forwarded by the corps member and addressed to the State Coordinator through the Local and Zonal Inspectors.
iv) The importance of the project to the Community must be stated in the proposal.
v) Location and accessibility of the project: Projects to be executed by corps member(s) should not be in disputed areas and should be accessible to members of the host community. For instance, a corps member should not drill a borehole in a king or chief's compound instead, such projects should be done in a square where everybody can access it.
vi) The reliability and benefits of the project to the Community after the departure of the corps member must be stated.
Frequently Asked Questions on CDs
1. Can a Youth Corps member belong to more than one CDS group?
No. This is because every Corps member must be committed to his/her group and ensure full participation in their activities for maximum output.
2. Should a Youth Corps member’s individual CDS project commitment interfere with his/her primary assignment?
No. NYSC Youth Corps member’s individual CDS activities should be carried out during NYSC Youth Corps member’s spare time and must not affect his/her official responsibilities in the place of primary assignment and group CDS activities.
3. Is it automatic that I must get an award once I carry out a personal CDS project?
No. The main objective of every CDS project is to contribute to the well-being of society, to leave a mark of honour and a legacy worthy of emulation behind.
Therefore, carrying out a CDS project does not translate to winning an award and the scheme is not under compulsion to reward you for carrying out a community development project. Even though in some cases they do.
4. Should I as a Corps member get approval before embarking on personal CDS project?
Yes. To ensure proper documentation, and supervision, a proposal must be forwarded as earlier stated in this article, and approval received before embarking on project implementation.
5. As a corps member what is my gain in caring out personal CDs?
As a Corps member, the sense of self-fulfillment that comes with adding value to the lives of people/communities cannot be estimated in monetary terms.
Furthermore, the immense appreciation shown by communities as well as project beneficiaries coupled with the skill acquired in project management is of great value to committed NYSC Youth Corps members who execute CDS projects in the course of the service year.Back to top
2 ) Conclusion
Community development service(CDs) is the third out of the four cardinal programs of the NYSC. It is very important and should be taken seriously as failure to pass this stage may cost you your discharge certificate or service extension.
Apart from that, community development service allows you to discover and harness your potential alongside making a great impact on your host community.
This impact you make gives you a sense of self-fulfillment that cannot be estimated in monetary terms.
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