Stories from Nigeria: Daniel

By Cliff Kindy, Brethren Disaster Ministries volunteer reporting from Nigeria

Daniel has been a driver for EYN travelers since 2002. He is married with seven living children and lives with a brother who is also married and with one child. His mother is still living and is caring for nine other extended family members.

When Boko Haram raided EYN headquarters on October 29th Daniel escaped with all his family and ended up in Jos where he continues to work as a driver with EYN. But he had fields of beans and ground nuts near Mubi ready to harvest when he fled. He does not know if loose livestock have destroyed his harvest.

Daniel’s mother crossed into Cameroon for safety when Boko Haram ransacked the areas surrounding Mubi. Her group of ten has faced difficult conditions in the mountains of Cameroon because there has been no relief agencies or government assistance coming to the aid of these refugees. As returnees have reported, “We lived on leaves.” The ten people in her group just returned to the Yola area and are living in the IDP camps that have dramatically increased the usual Yola population. Daniel was able to visit his mother one day while the group he drives for was conducting a trauma healing workshop at an EYN congregation.

Though some families are slowly returning to Mubi, Daniel has his job in Jos which helps support the members of his and his brother’s families. He faces a difficult choice between the income-producing job in central Nigeria and the possible harvest and extended family back in the eastern part of Nigeria. What would you do if you were in his shoes?

One thought on “Stories from Nigeria: Daniel

  1. The IDP camp in Jos where Daniel lives with his family is sponsored by the Stephanos Foundation. Because the rent will expire at the end of January camp residents will no longer be able to remain there. It has been getting more difficult as the well inside is about dried up and the camp has not been able to keep the drinking water tanks outside the gate filled for camp use.

    There were 152 families residing in this camp when we visited in early December, 400 of the residents were children. The EYN director of education is exploring opening some schooling possibilities for these children. The government has provided none for displaced children and the public schools in the three northeast states have been closed about one year under the state of emergency.

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