THE PRICE OF CHANGE:SOMEONE PAID IT SO CAN YOU.
People talk alot about change these days, saying the time for change is now, how they want to be part of it and how they want a life of greater meaning. I also hear them talk about fear, they want a life of purpose but they don’t know where to start. They don’t want to disappoint their love ones. What they don’t get is; it isn’t expected of them to be perfect but to be human and nothing important happens in life without a cost. We seldom talk about the cost and sacrifices. But the real question is: what is the cost of not trying?
Sometime last year, AGRO-HUB announced they needed a volunteer: someone to help with the online marketing. Sybren Van Putten, a native from The Netherlands offered to volunteer for Agro-Hub as an online marketer. Sybren had never been to Africa talk less of Cameroon yet he agreed to come volunteer at Agro-Hub, at what cost? One can only imagine what he went through with his friends and family to make them understand why he decided to do this and overcoming his fears of going to a new country and living with strange people. Wondering if they will be satisfied with what he has to offer.
Although we are in an arguably moment of crisis, there are some who believe that there has never been a more exciting moment to be alive. Probably because of the technologies, resources, skills and mindset to create change such as Sybrens’. He arrive Cameroon on the 7th of January and started work with AGRO-HUB. He supervised the managing of the online platform and training the AGRO-HUB marketer on online management skills which he did pretty well. Online marketing wasn’t all he chipped into the project; he also did beautiful designs for AGRO-HUB’S fliers, banners and posters. He had a good eye for beautiful designs.
Sybren brought to the team, a full spirit of energy and commitment. His initial plan was to work with Agro-Hub for one month, yet he ended up staying with us for 3months. He loved it here and blended so well in the society that I often told him he was Cameroonian in white skin.
Sybren joined AGRO-HUB at the advent of Agro-Mart, a phenomenal shift in Cameroon’s agricultural market in which standardization of agricultural produce seeks to prevail. Agro-Hub launched its 1st farmers’ supermarket on the 28th of March 2013 and two days later, Sybren came to the end of his generative stay with the Agro-Hub family. I often saw him as a global citizen who recognizes the fact that it is okay to be human and paid the price to be part in the change in Cameroon’s agricultural sector. He left his family, friends, job back in The Netherlands to be part of a change in the lives of rural farmers in Cameroon.