Late in 2019, as Jeremiah Genesis Ezra felt ill, he was burdened by the fear that it was a spiritual attack; his hope of existence was left hanging in the balance.
“I remember going to different praying houses with my mother until I got healed in 2020,” Ezra recalled.
Following his recovery, Ezra felt that the only way to show his gratitude to God was to reach out to orphans and children from underprivileged families.
“I chose to focus on the orphans because they lack earthly fathers, and I sought to be the bridge connecting them with their heavenly father. I yearned for them to witness the acts of kindness and generosity we were about to perform so that someday, they will grow up replicating it in their adult lives,” Ezra said.
Since June 2020, Ezra has been celebrating his birthday not with extravagant parties but with the most heartwarming gatherings.
On the 16th of June each year, he gathers a group of people to share love and blessings with orphans and underprivileged children in some of the orphanage homes across Jalingo in Nigeria’s Taraba State.
These children get clothes, shoes, and food. They are given gifts of material value, hope, and love. Also, Ezra started a program tagged Jeremy With Orphans and Kids that is held at ECWA Bishara 2 Church in the Sabon Gari community where he resides.
This annual program aims to educate people about the immense rewards that life bestows upon those who give to others, particularly children with no parents to cater to them.
“We don’t have criteria for selections, everyone is vital and will be taken along, we don’t sideline anyone regarding your tribe, race, or religion. The same goes for the orphanage, every orphanage deserves to be visited, to be impacted, and to be loved,” Ezra told Prime Progress.
26-year-old Ezra sees a future where these children, raised in an atmosphere of compassion and generosity, will grow into adults who carry love in their hearts.
Ezra said he couldn’t forget that day in 2022. The program ended late in the evening, and a boy walked up to him.
“The boy bent down and said thank you for what I have done for him, I was so touched that day. I felt goosebumps, no one had ever walked up to me to tell me thank you for the gifts we have offered to them, if not that boy, I can still remember his face vividly,” Ezra narrated.
Alpha Nnamdi David, 17, is among many orphaned children who have benefited from Ezra’s intervention since 2021.
David resides in the Sabon Gari community and is hoping to extend this act of giving to other needy children someday.
“I was fortunate to receive clothes and food donations during both the 2022 and 2023 programs,” said David.
He also received books and writing material to support his education at the Government Day Secondary School, Sabon Gari, Jalingo.
Ezra’s work extends beyond orphans; he is also a guardian angel to the victims of natural disasters. In 2022, when flooding ravaged the communities in Lau Local Government Area of Taraba State, Ezra joined hands with a politician, Anthony Ayuba Saleh, to contact some victims.
“When I saw the situation and how the flood affected them, I decided to reach out to the affected communities. During preparations, we contacted individuals who were ready to donate to the project, a lot of them responded to the cause, and we were given a lot of clothes totalling almost 1,000 clothes and other materials, which we distributed across the communities,” Ezra explained.
These activities are often self-funded by Ezra; other times, he relies on contributions from family and friends, mainly the clothes donated by individuals who felt the need to support the cause.
Today, this act of giving changes Ezra’s perception of life, and he derives pleasure from it.
“I have learned that I can bring smiles to people’s faces by sharing what I have been blessed with. Giving back is not a burden; it’s a privilege,” he said.