Iruka Ndubuizu’s Bio
Who Is Iruka?
I was born and raised in Nigeria. I have a name people can barely pronounce. I belong to the minority population in the United States. On the surface, these attributes do not exactly scream privilege for someone residing in the United States. Yet, I consider myself privileged. I was born prematurely during the Civil War (Biafra War) in Eastern Nigeria. A lot of babies born during the war did not survive. Some died of malnutrition; some from minor ailments. I not only survived, I thrived. The war ended a year later. I grew up healthy and, thanks to my parents, got a pretty good education and joined the workforce. I eventually relocated to the United States 26 years ago and have lived and worked here ever since.
I had several advantages by virtue of my birth order, incredible upbringing and God’s infinite Grace which I did nothing to earn. These advantages gave me a leg up in life. I am fully aware of the fact that I am one of the lucky ones. This, however, does not mean that I never faced hardships. I have had my share of them, some of which are ongoing.
When I was younger, I took many things for granted and spent a lot of time focusing on what I did not have. I have since adjusted the lens with which I view my world. My 50th birthday is a few months away, so I began the process of counting my blessings as well as itemizing and ranking my privileges. I was surprised to see that having health insurance ranked pretty high! Probably not the best insurance and quite costly, but at least I have one. This realization galvanized me to think about all those who cannot afford health insurance. Or worse, those who live in a country where most people do not have access to basic health services.
Once I began to realize how fortunate my life has been, I understood my privileges, and that moment of comprehension was followed by another: acknowledging my privileges requires me to be responsible and look out for those who are less fortunate. I must use my privilege for good, and I now ask you to do the same.
I embarked on a project to raise funds to donate much needed medical supplies and equipment to Imo State University Teaching Hospital in Nigeria. This is a huge undertaking and I would appreciate your assistance.
Together, we can improve healthcare in that community and afford them better opportunities. As they say, health is wealth.