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Saturday, 20 May 2017

Everything you need to know about NYSC Camp/Camping 2017

Everything you need to know about NYSC camp and camping in Nigeria. How to go through  NYSC   camp without  breaking  down.

Corper wee! - Your response  should be Wa!

Okay.  You probably  have already told your Facebook friends what state you were posted to for service  by now.  Congratulations  on your on special occasion.  Sincerely  we at Gistgate  congratulate you.

I wrote this article  which is not a short one to give you details  on what to expect in NYSC camp.  This is the first of it's  kind and it's  written  to help prepare  your mind for the camp so that you will not make unnecessary  mistakes and will not be taken unawares. I hope that at the end of this article you will be mentally  ready to face the NYSC Nigeria Camp life.

The NYSC camp is not a child's play and from the day you enter camp,  or the second day the soldiers  will start ringing  it in your ears that you are no longer a free bloody  civilian.
Well that's true. So let me prep your mind for what you will encounter in NYSC camp.

1. As you arrive at the camp you will meet lots of other young men and women (some not too old). At the gate your bags will be searched  to make sure you have no explosives, knife, iron, heater and such other dangerous  stuff. The soldiers  on the day 1 are usually cool so no worries .
Any prohibited  item will be kept for you after you register  them and you can collect  them on the day you will leave camp. At the gate, you will submit  a photocopy  of  your  call up letter.

2. Once you get into camp, you will most likely  be approached  by some photographers who will offer you mouthwatering  offers of covering  you all through  your stay in camp at just 1000 Naira. It's another man's  business  so I won't  discourage  you from registering. But most times  the video they  produce finally  is nothing  to write home about. If you subscribe to them,  they will give you a tag.

3.  After the gate registration ,  you are expected to locate where they assign hostels  and give mattress  and their you will be assigned  to a hostel and be given a mini foam. Its usually  dirty and torn so brace yourself  and go with your bedsheets  and pillows  if you want.

4. Congrats. You now have a house. Inside each hostel or "Block" as it is called there  will be a number of bunks. Maybe up to 20 to 30 bunks. Each bunk has a twin bed (up and down).
Where you get to stay in the Block depends on what time you arrive camp.
Tip: The earlier the better.
Usually  there will be no lockers where you will keep your valuables so if you are someone  like me who can't  do without my laptop and smartphone remember  all your properties  are kept at owner's  risk.

Tip: Normally  after passing out of camp, people  go back to their home before going back to resume work at their PPA. So if you have very valuable  things like laptops, jewellery  etc that you cannot  afford  to loose you could leave them at home and after camp you can go back and fetch them.
Or you can register such at the security  post or with a camp official that has an office and keep them there  till passing out.
Sincerely  there are some people who go to NYSC  camp to steal. Some camp messengers  too may be involved  in stealing  in camp. So be careful .

5. Now you have a house. Remember  that registration  begins  on the day camp opens and if you make it to camp on time from day one you can get registered on all phases and then relax.
So you drop your bags. Take your file that contains  all the documents you need and you head over to the hall where the registration will be taking place . Normally you will get in the and be queue . Be ready to spend hours with the registration .
l don't have to detail that . Just make sure you have all your documents and the photocopies. At least 6 per.

6. After the registration you will then go to the place where your platoon officer and other members will be. This is your new family. Love them, interact, and socialize. Here you will go through another registration, you will be given the necessary uniforms: one khaki jacket, one khaki trouser, one belt, one jungle pair of  boots, one white shirt, one cap, one pair of socks, one NYSC crested vest, a pair of white canvas with NYSC crest, on white short and meal ticket.

Note that  is normal that some of the kits  you will be given will not fit you.  You can go back later to your platoon  officer for a change.  But the normal is that while the sharing is still on you go around  calling out for anyone who has your size and needs the size you were given. This is only necessary  for jungle  boot and canvas. For other things you can amend  them at the camp market  called Mamy...

You will also be given some books including NYSC byelaws, ABC of CDS , language guide depending on the state you are sent to.
You are to get the phone number of your platoon officer.
There  are few other things like photocopy  that you may need to do. Submission  of your medical report (all of you with fake reports,  there is God oo).

7 . You may wish to go now to where the different banks are located and start your registration.
Usually the first bank registration will be in one bank. In some camps  after the first registration with one bank  for everybody they will still separate you later into different groups according  to your state code.  Each group will then register with the bank assigned to them them.
This means opening a new account with the banks.
The first bank you register with is  where your federal  allowance   (allowee) will be paid into. Make sure you have your BVN with you.

How to check your BVN on MTN  line: Dial *565*0#. It will cost you N20 

When filling the bank form  don't  tick the box for ATM  card if you won't need it. They will deduct 1000 Naira from  your  first allowance if you select to get ATM card.

The bank registration takes time usually  do prepare your mind. You might be there till 8pm to 10pm.

When your allowee  comes you can transfer it to the your main account.

Go and rest and wait for the evening biggle .

The biggle is a trumpet-like sound instrument that will be used to call you out every time  there's something  to do in the camp. So be ready to hear it a lot.

8. Some camps may decide to gather you all in the evening  of the first day of camping  and address you.  But be sure that from the second day of registration camping  will become serious.

a) By about 4:30am you will be woken with the biggle. You are expected  to dress in your white and white (White fowl) uniform and rush to the assembly  ground as soon  as the biggle blasts or the soldiers  will come for you and chase you out.
b) From the first or second day in camp you will begin training for your swearing  in ceremony which follows registration.
Some good marchers and instrumentalists will be selected to be band leaders and marching leaders.
c) Your swearing  in will occur on a selected day simultaneously with across the nation  and some people will faint on that day because of standing "Under the  sun and in the rain". Don't worry. Red Cross  will be there for you.

The rest of the camping will be almost routine.
- You will be wake early,
- you will have assembly  and morning  drilling  which is mainly jugging around and exercisng led by Man-O-War.

- Those who refuse to go out,  the soldiers  may embarrass them if they are caught
- You will hear biggles in the morning  for assembly ,  by 7 or 8 for breakfast, by 9am for seminar. A lot of people will be seriously  sleeping during these seminars.  Not advisable. But be ready  for many long seminars. Sincerely.
- Another biggle by 2pm for lunch, another by 7:30 or 8pm  for dinner. Camp food is usually annoying.  Its part of the system.  Enjoy it while it  lasts. Lol.
- Biggle will call you out for drills, call you out for eating, call you out for socials, call you out for SAED, call you out  for everything and also by 10pm tell you is time for lights out.

- You will choose which skills  acquisition  you want (SAED - Skills  Acquisition  and Entrepreneurship  Development ). They will include shoe making ,  tailoring ,  ICT, agro-allied , paint making,  cookery, cosmetology etc.
That's me at Paint making SAED 

- You will have variety  night and social nights were you will have fun with drama, music competition ,  catch the  train, etc.
- There will be beauty pageant
- There will be camp fire night (This has been stopped  in some  states because  some corps members take advantage  of it to have sex.)
- You will have platoon meetings and inter-platoon competitions in sports and other social activities.
- There will be carnival. Oh sweet carnival!

- You will have marching  practices  everyday, morning  and evening except  Sunday  mornings.
- There will be Christian groups like NCCF (Nigeria  Christian  Corpers Fellowship), RCCF, Catholic  and others you can worship with.
- For the Muslims  there is MCAN - Muslim  Corpers  Association of Nigeria.
- There will be no shrine  for idol worshippers. Lol
- After some days  in camp you will be paid your bicycle  allowance of 1000 and later you will be paid another.
- Remember  to  fill the "Book of Life". It will be announced.
- Each platoon  will have platoon  commanders ( soldiers  who will instruct you on how to march and behave); you will have a platoon  officer and platoon  leader (a selected or elected corps member).

-There will be a "Mamy" market for buying goods and receiving  services.  Everything from buying  better food, sewing torn cloth, buying  spare kits or exchanging the one you are given if it's too small or big.
-There  will be clinic. But note that it may be ill-equiped and not have the type of medicine you will need.  So if you have a condition that requires  special medicine, buy your drugs at home before leaving for camp. Don't use the clinic as hideout to dodge from camp activities.

- Some corpers will get attached and there is usually some sexcapades in the camp. This is illegal and if you are caught in the act your camping  and service may end there and you will be publicly  disgraced.

- However, ironically condoms are shared in some camps.  This is not done in the Northern states though.

- Hold your body. It  is  best.
- Camping is not for pregnant  women. They will be sent packing  almost as soon as they finish their registration.

- Relocation  can only  be done on the basis of  serious  health problems backed by reports. You will also be interviewed. The panel will decide  if you are telling truth or lying.  Secondly  you can relocate  if you are a married  woman, to your husband's  place.

- Now this is a very controversial case. The married  men will not be allowed to relocate  back to their wives. This in my view is not sensible  enough.

- There are some people  that go to kitchen to eat up to 3 plates in one period  through manipulation and if their friends are at the kitchen  door. Shine your eyes or they will finish the food before it gets to you.  Lol

- There will be cases of stolen items ranging from boot lace, uniform, caps, shoes to handsets,  money, laptops etc. So be very careful. Make sure you go to camp with a Waist bag for putting your phone and cash and key to your bag.  Never leave your Waist bag. Never! Your cap too.

The NYSC will not replace stolen items.  Even if you cry.  Lol. The thief can be fellow  corpers from your lodge or a neighboring  lodge, it could be the errand boys who go around.

- Some hostel mates can make noise like hell. Be ready for it.  Join in the fun,  it's  just 2 weeks. Don't kill yourself.
- Before  you leave camp you will be paid your first federal  allowance  of 19800. This will assist you in transportation. Start  saving  now.
- You will practice  hard and the best people  in marching will represent their platoons  for the Passing  Out Parade.
- On the passing  out day wake up very early and pack your belongings. If you belong to any religious  group,  take the bags and bucket etc to the designated  place and tag it. It's safer there. You can also take your bag to  the gate.
- By 9 am you will be in your 6 over 6 at the parade ground, ready to say goodbye to camp. Within an hour or two,  the  passing  out parade will be over. You will go to your platoon  meeting places and collect your posting  letter.
Don't cry. People usually cry if posted to somewhere they heard is bad.
- There will be buses to convey you to your local government  of posting at a cheap price.  You can also take cab. For the big guys. Lol.

Hug your camp friends,  take selfies, exchange  contracts.  You may never see them again.

Congratulation.  You are are now mentally ready for NYSC Nigeria Camp Experience. I believe I've fulfilled my aim of writing this.
Wishing you all the best and safety.

This is the first in the series to make your NYSC successful. In the next articles I  will write on how to be happy  in camp and then how you can save money and make money while serving.

Corper weeee..... waaa

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