How Did You Survive NYSC Camp? 11 Corpers Share Their Stories

March 4, 2020
Survive NYSC Camp

NYSC camp is the ghetto. But you know what’s even more ghetto? Having to survive NYSC camp. We asked 11 corpers how they managed to survive NYSC camp and here’s what they said:

Hannah – NYSC Camp, Nsai Atai, Akwa Ibom

I weaseled my way into becoming the social director of my platoon and they gave me ID card to get past the soldiers and others. The rest is history, my dear. Every other thing I did—from missing morning parade and SAED lectures—was for the glory of the platoon.

Anu – NYSC Camp, Iseyin, Oyo State

How I survived NYSC camp? Lmao to God be the glory, my legs were swollen so I couldn’t wear boots or sneakers. For most of my days in camp I wore bathroom slippers. The clinic gave me a pass so it was was easy to escape parade and drills. I never ate camp food, na me be Queen of Mammy Market. I also didn’t join anything abeg, I no get time. In all, camp was interesting, but the weather was too hot. I turned black in just a few days. I had to sleep with a small fan by my side. That fan was a life-saver.

Survive NYSC Camp
See how dark I was?

Onyx – NYSC Camp, Imo State

Imo camp was different and fun and everything else you can think of. My survival technique was that I stopped thinking and feeling. Food became my coping mechanism. Even when I was suffering on parade ground due to those “papa flies,” the oily water and early morning drills, I thought about food. If I wasn’t sleeping, I was eating or I was doing the eating in my dreams.

Survive NYSC Camp imp state

Lytan – NYSC Camp, Borno state (Camped in NSCDC Babbar Ruga, Katsina)

Bathing more than six times and drinking close to three big bottles of Eva water daily was how I survived. The sun was terrible. To escape parade, I did a lot of things. I hid under the bunk, hid in Mammy Market, ran off to join those on sanitation duty even if it was not my platoon. I faked sickness several times too so I could avoid the useless social night activities, the morning drills and SAED.

Iyanu – NYSC Camp, Ogun state.

You want to survive NYSC Camp? Join the OBS crew. That’s the best advice. As part of the crew we had an ID card which served as immunity against soldier and parades. During programs like swearing in, I was seated under the pavilion all in the name of OBS, while my fellow corps members were sweating in the sun.

Princely -NYSC Camp, Nonwa-gbam-Tai, Port Harcourt, Rivers State

I survived by not staying. I have a medical condition —a series of conditions actually— that would not allow me participate in full camping activities. My plan was to join OBS, render my professional services, and in return avoid the physical activities. That didn’t work out. I was told to leave camp the next day; a soldier insisted I was going to march —shortly after leaving the forced (happened like a kidnap) jogging by Man-O-War— and I had told him if I marched, I would leave the camp, but it wouldn’t be with my own feet.

I was sent to the clinic where my exeat was processed. I wanted to have the experience anyway, but life happens.

Uzo – NYSC Camp, Iseyin Oyo state

I have lived in boarding houses from around age 9, so camp didn’t feel any different. I was just a low budget kinda guy. Did everything on a low-key. No girls, only made and hung out with a few fun friends who didn’t cost me so much money. I made do with about 9k till we got the bicycle allowance and first allawee. I ate at Mammy market once in a day. To get high, I discovered black bullet. One can does more than 3 bottles of beer and costs just the same as 1 bottle. Flex.

Samuel – NYSC Camp, Dakingari, Kebbi state.

I had to deliberately enjoy every camp activity. The weather was mean, yes, but I enjoyed the drills. I was the director of socials, the drama director, and I was quite popular. Three-in-one fun. I almost lost my phone after the welcome party. The funniest thing was, they already blew the bugle for lights out! Omo, I no gree o! I ran outside. Thank God I saw my platoon instructor who guarded me till I found my phone in Mammy Market! Make I no lie, camp sweet me die. Maybe we should do another 3 weeks before POP?

Adisa – NYSC Camp, Babbar Ruga, Katsina.

My survival technique was hiding under my friend’s duvet in the corner where his bag was located. I’d surround myself with his luggage and ask someone to lock the door at the front for me. Sure way to escape without being caught.

Survive NYSC Camp

Tobi – NYSC Camp, Rivers State.

To avoid morning parade, I’d pretend to shit for long, because our block’s toilets were quite neat. But then I wasn’t always successful as platoon rep. Them go find you come shaa ni. But camp was literally the best part of service for me. I could have gone on for 2 months.

Tiana – NYSC Camp, Cross River, Obura camp.

I’m a very careful person, so I was less adventurous in camp. The only time I escaped from parade, it was because my friend gave me liver. Obura camp was bad, abeg. Mud slides, hard water (very oily surface), and there was no light, so the camp ran on generator. I ate camp food only three times. The rest of my stay in camp, I spent money on catfish pepper soup and Smirnoff ice. I also liked eating egusi and pounded yam. It’s heavy spending, but at least there was enjoyment.

This is what the water looks like when you leave it overnight.

The mosquitoes were terrible. I fell sick a week before camp ended so I took four injections on my butt. The camp also had notorious flies. They bit my friend and he got sick and ended up with scars on his body.

Platoon activities were the most fun I had. I danced for my platoon about 3 times. And then there was this suya that I always bought during social night. I played volleyball too!

But see ehn, if you know you’re like me and you hate suffering, please don’t be ashamed to outsource. I paid those “any work” people to do my laundry and fetch water. No shame there. SAED lectures were torture for me. I spent most of my time either sleeping, listening to music, eating or chatting with friends. Because, let’s be honest, how can a sane person sit through two hours of boring lectures?

How did you survive NYSC camp? Tell us!

Kunle Ologunro

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