AYL Inspires: Popular Nollywood Actress and TV Presenter, Rachel Bakam Shares her Story with King Sniffy


Rachel Bakam is a Nigerian actress, writer, TV presenter and producer, and an anti-human trafficking ambassador. She is the CEO and Managing Director of Rayzeds Media Ltd, Founder & President of the Nigerian Water Ski And Wakeboard Federation (NWWF) and Media Consultant for the Performing Musician Employers Association (PMAN) & African Fashion Reception Paris. Bakam is a peace and tourist ambassador. She is 2015 alumna of United States International Visitors Leadership Programme. She hosts Trends & Rachel, a popular television show that airs on Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), African Independent Television (AIT), DSTV, and Startimes. She also produces and presents Rachel the PIPER and hausa version RACHEL MAI KAKAAKI; an entertaining yet highly humanitarian television programme.

Below is her interview with King Sniffy, where she shares her life's story and the battles she fought before getting to where she is today.

King Sniffy: Good day, ma'am. We are pleased to have you on AYL Inspires today. So without wasting much time, can you tell us who exactly is Rachel the Piper?

Rachel: I am Amb. Rachel Bakam aka Rachel the PIPER. The Word "PIPER" is an acronym for 'People', 'Issues', 'Projects','Places', 'Events', 'Enabling' and 'Raves'. It is said that whoever plays the piper dictates the tune. Our PIPERS play the music of  positive change and
development.

King Sniffy: Can you tell us about your background?

Rachel: I was born as the only girl...the second to a family of three boys. My mum and dad are Bajju from Kaduna State. Dad is from Fadiya Tudun Wada,  Mum is from Mafo in Kachia. I was brought up by Christian Parents who instilled in me great values even though my dad passed when i was just 12. He was always in the hospital because he had cardiac arrest. I started selling items when i was 9 not out of necessity but because i loved earning from that age. I also asked my mom to buy me a blackboard which i used to teach other children in the neighborhood. I always looked for a job during school strikes and breaks. I worked in a supermarket, recording studio as a female dj, etc. I enjoyed working. I was also a very shy child but Church activities built my self confidence. I was in Girls Brigade, youth fellowship, sisters' fellowship, drama group, melodies singers, etc. I was also very active in school. Social and academic at the same time. Somehow I could balance both. So I was PRO Young Farmers club in SS1, Then assistant labour prefect and fashion Co'ordinator of literary and debating club in SS2. Then the unusual status of Head Girl and Literary and Debating club same time in SS 3. I also graduated amongst the top ten best students in Primary 6. I had a full and great childhood. My mum trained me to be very responsible domestically and my cousins were usually sent to our home to learn how to work. I had lovely cousins. We had sleepovers. Played hard, etc. Most of my work values were grown during my growing up days.

King Sniffy: That's interesting. So how did you venture into the media?

Rachel: I presented my first tv Programme on NTA called YOUR TURN, a children's tv Programme for which I was anchor. I was selected after i did exceptionally well in a debate at the Kaduna State Media Authority to anchor a teenage radio Programme called Teen's Garden. Then I landed my first acting lead role through sheer luck. I was selected to play the lead role in the first soap opera to be produced in Kaduna State. Through all of these, God blessed me with multiple awards up to when i finished my University as the Best Graduating student in the Faculty of Arts. To date, my awards are up to 200 to the Glory of God. I became born again in my University. When God delivered me from a demonic relationship. Praise the Lord.

King Sniffy: Hallelujah! What about your educational background, can you also tell us about that?

Rachel: I attended numerous schools all round Kaduna. I attended MT daycare, nursery and primary school for my daycare, then clara nursery and primary school. Then Saint Annes nursery and primary school. Then Saint Saviours. Then finished my primary school in Kaduna Capital School. Where i went on to have my secondary school and ended my year as the headgirl. From there i proceeded to Ahmadu Bello University where i graduated as the Best Graduating Student, Faculty of Arts. My project is still used as study in the school library. After which I aattended the New York Film Academy and gained a diploma in Digital Filmmaking as organised by Delyork in Nigeria. My mum really tried in training us single handedly after the loss of our dad and like i mentioned earlier, i earned from work too. I remember how i will come back on the day of exam from Enugu where i went to act and i will be reading on the way and i was still always the Best Student Academically by God's Grace.

King Sniffy: You seem to be spiritually active. May I know about your spiritual life?

Rachel: I have always served God in Ecwa as a young girl but i totally gave my life to Christ when i was in my University. I was dating an unbeliever who had familiar spirits then and he promised that if i leave i will die. He stalked and never gave me room. We even opened a club together in Zaria. I drank but never smoked. I was literally living with him in GRA but i was still heading the class academically. After i left him, he said i would die and I took ill. It was then I received Christ through revelation. The first word of the Spirit to me was "There is no power more than you going on your knees and praying." I obeyed and the rest is testimony after testimony. I received my miracle of healing then and the Spirit of God began to speak to me and through me. I put myself for use for Him by counselling and praying for many. Today i am a Christian Counsellor amongst other things and i bless God for being used to add value to His Kingdom.

King Sniffy: That's heart touching. You seem to have a passion for humanitarian activities. May I know what inspired you into it?

Rachel: I love God and humanity. My intention is to add value to the growth of humanity for the Glory of God. I believe that if one loves God, one will love human beings too and will do all onecan to contribute to the positive development of humans. My dream is for there to be peace globally and for Nigeria to be safe, secure and more developed than it is right now. I also want to fan a Ministry that will impact positively on lives putting God's Glory on display. I want to also touch more lives positively through my NGO. I want to be part of seeing Kaduna State develop to the level of Dubai and even more. I want to sit in Government so as to be able to implement all these.

King Sniffy: Nice. Can you tell us what led to the establishment of your foundation, Rachel the Piper Foundation?

Rachel: I have always reached out to touch lives even before registering my NGO. I have two other companies: Rayzeds Media limited and Ceepipers Technology Limited. I registered the NGO in order to officially make it possible to impact more.

King Sniffy: What are the aims and objectives of your NGO?

Rachel: Our aims and objectives are as follows:

1.1. To organise women initiative group action programmes in agriculture for
food security, health, family planning, income generating, education,
community work, maintaining a good family and protect them from social
vices.

1.2. To improve knowledge of the beneficiaries in practical skills and education that can make them entrepreneurs as well as empowering women and youths who had little or no chance of formal education with basic
technical/vocational skills.

1.3. To develop and implement a community based, lowcost comprehensive
health care programme for mothers.

1.4. To promote general awareness among all categories of people on health
and nutrition with specific attention to children.

1.5. To promote and collaboration with other organizations, bodies or
individuals whether national or international having advocacy strategies
for peace building, cultural exhibition and other similar cause as laid herein

1.6. To assist and support the emancipation and development of the less
privilege people in the society.

1.7. To promote community services through maintenance of safe, proper water
and sanitation systems with various other programmes.

1.8. To utilize the talents of the media men in the service of the society.

1.9. To bring about literacy and spread mass education through various forms
of mass media.

1.10. To promote anti-drug movements, create awareness about AIDS and other
deadly diseases.

1.11. To do all such other lawful things as may be considered to be incidental or
conducive to the attainment of the above objects or any of them.

King Sniffy: What are some of the projects your foundation has executed?

Rachel: We have had numerous projects. From taking food stuff and paying the fees of Idps in New Kuchingoro IDP Camp to paying the medical bills of a terror affected victim in Karamajiji idp camp. We also reached out to mentor and give seed capital to 20 ladies from Southern Kaduna. We also Organized Covid-19 relief outreaches and orientation at New Kuchingoro IDP Camp giving food, mosquito nets, hand sanitizers and face masks to Idps. Then we moved on to impact same in the lives of widows in Byazhin Kubwa. We didn't stop, we traveled all the way to Kaduna State Ugwan Kaje with palliatives and face masks. From there we organised a Media and press men outreach in the FCT. We are now preparing to visit Kaduna again Ugwan Gwari precisely with palliatives and face masks. We are trying to access more grants so we can impact some more. We wish to use this medium to appreciate our partners who have made these projects possible so far.

King Sniffy: You're a successful presenter with AIT and you're also successful in running your foundation. So what is the secret behind your success?

Rachel: Successes: I have a lot of tastes of successes by God's Grace. I attribute it all to God. The number of awards i have won so far can attest to that. From the NEL Awards London to the Africa Diaspora Awards Amsterdam to the African Achievers Award South Africa and many notable recognitions through the years, I cannot but be grateful. Being a mother is also a great success for me. Being able to travel around the World promoting Nigeria and calling on investors is notable for me. That was how i founded the Nigerian Water Ski and Wakeboard Federation of which i am the President today and we made history by being the first black skinned nation to represent Africa at the Wakeboard World cup in Jordan. I have a successfully ran NGO called Rachel the PIPER FOUNDATION. I have two other Companies: Rayzeds Media limited which produces Television content for AIT, NTA, Africa Magic and syndicates on other platforms. We are also PR consultants, Film makers and documentary producers. My recipe for success is God. All i do is to put God's Glory on display and i have a covenant with God. Plus you need to request that God gives you the vision for your life. You may be sitting and that will reveal itself like a cinema to you. You must be purposeful. Plus you have to live a part of your life for others. You must give to humanity. In all these, once you receive your vision, you must tenaciously work hard towards the actualization of it all. You have to work, push and not give up no matter how many times you fall. You must get up and keep going until you win.

King Sniffy: Have you ever felt like giving up? If yes, how did you overcome the challenges?

Rachel: Sponsorship is very hard to come by especially in Abuja considering the hub is Lagos. So that has been a challenge which we are overcoming. You have to engage the services of marketing agencies in Lagos or marketters to sell your brand. Being an independent producer and entrepreneur also has its hassles. Sometimes you feel like giving up but you have to keep pressing and pushing until you win. You will always cross the hurdles as long as you don't give up. The Spirit of God is always there to encourage me to keep moving on and when i behold all the responsibilities I have to my loved ones and humanity, I have to keep on

King Sniffy: Who is your role model?

Ans: My role model is God. Then humanly Tyler Perry, Patience Ozokwor, Late Dora Akunyili, etc

King Sniffy: What advice would you give to other women out there who are aspiring to start something great and also become great just like you?

Rachel:  You have to see yourselves as a chosen generation. A royal priesthood. A special breed of Queens sent to impact positively in this World. You must first know and believe that you are special. Very special indeed. Sent on a special and specific assignment to put God's Glory on display. You shouldn't only try to take shortcuts but put in the hard-work to be someone. You have to strive daily to get better and stronger. The Word of God is there to strengthen, encourage and guide you. You have to key into the scripture in all things. YOU ARE THE BEST. SEE YOURSELF AS THE BEST IN ALL GREAT AREAS NO MATTER WHAT LEVEL IN LIFE YOU ARE. Use the power of your mind also to build positive things because the Bible says "As a man thinketh so he is". On top of it all 'At the name of Jesus, every knee must bow, on the Earth, under the Earth and in the Heavens. So make all bow to you. All obstacles must bow. For you are Queens

King Sniffy: Thanks a lot for your time, ma'am. And I hope you keep inspiring the African youths. 

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