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LEAP Africa Launches Social Innovators Program (SIP) in Support of Young Nigerians | View Photos



SIPA Launch - BellaNaija - November2013015Leadership, Effectiveness, Accountability and Professionalism (LEAP) Africa launched its Social Innovators Programme (SIP) and Awards at the Shell Hall, MUSON Centre, Onikan Lagos on Monday November 11, 2013.

The initiative is in partnership with YouthActionNet®; a programme of the International Youth Foundation (IYF), joins them to identify, develop and support Nigerian youth who are addressing social changes in their communities and wordwide. It also enhances the chance of the Nigerian young social innovators to apply to YouthActionNet® Global Laureate Fellowship.SIPA Launch - BellaNaija - November2013003 SIPA Launch - BellaNaija - November2013002

As part of the launch, LEAP hosted an innovation workshop for secondary school students and teachers. The goal of the workshop was to engender a culture of creativity amongst students and their teachers. Sessions were led by Taiwo Akinlami of Taiwo Akinlami Inspires and Philip Obamighie of PuzzleExtra. Some schools present at the workshop include: The Bells Comprehensive College Ota, Eko Akete Grammar School, Dowen College, Oxbridge Tutorial College, Randle Senior Secondary School and Yewa College Ilaro.

At the programme launch, twenty young social innovators, selected from applications received from across Nigeria, were showcased and inducted as SIP Fellows for the 2013/2014 class. The key criteria for selecting the inaugural class of social innovators included leadership, motivation, creativity in problem solving approach and potential of initiatives for increased impact. Selected social innovators will have access to training, mentoring and networking opportunities with collaborators and other change agents across the world.

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Some of the SIP Fellows inducted include: Ayoola Ajebeku, co-founder of Nearest Locator – an app designed for developing countries for easy navigation; Jackson Akor, co-founder of Initiative for Youths with Disabilities Empowerment and Advancement (IYDEA) – which empowers physically challenged youth with skills to become entrepreneurs; Halimat Odewale, co-founder Nigeria Diabetes Online Community (NDOC) – an initiative to improve diabetes care via the use of social media; Otto Orondaam, founder of Slum2School Africa – an initiative which provides educational support structures in slums.

The keynote speaker at the event was Rick Little, founder of the International Youth Foundation. He addressed the audience on the key principles for actualization; stressing the need to live in the gap – providing innovative solutions to social problems- adopt a learning approach and persevere through challenges.

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LEAP formally presented its newest publication, How to Get a Job, targeted at job seekers and those who want to make career changes.SIPA Launch - BellaNaija - November2013010

LEAP board members present at the launch were Udeme Ufot, MD/CEO SOU Saatchi& Saatchi who gave the opening remarks, Babatunde Dabiri, Chairman of the Lagos Pension Commission, and Ndidi Nwuneli, LEAP’s founder. Some guests at the launch were Niyi Yusuf, Accenture Country Manager; Anyium Chibuzo, SPDC and Dr. Florence Etta-AkinAina, ED, TY Danjuma Foundation, Mr Marcello DiFranco, Deputy High Commissioner to Canada, Ms. Ini Onuk, Lead Consultant and CEO ThistlePraxis ConsultingToki Mabogunje, CEO Toki Mabogunje &Co and Representatives from SNEPCoInterswitchDiamond Bank and Lagos State Government.
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  1. Anon

    November 18, 2013 at 10:10 am

    Ndidi Nwuneli is such an inspiring woman.

    • Kay Cee

      November 18, 2013 at 12:20 pm

      Innovation and Nigerians in Nigeria can not mix. The mentality of Nigerians is, “where will I benefit” rather that discussing long term impacts. I met with Nigeria’s minister of technology and communication in Silicon Valley a month ago and shared my idea with her, she brushed it off the Nigerian way. Initially, my plan was to design my software to benefit Africans but from her negative vibes I decided to explore American an Asian market with it where Ideas and meritocracy are also practiced. As I type this text,a silicon valley VC company gave my company 2million dollars seed fund just by reading my business plan. If Africans don’t encourage each young brains, more intelligent and innovative Africans will sell their ideas to western countries that appreciate knowledge the most. I am not a son of a Nigerian Politician but I attended a prestigious University in United States via merit. All the best to those young kids that are hoping to gain from this publicity gathering branded as SIP. My software will be available for free to all Nigerians in Nigeria 2020 if by then at has not been acquired by google….lol

    • Confuzzled

      November 18, 2013 at 1:43 pm

      So, you went to a minister and expected what? Why didn’t you seek private Nigerian investors like you did when sought VC funding in the US? As a Nigerian I take issue with your choice of words: What do you mean she “brushed it off the Nigerian Way?” Lol.

      Why must government do something for you? FYI private financial institutions do exist and work in Nigeria. Did you expect the minister to give you government money for your project? That is not her job. What exactly did you expect from her? Maybe if you had used the proper channels you would have gotten support back home. Either way, it seems like you got your funding. Best of luck in your endeavors.

    • st

      November 19, 2013 at 3:48 pm

      So because you got a no from the minister, you concluded that Innovation and Nigerians can not mix. Great logic!

    • sunki

      November 20, 2013 at 3:05 am

      Hi Kay Cee,
      What software are you referring to (If I may ask)?

  2. Glad

    November 18, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    This is really great! As usual, hardly any comments as everyone rushes to see what Toke wore to the wedding smh… I wish we would wake up, these are the posts that should be grabbing our attention not all this gossipy and wedding related posts! All the best to the fellows. @ Kay that is truly sad to hear but if you truly were designing for impact and not benefit as you stated, there were other avenues for seed funding in my opinion that you could have used instead of just giving up on the African market. I daresay you too were only looking for “your benefit” *smiles*

    • just saying

      November 18, 2013 at 2:12 pm

      Mainly because how often does Bella Naija posts topics like these? Unless its sponsored?
      Gossip/Entertainment is free and doesnt require sponsorship , so hey!
      I can list out so many corporate bodies doing incredible things, which can benefit Bella Naija readers, but we all know it wouldnt be posted unless they pay.

  3. Tinuade

    November 18, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    great stuff! keep up the positivity!

  4. Mrs Dangote (nee Anonymous)

    November 18, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    Iyadunni I see you 🙂

  5. Iris

    November 18, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    • Confuzzled

      November 18, 2013 at 8:26 pm


  6. Kay Cee

    November 18, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    I never asked the minister to give me portion of her national cake, endorsement can be made without monetary values. At first,I planned on organizing a free seminar to showcase my innovation, and all I needed was for her to assist my company in approaching stakeholders that will eventually benefit from my technology. She is the minister of technology and her job is to bridge the gap between stand alone Nigerian entrepreneurs and major companies.This alone will encourage young brains to innovate. Bellanaija, founder generates revenue from adverts to maintain overhead cost(wages,operation expenses). I employed software engineers from different countries to keep my innovation up to date, were you guys expecting them to work for free?

  7. mercy

    November 19, 2013 at 5:44 am

    @ kay cee, i understand what you are saying. and i think its not a bad idea, as for me i would recommend that you atleast bring it to nigeria, for creation of job opportunities and stuffs, but o well, who is to say, everything happens for a reason. ur story has motivated me though, and i do admire your ambition and talent. wish we could be friends

  8. Banks

    November 19, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Oh! I missed it…

  9. Banks

    November 19, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Oh! I missed the programme.

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