The Kinabuti & Pulse.ng ‘Dare2Dream’ (D2D) model search, an international youth empowerment initiative sponsored by First City Monument Bank (FCMB), with support from other leading brands like Nestle, Lenovo, Dana, Golden Vita, MAC and a host of media partners came to an exciting end last Wednesday at the Federal Palace Hotel and Casino in Lagos, with the grand finale.
At the end of the competition, 21-year-old Tolulope Balogun, of the University of Lagos, emerged the winner. For achieving the feat, Tolulope Balogun won a cash prize of half a million Naira and a one-year ambassadorship with FCMB.
The month long Dare2Dream initiative began with a selection programme that took the organizers across some universities and across the country in the search for the next big talent in the fashion and modeling industry. At the end of the exercise, 18 candidates made it to the national competition.
They then embarked on a rigorous training programme (bootcamp) where they were coached on different subjects from presentation skills, posing, walking, social media strategies and inspirational speeches from entertainment celebrities and successful business owners who have made a mark in their different fields and careers. One of the highlights of the Dare to Dream project was the contest tagged, ‘’FCMB Challenge’’, which was hosted by the Bank and used to further evaluate the contestants and select the final winner.
The contestant were all excited on the day of the finale with many celebrities lined up to mingle, chat and network with them.
The grand finale of the Dare2Dream event was hosted by Kaylah Oniwo of Cool FM who dressed in Kinabuti designed outfits. The show was graced by dignitaries, indigenous and international celebrities. The guests were served Ciroc Vodka cocktails and Nescafé drinks with DJ Rolly on ground to provide house music. The runway was revved with the Kinabuti “Vlisco Khan” Collection presenting both menswear and women’s wear with stunning pieces, while Kinabuti’s bridal wear stood out.
The Dare2Dream grand finale attracted talented designers such as TAJ from UniUyo and Morafa from UniLag who showcased their women and men’s wear on stage. Two upcoming music artists Izy and Sunni from UniPort and comedian Sammy from UniUyo discovered in the course of the University auditions, performed for the first time in Lagos in front of the crowd while SPAN dancers held the audience spellbound.
The 4 finalists which include Eno Josephine from Lagos State, Ekah Idongesit from Akwa Ibom State, Chiamaka Chinedu from Rivers State and Tolulope Balogun from Lagos State had the chance to walk their first runway, proudly appearing in the new Kinabuti new. The 4 female finalists, though from different fields of study and different parts of the country, had three things in common – they are young, beautiful and determined to achieve their dreams.
The final challenge of the show was to defend “How the FCMB prize would contribute to achieve their dream” in front of high-profile jurors, including Dharnesh Gordon (MD of Nestle Nigeria), Lola Omotayo-Okoye, Marcy Dolapo Oni and Remi Sanusi of FCMB.
Tolulope Balogun won the competition having provided the best answer making sure to note the role of youth in any upcoming enterprise.
Speaking at the event, Ladi Balogun of FCMB assured of the Bank’s commitment in continuously supporting the youth by empowering them and encouraging them to develop their skills and ideas that can drive them to achieve their dreams.
Guests at the event included Ladi Balogun, Idowu Sobanjo (Rep. Lagos State Governor), Dr Grazia Dellanova (Acting Italian Consulate), Alhaji Sayyu Dantata (Chairman of MRS Holding), David Kliegl (GM Federal Palace Hotel & Casino), Dharnesh Gordon (MD of Nestle), Lola Omotayo- Okoye, Anita Okoye, Maje Ayida and Toke Makinwa, Baba Epega (Richard Coker Foundation) and The Venus Bushfires, Marcy Dolapo Oni, Toke Ibru (Publisher of The Guardian), Eng. Amin Moussalli (GMD of Cool/Wazobia TV), Tatiana Moussalli Nouri (DGMD of Cool/Wazobia TV), Gautham Hathiramani (DMD of Dana Group), Shahin Nouri, Eku Edewor, Freda Francis, Malcolm Obinna, Elma Godwin, Ene Maya, Ozzy Agu among others.
Dare2Dream is a co-production of Kinabuti Fashion Initiative (KFI) and Pulse.ng and proudly sponsored by FCMB, Lenovo, Golden Vita, Nescafé, Dana Air, MAC Cosmetics, Federal Palace Hotel & Casino and Richard Coker Foundation. The media partners are BellaNaija, The Guardian, This Day Style, Cool TV, Cool FM, Wazobia TV, NTA, Africa Magic, Spice TV, 360Nobs.com and Stylevitae.com.
BellaNaija is a Media Partner with Kinabuti & Pule NG’s ‘Dare2Dream’ Project