The event; Africa Green Awards was set up to promote young Africans in the green sector—The Awards recognizes young innovators in the sector working to preserve our environment while also promoting the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
From alternative energy to upcycling to sustainable fashion, sustainable and affordable agriculture to advocacy and strong youths’ empowerment across Africa, this initiative seeks to encourage them and spur other African youths to action.
Though this year’s event was virtual, it delivered in various capacities as it had several speakers from different walks of life locally and globally.
The guest speakers at the event included; the Ambassador of Sweden to Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon and ECOWAS, H.E Carl-Michael Gräns, Dr. Musonda Mumba of the United Nations’ Environment Programme, Joaquin Boston; Chairman of the International Board of Global Actors and Business for Sustainability and Dr. Richard Munang, United Nations Environment Africa Regional Climate Change Programme Coordinator.
During the Ambassador’s Goodwill Message, he noted that the environment and climate change are very important and we must stress the importance of engagement and dialogue to make positive changes.
Top highlights at the event include the announcement of the top 3 finalists of the Africa Green Grant Award; Rita Idehai, Bilkisu Garba-Diallo, and Adejoke Lasisi.
During her speech, Dr. Musonda mentioned how proud she is of young and brilliant Africans in the green sector, she noted that the United Nations Environment Programme has been working with different young women looking at how the restoration of the environment matters and finally, she congratulated all nominees and encouraged them to keep up the good work.
The recipients of the award categories (in no particular order) are:
Dr. Richard Munang, (Cameroon) Africa Regional Climate Change Programme Coordinator, United Nations Environment Programme also known as the father of Innovative Volunteerism was bestowed the Green Champion Award
Steffi Maingi of EBAGROPAMOJA (Kenya) was announced the winner of the Africa Green Person Award.
The Green Female Award went to Bilkisu Garba-Diallo who runs The Upcycle Architect in Nigeria.
Tolulope Olukokun of Think Electric Africa Initiative in Nigeria emerged as the winner of the Under 40 Green Award.
Victoria Wangui (Kenya) of Nyika Silika won the Green Media Award.
Victor Maduforo of Marist Brothers’ Juniorate, Nigeria, was named the winner of the ‘Inter-School Green Essay Competition’ and Adejoke Lasisi of Planet 3R won this year’s Africa Green Grant Award. Adejoke was also awarded the sum of N1 million having contested among 10 finalists, who lead several startups in Liberia, Nigeria, and Kenya.
Prominent during the event was Joaquin Boston’s speech which focused on Africa and how important it is to transform fully and grow in strength through practices.
‘To the youths and young people from Africa, he said, we have to keep doing meaningful things to ensure that nature is not affected with the help of United Nations and other professionals in the field.’
The ceremony was indeed filled with so much fun, thanks to the hosts; Tolulope Adeleru-Balogun and Seyifunmi Adebote. The organizers of this event hope that attention is placed on the green sector and the African youths to support their efforts and turn the African continent positively for good.
On Thursday, November 19th, 2020, a physical presentation of some of the Award plaques was done at the residence of the Swedish Ambassador to Nigeria, Ghana, Cameron and ECOWAS, H.E Carl-Michael Gräns. Others present at the event are; Seyifunmi Adebote, Communications Officer at the Swedish Embassy in Abuja, Barr. Adanna Kalejaye, Group General Manager of Eleven Eleven Twelve Foundation, Zadok Adeleye, Project Lead of Eleven Eleven Twelve Foundation, and Oyinkansola Sosanya, the Communication Lead of Eleven Eleven Twelve Foundation. Recipients of the Green Female Award, Under 40 Green Award, Africa Green Grant Award, and one of the 2020 Africa Green Grant finalists, Rita Idehai, and correspondents from News Agency of Nigeria were also at the event.
H.E Carl-Michael Gräns appreciated the work of these young Africans in improving the environmental quality and supporting its sustainability. He congratulated EETFoundation for another successful Africa Green Awards and encouraged young Africans to be more proactive and continue to bring those innovations into solving environmental issues.
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