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Oluwatoyin Olayemi holds a Bachelor’s degree in Library and Information Science from Delta State University, Abraka. A Fashion Designer(unisex clothing),An experienced, Competent and Passionate Teen Coach and Child Safety Advocate trained by Piece of My Heart Foundation.

She is currently the program manager at Piece Of My Heart Foundation (POMHF)

Driven by love for change, humanity, helping teenagers live a healthy and purposeful life, Oluwatoyin Volunteers with POMHF to coach teens.

Oluwatoyin is keen at helping to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4&5 by helping Women and children understand the concept of sex education, seeing that children have a healthy and safe upbringing void of abuse via sensitization_

Oluwatoyin has a platform @chatwith_toyin where she reach out to teenage girls in her community.

She was the president of her fellowship during her undergraduate days also the NCCF Kwara State Sisters Cord while serving her father’s land.

She is a Yali Member, a Public Speaker, a passionate youth advocate and a serial Volunteer with years of experience.

She shares her “Ruby Girl” story with the team .

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Oluwatoyin Olayemi?

Oluwatoyin Olayemi is the 4th child from the family of seven parent inclusive.
I’m a graduate of Library and Information Science from Delta State University..
Oluwatoyin is a passionate lover of Jesus Christ, a change maker, a hope giver, a teen coach and a fashion designer.
She lives because Christ lives in her.
I am the programs manager @piece of my heart foundation, I have a platform where I reach out to teens @chatwith_toyin and I’m also a co founder of Rhakel’s couture.

2. What inspired you to study Library and Information Science ?

Hmmm, inspiration ke? Well, I studied LIS because I didn’t have any choice.
I did Pre Degree, I was admitted to study Geography and Regional Planning but I didn’t have Geography in Waec so I was transferred to LIS which is the second option for social science students who enrolled for pre degree. That was how I became a Library student.

3. As a volunteer, what has it taught you.

Volunteering has taught me to be kind and compassionate, to love more and to appreciate God more for who and where I am. Volunteering has also helped me to appreciate the gift of men.. People! We can’t do without people in our lives

4. What is the greatest challenge for young entrepreneurs in Nigeria?

As a young entrepreneur, there are so many challenges we face in Nigeria. Some of the perceived challenges include lack of information on what entrepreneurship entails , taxation and regulatory issues, limited understanding of market structure and lack of proper mentorship amidst others.

 

5. Why did you become a teens coach?

Being a teens coach was birthed from the desire to see young people tread on the right path. To lend an helping hand through the journey of teenagehood.

For me, I had no one to put me through life, I figured life out myself with the help of God.
My former boss said he graduated at 19 because he got it right on time. He had a mentor that helped him through his journey early enough.

6. What are the challenges you encountered as a teens coach and child safety advocate?

Some teenagers are hard to help, they feel they know everything and don’t like people intruding into their life’s affairs. So, you have to be very strategic to help the ‘I know it all’ teenagers.

Another challenge is that parents feel they know all too. For example, I am not married and don’t have my own kids yet, because of this some parents will be like ‘what do you know about children’? Go and give birth to your own first before you talk to us.
Most of these parents aren’t willing to come out of their ignorance.

3. Finance: Sometimes I wish to reach out to young girls in the slum but I don’t have enough resources to make my desire a reality.

4. The right against women and children should be well preserved by the Government and perpetrators should be brought to book irrespective.

7. There is a decline of Library usage by students, as a Library graduate what do you think is the way out?

We Nigerians don’t like to read, we aren’t even familiar with the library.
The only way out is for parents to imbibe a good reading culture in their children.
Thereby reading won’t be a challenge when they are grown.

Secondly, the Government should establish more libraries in all cities and make them very conducive for learning. This will help increase our appetite for reading.

Thirdly, they should make it free. I wanted to visit the Museum recently and I was asked to pay a sum of N300. That’s not encouraging.

 

 

8. What was growing up in a Nigerian home like for you? Did it in anyway contribute to everything you do now?

Beautiful question. Growing up for me was not fun. I played though but I went through a lot.
I battled with self esteem for a long time, I was a slow child and wasn’t doing well academically.

I had so much battles that I can’t even state here.

I didn’t have any body to put me through life which led to my desire to help young ones.

 

9. If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

1. Projects and Programs on a paradigm shift in mindset.. This country can only be better when we have the right mindset towards life.

2. Our Educational System

3. There should be a market price policy whereby no individual can just wake up to inflate the prices of goods and services.. Nothing should be monopolized.

4. Equal right to life. Ensuring that the human right is preserved.

5. Electricity

10. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

There are so many wonderful women in my life but I will mention just 3 as requested.

1. My mom. The super industrious and super amazing woman. A business woman per excellence. Very meticulous and accountable.

2.DDK… Debola Deji Kurumi is one woman that inspires me so much. How she balance her ministry, family and organization so well amazes me.

3. Adebara Adebimpe. Her passion, her resilient spirit, her commitment is second to none.

11. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

I see myself ministered to over 5000 teenagers. I see myself taking Rhakel’s Couture to the next level and I also see myself doing whatever He (God) says I should do.

12. How do you juggle being a teens coach, child safety advocate and running a fashion house?

For now there is no much juggling because I’m just coming up. Taking things one step at a time.

13. If you were allowed to address a group of young females five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

This is the best time to marry yourself and birth the best out of you. You are enough with God on your side.

Blessing Okebe is a Facebook and Google certified Digital Marketer, a project manager and a corporate event host.

She is the founder of ‘Building Influential Brands’. A Facebook community focused on helping individuals discover what they want to be known for, build influence and visibility around it and make money out of it.

She is also the Lead Trainer at ‘The Brand Mastery Academy’ where she trains industry experts, career professionals, impact drivers and business owners to build and grow a profitable Brand and position it for Influence.

She is an OAP, Writer, speaker and teacher and has spoken on a number of media platforms across Nigeria.

She has also been nominated for several awards to which she was awarded some.

She believes in every man’s capability to live a life they truly desire and deserve.

She shares her “RUBY GIRL” story in this interview.

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Blessing Okebe?

Blessing Okebe is a Facebook and Google certified Digital Marketer, a project manager and a corporate event host.

She is the founder of ‘Building Influential Brands’. A Facebook community focused on helping individuals discover what they want to be known for, build influence and visibility around it and make money out of it.

She is also the Lead Trainer at ‘The Brand Mastery Academy’ where she trains industry experts, career professionals, impact drivers and business owners to build and grow a profitable Brand and position it for Influence.

She is an OAP, Writer, speaker and teacher and has spoken on a number of media platforms across Nigeria.

She has also been nominated for several awards to which she was awarded some.

She believes in every man’s capability to live a life they truly desire and deserve

2. What inspired you to choose a career in Mass Communication?

I have always loved to talk. Been in front of the Camera or a large number of people puts me in my element and this is something I can do even without getting paid.

3. What does being a brandpreneur entail? And what made you choose to become one?

BrandPreneur is a combination of Branding + Entrepreneur. Just like a modern day entrepreneur, I provide solutions to problems surrounding Branding. I help people go from obscurity to visibility and influence. I choose to become one because I am committed to helping people become the best version of themselves and being a BrandPreneur helps me achieve that.

 

4. As a digital marketing strategist, what do you feel is the greatest challenge of Nigerian businesses and brands in relation to digital marketing?

How to Sell without Selling. Most businesses migrate online with the same mindset they had offline, the mindset of making sales. While this is good, businesses must understand that promoting a business online comes with a different strategy. Relationship building is key. People come to interact and build relationships online and not to buy, that is why it is called SOCIAL media. Every business owner must therefore key into this to make money online.
They should focus on interactions and building relationships through creating valuable, relatable and consistent content around their business and around themselves. These content should focus around solving the problem of their target audience as regards to their brand/business. When this is done, it makes the target audience trust the business owner enough to do business with him/her and this is where they make the most sales

5. Your most memorable moment as a corporate event host?

Seeing the smiles on people’s faces, especially my hosts as they watch me do what I am definitely good at. Oh and the picture moments too.

6. One accessory you can’t leave home without?

My earpiece/headset. Helps me listen to podcasts on the go or while waiting. Enjoying good music is an added benefit too.

7. What are some challenges young people in Nigeria face in the process of carving out a name and brand for themselves?

Primarily confusion especially if they find what they can offer as value or if they are into several things and can’t find which to choose. I help them out by asking certain questions. Some of which are
Which are you most passionate about?
Which can you make money from?
Which have you built expertise or gotten results in?
Is there a ready market for it in your current environment?
Which do you see yourself doing in the next 3 to 5 years.
They also have issue on the kind of content to create and how to position themselves online for opportunities and influence. I solve this through my trainings and coaching sessions.

8. Mention five tips for young people trying to build their brand or venture into the digital marketing space.

– Define your WHY. Don’t start out on something because of pressure or because everyone is doing it.

– Understand that clarity is a journey. You will never have it all figured at once. The further you go, the clearer it becomes.

– Have the mind to SERVE and not to make money. Doing the first guarantees the second.

– Never take relationships for granted. Build profitable relationships with people below you, within you and above you.

– Never stop investing in yourself. The market out there is a very dynamic one. If you stop growing, you get left behind

9. If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

The educational curriculum. Infuse more practicals than theories and equip students with the right knowledge and tools they need to succeed in Nigeria. Knowledge surrounding money, entrepreneurship and business.

10. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

Adebola Deji-Kurunmi.
She is a pure definition of FireBrand and Slaying it.

Joyce Daniels.
She does exactly what I will achieve in my ‘Event Hosting’ career and she does it so well.

Adaora Lumina
Her creativity, thoughts and processes are not the usual, they are different.

11. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

Travelling round the world, hosting corporate events, speaking to people and helping them go from obscurity to visibility and influence

12. How do you juggle academics and all other ventures?

Definitely not easy but I have learnt to prioritize which comes first in a particular season and for now it is my academics.

I manage my time productively for my business, work and trainings. Though this makes me miss out on some of the activities my mates are fortunate to engage in, I know my future self will thank me for it.

13. If you were given the opportunity to address a group of young females five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

JUST START. Start anything, it doesn’t mean you always have to continue with it. Stop over thinking, most of these thoughts are just in your head and may not happen.

Expose yourself to new ideas, relationships and places.

Be selfless when building relationships especially with people you admire. Serve them with your skills and knowledge and don’t always think of what they can give you.

Whatever journey you embark on won’t be easy so prepare to be disappointed, confused, discouraged etc. But not matter what happens, keep pushing. Keep tweaking until you see what works, take a break if you must but make sure you come back stronger.

Imiesor Ojo is a fifth year pharmacy student at the university of Benin. She’s a peer educator and a SRH(Sexual and Reproductive Health) advocate.

She volunteers at The Medvocacy Initiative (TMI), where she’s the programs director. She is also a volunteer with the Girls’ In Charge foundation(GIC).

She shares her story with the Ruby Girls team.

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Imiesor Ojo?

Imiesor Ojo is a young female entrepreneur with a passion for gender eqality and SRH advocacy. She is also a Pharmacy student at the prestigious University of Benin. In a bid to gain further knowledge and competency in sexual and reproductive health advocacy, she has participated in several certification programs. One of which is the prevention of campus sexual violence program courtesy the EU-UN spotlight initiative and WARIF (Women At Risk Foundation). She also volunteers with The Medvocacy Initiative and Girls In Charge Foundation, which serves as outlets to effecting positive changes around her immediate environment and beyond.

2. What inspired you to choose a career in pharmacy?

My love for chemistry at the time (back in secondary school) made me choose Pharmacy as my course of study despite the fact that my siblings wanted me to opt for Medicine.

*3. What is the greatest challenge for young entrepreneurs in Nigeria?*

The inability to properly manage finances. As much as people credit a lack of substantial capital as a major challenge, the fundamental problem lies with the management of funds. Poor financial management will most certainly lead to the ruin of any business.

4. Did your field of study motivate you to become a sexual reproductive health advocate?

Yes it did, although not entirely. I was also partly motivated by the negative impact that misinformation regarding sexual and reproductive health had on young people. Especially when a host of these consequences, which stems from uninformed choices, can be avoided by being privy to the right information.

5. Most people are still ignorant of the fundamentals of sexual and reproductive health, how can you address this?

The cure for ignorance is knowledge (education). Educating the masses, especially young adult, is my duty as a peer educator and a Sexual and Reproductive Health advocate. By using every platform available, I’ll be able to reach out to as many persons as possible and educate them on the subject matter.

6. Your greatest fear?

Not being able to harness all of my potentials.

7. What are some challenges you face as an advocate of sexual and reproductive health?

Lack of policy formation, review and implementation on the part of the government.

8. What was growing up in a Nigerian home like for you? Did it in anyway contribute to everything you do now?

Growing up in a family like mine hasn’t been the sweetest experience. Amidst all the disciplinary actions and strict upbringing I can gladly say it has contributed to who I am and what I do now.

9. If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

Well, Rome wasn’t built in a day, but if I were the president of Nigeria I would love to make changes to the educational sector of the country. The implications of poor/lack of education is devasting for self and the nation and it’s economy.

10. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

Mrs Florunsho Alakija inspires me a great deal. Albeit her status as a wealthy and prominent woman, she’s a symbol of sheer doggedness and hard work, and most importantly, she’s a woman of God. She’s a breathing evidence that women can achieve whatever they set their minds to, despite the odds.

Prof. Dora Akinyuli stands tall in that regard. she’s a symbol of intergrity, courage and passion in the Pharmacy profession.

Miss Chioma Uzoma, even though she’s a colleague of mine, has been a huge part of my success story so far. She’s purpose-driven, likes to carry everyone along and also she’s fearless (whatever she sets out to do, nothing stops her) and that motivates me.

11. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

As a well-established pharmacist, SRH and gender equality advocate. A woman that has come to the complete knowledge of herself, a woman of influence and power.

12. How do you juggle being a student, reproductive health advocate and running a hair business?

Time management cannot be over emphasized. Knowing how to share/manage my time has made my life a lot easier because quite honestly, school can be quite demanding.

13. If you were given the opportunity to address a group of young females five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

Whatever it is in life you want to do never relegate your education and the ministry of you to the background. Also, do not let people’s opinion of you validate/define who you are. And whatever it is you are called to do, do it, whether you’re scared, unsure, or inexperienced, do it anyway because there is no better time to do it than now.

Omotoke Olowo   Olugbode is a passionate inclusive education advocate with over 5 years’ experience in education, community service, and advocating for children with disabilities. She is the Founder and CEO of The Autism Awareness Foundation, an organization that is focused on inclusive education for children living with disability especially children on the Autism spectrum disorders. She is also the CEO at Theraconnect an online mobile App that connects parents of children with special needs to the nearest and affordable therapist.

Omotoke holds a Bachelor Degree in Education (Educational Foundation and Counseling) from Obafemi Awolowo University and a certificate in Youth Mental Health First Aid in USA. She is a Mandela Washington fellow and a 2020 LEAP Africa SIP Fellow.

Omotoke has spoken at International conferences including, The Concordia Summit at the Grand Hyatt, Voice of women at Wagner College. She also had an internship opportunity with the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability, Philadelphia, USA

Omotoke believes education is the bedrock of everything and without it she would not have been able to achieve all she has.

She shares her “Ruby Girl” story in this interview.

1. Who is Omotoke Olowo Olugbode?

Omotoke Olowo Olugbode is a passionate inclusive education advocate with over 5 years’ experience in education, community service, and advocating for children with disabilities. She is the Founder and CEO of The Autism Awareness Foundation, an organization that is focused on inclusive education for children living with disability especially children on the Autism spectrum disorder, while also raising awareness and advocacy in the community to change perspective and myths about Autism as she believes that each child counts and each child can learn irrespective of their disability, mental health or environment.

She is also the CEO at Theraconnect an online mobile App that connects parents of children with special needs to the nearest and affordable therapist.

Omotoke holds a Bachelor Degree in Education (Educational Foundation and Counseling) from Obafemi Awolowo University and a certificate in Youth Mental Health First Aid in USA. She is a Mandela Washington fellow, Outstanding Global Youth Ambassador for TheirWorld UK where numerous articles on her advocacy has been published, an Ashoka ChangemakerXchnage Fellow and a Robert Stiffing Alumni. She is also a 2020 LEAP Africa SIP Fellow.

She was awarded The Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders New Jersey, and also awarded as International Associates on civic Leadership at Wagner College, New York.

Omotoke has spoken at International conferences including the MakeImpossiblePossible Summit at United Nations General Assembly, The Concordia Summit at the Grand Hyatt, Voice of women at Wagner College. She also had an internship opportunity with the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability, Philadelphia, USA

2. ‎ What is The Autism Awareness Foundation (TAAF)?

The Autism Awareness Foundation is a not for profit organization that raises awareness about disability and inclusion of children with disability in the classroom and society while eradicating stigmatization and marginalization. We ensure children with disability especially children on the autism spectrum disorder get access to good and quality therapy for early intervention to function and get included in the school system as most children with disability are always denied access to inclusive and quality education.

The Autism Awareness Foundation started in 2017 as a not for profit where we create awareness for children on the Autism spectrum disorder, we have been involved in active teachers training and parental support group, due to our work expansion and experience we set up the social enterprise of THERACONNECT as physical connecting platform before thinking of the App. Currently, since May 2018, we have been involved in outsourcing over 50 therapist and special needs educators to parents, teachers and school.

3. What prompted you to start an inclusive education?

I am a Teacher by profession and I got into the Teaching sector as a zeal I have for Teaching which was further influenced by my friend who had a disability during my secondary school days, and I watched how he couldn’t get the adequate and efficient education during our school days.

Teachers would rather not have her in their classroom and she most often does not come to school at all. So, from there I developed a passion to become a teacher and a deep commitment for children living with disability so that I could be able to teach them in the classroom. After going through my University Education, I discovered that my Teachers then could not teach my friend because they do not have the knowledge and skills to teach children with disability.

The spark and motivation to start my Social Initiative come after reading an online article about a mother with a child with Autism, about how people refer to her child as being possessed, this brought back memories of my experience in secondary school with my friend.

Autism as a disability was strange to me and foreign, and as such I wonder if children in my community has this disability and they don’t have access to education.

I decided I want to advocate for children living with Autism because its disability in which a lot of parents and teachers are not familiar with and a lot of stigmatization and marginalization.

4. ‎ Apart from running an inclusive education that other thing to you into?

Apart from my NGO, The Autism Awareness Foundation, I am also an Innovator, I am currently working on an online App where parents can connect with Therapist without leaving their home which saves them stress, money and time.

I am a social Entrepreneur, I currently run a social enterprise called “The Sensory Place” that focuses on sensory materials, Toys and Montessori schools equipment for parents and schools owner while also consulting for schools on issues pertaining to inclusion in their classroom and connecting with therapist to schools and parents.

“We ensure children with disability especially children on the autism spectrum disorder get access to good and quality therapy for early intervention.”

5.How do you relax despite your busy schedule?

Netflix and gist is my friend when I am less busy. As a person who provide support in issues relating to mental health of parents and disabilities, I take my mental health seriously too, I know when I need to close my laptop, turn off my phone data, decline a speaking engagement and just relax, either with talking long hours on the phone with friends, watching amazing series on Netflix or just sleeping. I am more of an indoor person than outdoor.

“I decided I want to advocate for children living with Autism because its a disability in which a lot of parents and teachers are not familiar with and a lot of stigmatization and marginalization”.

6. ‎ What has the pandemic taught you?

The pandemic has taught me how to prioritize, most time we waste our time on things that are not really important but the pandemic has really taught me to cherish each moment, love people around and check on my families more. It awakened my sense of commitment and knowing how to show love to others too, even during the pandemic, I was still on long calls with parents on how they can support their kids at home in terms of therapy and achieving their milestones

 

7. ‎As a global youth figure, what has been your achievements on inclusion?

My achievement on inclusion has always come through my NGO, my impact has made over 100 parents accessed therapy for their children for early intervention, increase the awareness around autism spectrum disorder to over 5000 people in the community, through our annual Walk Aware Autism and trained over 1000 teachers on skills needed to include children on the spectrum in their classroom both online and physical training, with the advent of our online support for 30 parents as a form of continued training and counseling.

In all of this, my greatest achievement is when parents call me after their kids have been able to achieve a developmental milestone and when they get accepted in an inclusive school, the joy and smiles on parents at such moments always mean everything to me.

8. ‎What was growing up in a Nigerian home like for you? Did it in anyway contribute to everything you do now?

Growing up was a bit challenging but I grew up in a family full of love. Both my parents are quite loving and amazing people, my mum is the disciplinarian of the house while my dad condones me a lot, people will say it’s because we look alike.
I never had all I wanted while growing up but received love from sisters all the time, we shared everything and we could confide in each other.

Well, I will say my upbringing definitely contribute to what I do now, because I could feel what it means to be like one is unworthy or not enough. I understand the pain of women with children with disabilities in rural communities having being born and raised in one at Oworonshoki community, so yes my passion for setting up The Autism Awareness Foundation definitely stemed up from my own personal experience too.

9. ‎What are the challenges you faced when you became an inclusive educator? Do you still experience them? And also how were you able to overcome them?

Challenges are bound to happen, will happen and they still happen, one of the challenges I faced is the stigmatization and marginalization that comes with working with children with disability which is a big problem of acceptance and inclusion, another challenge is the myth associated with children with disability as a punishment from God as such most parents in my community prefer to keep their children at home and lock them inside rather than bring them out for assessment and therapy, as most schools won’t accept them and when schools finally accept them, other parents in the school sometimes withdraw their children from the school, saying they don’t want their children to catch the disability. And finally I am faced with the challenge of lack of trained teachers to facilitate learning in the classroom. I have been able to overcome these challenges through trainings and holding meetings with school owners to explain that disabilities are not contagious and children benefit more when they learn in inclusive settings.

 

10. ‎If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

If I were to be the president of Nigeria for a day, I would change the Educational sector. The Educational sector has become a shadow of itself and what it is supposed to achieve, most public schools lack trained teachers, use outdated curriculum and old teaching methods that does not facilitate independent and collaborative thinking on the part of students. Our graduates can’t even compete globally and our state of inclusive education is nothing to write home about especially with no therapist and special educators to facilitate learning. After changing the Educational sector, I will definitely reform and change the health sector, too much death, misdiagnosis and sometimes lack of doctors to train patient has led to more death than anything in recent years.

11. ‎Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

One of the women who inspire me is Clare Henshaw, she runs Girls Inspired Foundation, she has gone off to inspire many girls and yet with an humble and kind spirit, I am surely learning humility from her.

Another woman that inspires me is Jasmine, Jasmine is a mother to a child on the autism spectrum disorder who I met in Philadelphia, despite her position she has constantly been reaching out to me on how to provide support for more mothers in Africa and especially Nigeria.
Lastly is my Mother, being a mother to four ladies without a boy child, I know we all know how the narrative would have been, but she have kept it all together, fireful and always there for us her children, she constantly teaches faith and trust in the most difficult time.

 

12. ‎Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

In the next five years, I see myself running The Sensory Place into a big social enterprise, settling up a safe center for therapy and play center for inclusion of children with special needs and disabilities while they also learn a skill through our coder dojo club. I see myself running different starts up into big businesses and ensuring that I am constantly giving back to the society. I also see myself in a place of policy advocacy and implementation at the government level to ensure policy reform on inclusive education and ensuring inclusion in the workplace where each child can truly count.

 

13. ‎If you were given the opportunity to address a group of young females five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

I will tell them to explore all the opportunity they have at their disposal, aim for the sky and land among the moon, dare the impossible and to keep showing up for themselves. I will tell them that impossible is nothing and they are born to do great and amazing things. They should never underestimate themselves and to keep shattering limits and breaking new grounds.

Joshua Onyinyechi who hails from Ebonyi state is a final year student of University of Abuja
in the department of Biological Sciences.

Oyinye is an entrepreneur and CEO of Gift and Souvenir. She also runs a firm that connects prospective interns to their desired organizations. She shares her Ruby girl story with the team

1. Who is Joshua Onyinyechi Esther?

I’m an entrepreneur with extra sauce and grace, a strong and focused lady who believes I can succeed at anything I set my mind to do.

2. ‎ What is the inspiration behind Gift and Souvenir?

My passion for business. I’ve always wanted to have a business that has to do with problem solving.

3. ‎What is your greatest fear?

Not living purposefully.

4. ‎ How has the Covid-19 pandemic affected you as a student and entrepreneur. What have you been able to learn from it?

As a student it affected me because I’m supposed to be a graduate by now but with the whole pandemic graduating this year is not feasible.

As an entrepreneur the pandemic affected sales, But I’m glad everything is coming back to normal.

I learnt to trust God’s plan.

5. ‎What led to the birth of Internship opportunity?

Internship opportunity is a God given idea.
I noticed how graduates and undergraduates struggle to fit into the right place for interns, most graduate or undergraduate just apply for internship anywhere not minding if it’s in line with what they want to do, simply because they just want to get busy.

That was how interns was birthed, to help connect graduate and undergraduate with the right company that will allow them to grow, develop and advance their professional goals/career.

6. ‎ An accessory you can’t leave home without?

My phone please.

7. ‎How has internship opportunity been able to help people with placement?

It has been helpful to people especially in this pandemic, graduate and undergraduate have gotten paid interns opportunity in different states via our platform.

8. ‎What was growing up in a Nigerian home like for you? Did it in anyway contribute to everything you do now?

Growing up in a Nigerian home is one of the best though it wasn’t all rosy. Because I lost my dad at a very tender age, growing up was just with my mum and siblings..and yes it has contributed alot.

My dad taught me not to be dependent on anyone and it has helped me alot, I started having passion for business at age 9, when I return from school I joyfully hawk pure water and the likes in the market, which made me have a business mindset from early stage.

After secondary school it continued, but this time I applied for a job and I got it which also helped my marketing skills, people management etc today by God’s grace I have a business of my own and all I went through contributed to what I am and do today.

9. ‎What are the challenges you faced when you started the gift shop and internship opportunity? Do you still experience them? And also how were you able to overcome them?

Challenges I faced when I started gift and Souvenirs was sales, before I started the business I had people who were like “oh wow I’ll be the first to patronize you,” but when I started all of them were no where to be found (japa).

I didn’t really make sales when I started, I’ll advertise for one week nobody will even ask me how much by mistake (laughs) but I don’t experience such anymore by God’s grace.

I was able to overcome through consistency, despite not making sales then I kept advertising Because I know people are watching and when they think of gift I’ll come to their mind first because I’m always advertising.

Challenges I faced when I started interns was looking for organizations seeking to engage the services to Interns to register on our website( www.internsopportunity.com) Registration and Job listing is free (Internship Only)

I still experience this, I’ve not been able to get lots of organisations as expected to register on our website, I’m putting more efforts to get them register.

10. ‎If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

I’ll change the policy in hospital ( especially government hospitals) that says you have to pay first before doctors attend to you, all fingers aren’t equal and no one makes budget for sickness. Lots of people have been rushed to the hospital on emergency and probably don’t have money at hand to deposit first. Doctors will not touch you until you pay money, they won’t even attend to you to save your life first while your family members run around for money, at the end the person might end up dying.

As president l’ll make provisions too for that.

Secondly about NHIS card which is made available for only government workers will be accessible also to those who can’t fully pay their bills, the less privileged.

Provisions will be made for sickle cell warriors/people living with disabilities.

Good water and electricity will be fixed in some villages where people drink dirty water to survive.

11. ‎Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

My Mum, Mrs Nike Adekunle, Ma Esther Ijewere.

My Mum is a strong woman, she has a large heart, despite what life throws at her, she never gives up. I’ve seen her fight so many battles and still standing tall.

She trained my siblings and I right from childhood when we lost our DAD. Not all mothers can do that, some will just share their kids to different family members. But my Mum stood her ground, held us close we are what we are today because of God and her.
I’m grateful for her.

Mrs Nike Adekunle is a goal getter, she is so humble despite all her achievement. She gives listening ears always, she inspires me alot. She made walking in purpose for me easy. And I see myself in her always.

Ma Esther Ijewere is a strong woman, I admire her alot.

With her story she is still making impacts and touching lives.

I love her passion for humanity.

12. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

Next five years, I see myself at the top controlling businesses, and owning a shoe line.

13. ‎If you were given the opportunity to address a group of young females five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them? Not to let anyone pressure them, not even social media, they can succeed in anything they set their mind to do.

Be grateful for the small and big wins!

It’s okay to make mistakes, mistakes are part of success!
Never allow your background put your back on ground.
No matter what life throws at you please keep moving forward, lastly ever depend
on anyone financially.

Pamilerin Eniolorunda is a graduate  of the Mass Communication department, Joseph Ayo Babalola University. She is a Communication Officer, Vlogger, Writer, and Poet.

She has an interest in meeting new people, public speaking, writing and gaining more knowledge.

Pamilerin is deeply passionate and aspires to be a distinctive professional with an impact.

 

She shares her “Ruby Girl” story in this interview.

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Pamilerin Eniolorunda?  

I am Oluwapamilerinayo Eniolorunda, a communications officer, a poet, script writer and a vlogger.

2. What skills prepared you for practice in the Communications field?

The skills that prepared me for the communications field… Hmmm, I think it was my ability to think fast, build and manage relationships, my love for reading, speaking, and writing, and more.

3. Describe your channel in one word?

My  channel in one word, Informative.

4. To what extent did your degree as a graduate of Mass Communication contribute to the startup of your vlog?

My degree played a big role in my vlogging. I learnt how to edit videos, handle cameras, and act on the principles of a communicator. Thanks to my degree, I knew the requirements and had the skills needed of me to start my vlog.

5. How do you research for new contents?

I research for contents by watching and following the trends, conversing with my subscribers to know what they want and also watching lots of youtube videos. I spend most of my time watching videos and thinking of how to do them better.

6. What inspires your writings?

Everything around me inspires me. Stories, people, things, environment, everything! Over the years I have been able to create a bond with my environment and everything around me.

7. What are some challenges you face as a communications officer/vlogger?

One of the challenges I face as a communications officer/vlogger is trying to work out a schedule that is beneficial both my corporate field and vlog. The corporate field is quite demanding but it’s also very important to churn out contents for my viewers. Fortunately, I am doing an excellent job in creating a balance and fitting into both.

8. What was growing up in a Nigerian home like for you? Did it in any way contribute to everything you do now?

Growing up in a Nigerian home is a blessing. Having three sisters helped me to boost my confidence level and self-esteem. My mum as a teacher is a loving disciplinarian, she always corrected with love and is not the cane, broom, belt or wire kind of disciplinarian. My dad as an auditor made me financially conscious of how I spend and what I spend on, he equally corrected me with love when I was wrong or misbehaved. I would say I couldn’t have gotten the training and morals I have outside Nigeria.
Yes, my upbringing has contributed a lot to who I am character-wise and behavioural wise. I see beauty in everything everyone call mistakes, I see love as the way of life too.

9. How do you cope with viewers who dislike your content?

Experience in speaking and writing has made me realise that not everyone will like what I do, everyone has their opinions and that in the words I speak and write, I have the power of persuasion.

For every negative feedback, I acknowledge the receipt of the message and try to make the other party reason with me and also make them understand that there are different phases of life.

10. If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

President for a day?
This is a difficult question, but if I was one I’ll make new laws and policies that positively affect the masses, make a few changes in the Constitution, and also make a rule that the laws I made must not be changed till it’s practised for over 4 years. 24 hours seem short, but this is all I’ll work towards achieving.

11. Do you feel there is pressure in getting more subscribers and more views? How do you handle this?

Yes, I feel pressured sometimes. But I understand that its a gradual process and I try to do better as I produce new contents. I know that one day the number of subscribers will skyrocket beyond my expectations. I keep praying its soon too.

12. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

My mother, Mrs Eniolorunda, she inspires me to be a better version of myself. I admire the processes and approaches she uses in all she does. She has taught me to love all, live right, and trust God.

COO, Venture Garden Group – Mrs Eniolorunda and Media Mogul – Mo Abudu appear to me as models, a motivation that there is space for all genders at the top, that women can be who they want to be regardless of the society, and that what really matters is who we are and the position we want to acquire.

13. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

In the next five years, I want to be a distinctive first-rate communication and leadership professional, respected media personnel, a motivator and an agent of positivity. I plan to be in a position where my counsel is/will be needed to run the country or the most important sectors. I plan to be a leader recognised in the most profitable and beneficial aspect of life (religion and career). I wish to apply extensive knowledge in the service of communities and countries I am privileged to associate with.

14. What are the challenges young Nigerians in your niche face and what do you think can be done to improve this?

Over saturation of the vlogging space is one challenge, in the sense that one has to work extra hard to get viewership for the content published. Also, having an increase in the numbers of subscribers is another challenge. But the goal is to never give up… Tiny drops of water makes an ocean.

15. If you were given the opportunity to address a group of young females five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

My advice to them is to take innovation very seriously. It is important to learn to think outside the box be bandwagon outside educational ins, situations want strategic thinkers. There are tons of problems waiting to be solved so following the bandwagon is not necessary.

Also, my advice to them is to embrace Tech as much as possible. It is important to know the basics of the tech ecosystem and career paths because the future is tech.

Ikanna Okim is a phenomenal young woman who believes that she is equipped with everything needed for a new Africa.Ikanna is the movement leader of the No-FGM campaign against female genital mutilation in communities in Akwa Ibom state where the practice is rampant. A student leader, she is currently the President of the LAWSAN Bar Association, University of Uyo Chapter.

Ikanna Okim is also the Teennation Country Lead for Nigeria and Head of Legals. Ikanna is a prolific writer and has authored five books which have reached over 1,400 young people in Nigeria.

As a result of her commitment to correcting social ills, she was conferred the honour of a Fellow of the African Young Leadership Fellowship in 2018 and in 2020 made it to the nominee list of Community servants in Akwa Ibom State.

Ikanna, the academic aficionado, has also acquired certifications from different institutions around the world including University of Sheffield, United Kingdom, Negotiation studies certificates from University of California, Irvine Extension; and Yale University.
She is a child of God and a preacher of the gospel of Jesus. Her life principles are integrity, responsibility and transparency.

 

She shares her RUBY GIRL story with the team .

 

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Ikanna?

Ikanna is a young woman eternally saved by Jesus Christ. I believe that because of Christ’s permanent residence in me, I have all it takes to change the world, Africa in particular.

I am a final year Law undergraduate. I work closely with teenagers, women and girls to ensure teen inclusion in global and national development as well as create a voice for women and girls in Africa.

2. What inspired your writing at such an early age?

My dad! My dad is an ace writer and veteran journalist. I grew up reading his works (although by force, initially). Some privileges were attached to reading what daddy says you should read. So we read a lot and were inspired to write too. My younger brother is even a better writer than me. So, we all write. Good writers should also be good readers. Reading influenced my writing.
Then I began to look around me, my society and I found ills. I started infusing a voice against those ills into my writing. I’m someone who doesn’t see wrong and let it pass. So I began to speak through my writing all at a very young age. I wrote my first story book at 10 and I was encouraged to keep writing then I published when I was 19.

3. Your recently published a book (Black Syrma) what is the inspiration behind it and what does it entail?

Black Syrma is my voice against Female Genital Mutilation and Child Marriage. Black Syrma is a story of Kepuaolisa, a young African girl, tied in the complicated ropes of obnoxious African practices. I am an Africanist but I do not accept all practices just because I am an Africanist. As a matter of fact, I believe that we should do all we can to make the African tribe enjoyable so that we can have more people appreciate their heritage. Moving for the abrogation of ill practices is not the same as denying your heritage.
So, as African as I am, I consider ill customs unacceptable. Actually, there has been tremendous progress regarding eradicating Child marriage and female genital mutilation. They are now crimes where I come from but implementation is poor. Law enforcement agents will not go into the bedrooms of people to check whether girls have been mutilated or not. So I decided to take the approach of a mentality shift by publishing a book on that and leading a campaign in the local languages people understand. 

   “I began to look around me, my society and I found ills. I started infusingvoice against those ills into my writing”.

 

4. You led a Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) campaign, what was the response gotten from the outreach?

That campaign! We flooded the streets and a major market in Uyo, Akwa Ibom state, my Local Government Area. A lot of people said we were wasting our time because Uyo is a civilised town and nobody practices such culture but that’s a big lie! While we campaigned, people sent us out of their shops. They almost drenched us in water for preaching against what they have been practising. A woman told us that girls who are not mutilated end up becoming prostitutes. In Uyo town! I sent out message on social media for people to stop thinking FGM was not in Uyo town. It was and still is!
However, we had some positive reponses. Many people told us that they never knew that FGM had long term effects so they promised never to mutilate their children again. The high point for us was when a girl who was supposed to be mutilated the next day was saved from it because we spoke to her mother and she changed her mind about it.
Girls and women have a right to their sexual and reproductive health. Removing the clitoris or any form of mutilation deadens her organ, leads to complications and may ultimately lead to death. No woman deserves that.

5. As the LAWSAN President of UNIUYO, what has been your achievement so far in office?

Being a female President itself is one of my achievements because by that, I broke a jinx of women in my faculty always contesting for Vice-Presidential seats and reserving the 001 positions to the males.
Asides that, I have spent the majority of my tenure out of school because of the pandemic. Nevertheless, I have achieved all my manifestoes save for two of them which I will do by God’s grace when school resumes.
I carried out an internal restructuring by creating departments which never existed in LAWSAN Bar to make students feel closer to the government and carry out activities which they have interests in.
We also had a street campaign against Child Labour in Uyo before the lockdown. This campaign was informed by children selling purewater and drinks to us during school hours. It didn’t sit well with us when there are free/ low budget schools in Akwa Ibom state. So we carried out that campaign as our voice against it. We spoke to the guardians of these kids and they promised us to adjust.
During the lockdown, we have had 3 major virtual events including our Law and Social Change event which lasted all through the month of July, for 31 good days.
We also acquired slots for some of our members who have interest in Alternative Dispute Resolution to take a course on Commercial Mediation free of charge with Mediation Academy.
The pandemic lockdown didn’t deter us. We have done so much that I can’t tell all. Thank God.

“Being a female President itself is on of my achievements because by that, I broke a jinx of women in my faculty”

6. What has the Covid-19 pandemic affected the most and what did you learn from it?

My school! I should have bagged an LLB two months ago but it was halted. That’s painful but I was able to make good use of the lockdown by taking professional courses, doing virtual internships and making sure my life is moving forward and indeed it has been my busiest year. I do not have a wasted year.
I have learnt that there are so many things one has no control over but those things one can control, one must control them well.
I can’t make the government reopen schools but I can control what I do with my time this period. At least that is within my power.

7. Aside being an author, student and leader, how do you unwind and what else do you do?

(Laughs) My friends think I am a boring person. Well, that’s their business. I watch movies for fun. My favourite genres are comedy, crime & investigation, Christian and legal procedural movies.
I also like to go out with my friends. I know a lot of people but I have a very small circle. Hanging out with them helps me unwind. Some bars of chocolate have to be present though. I love chocolate.

8. What is your highest and lowest point as a student, author and leader and how did you overcome them?

I hate feeling overwhelmed. I could get so overwhelmed that I won’t be able to do anything. I just stare at the ceiling for hours, leaving overflowing heaps of items on my to-do list.
When it gets like that, I apportion time to each activity or work I have to do. That way, I have some control over my time and it eases off anxiety. Time management is key for me.

9. What would you like to change about yourself?

I am a limited edition. There is nobody in the world like me. I appreciate all my strengths and weakness as part of the package called Ikanna. However, I subject myself to the leadership of the Holy Spirit. He is in charge of my life. Whatever He doesn’t consider cool enough, He brings it to my notice and we work together to get better.

10. What are the challenges young writers and author face in Nigeria? Which improvement do suggest?

Money! Money is a serious challenge. Young writers, please don’t wait for funding before you manifest your gifts. Don’t wait for a competition with prize money attached. Don’t also wait for platforms! Create your platform. I private-published my first book when I was 19. I had already gathered an audience on Facebook. My cover design was sponsored by a fan. My editing was done for free by a professional editor who had seen my work and believed in me. I didn’t spend a dime.
Create your platform.

11. If you were the Chief Justice of Nigeria for a day, what would you do and change?

(Laughs) Rome was not built in a day so will the justice system in Nigeria not be built in a day. It’s a whole long process but we can take one step at a time. Our justice system requires a near revamp.
If I were to be given that position for a day however, I will communicate my vision to the stakeholders in that system. From there, work can begin.

12. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

Mmanti Umoh, An erudite management consultant, the woman with the highest Intelligence Quotient I know. Molested at an early age, Mmanti drove her way to becoming one of the most influential women in Africa. Her story and her life inspire me to never allow circumstances of life dictate what I become.

Indra Nooyi, former CEO of Pepsi Co. A friend of mine told me to look up one of her videos one day and I was wowed. That was the beginning of my admiration for her. She inspires me big time. She is a role model for real.

Dr. Utibe Alex- Okoro, my elder sister and a medic. This woman is an embodiment of the word ‘complete’. A complete woman. She inspires me daily to live my best life and supports me heavily. What’s more? I love her so much!

13. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

This pandemic has halted many things but nevertheless I hope to be pursuing a PhD in Law, living out purpose and enjoying the grace of God.

 

14. If you were given the opportunity to address a group of girls five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

Hey girls, be intentional! Stop wasting time sleeping, chatting away or allowing boys exploit you. Girl, you’re more! There’s a lot in you than you can see right now. God is just at your door. Open the door for Him and let Him handle you.
Be more!.

 

Joy Agbozi is the CEO of Jina’s dynasty ,a brand that is into Make up, fashion designing, social media publicity and catwalk training..

She is the Founder of CHARITY FASHION SHOW INTERNATIONAL..Which is a fashion show for charity where we provide a platform for young talents and use the proceeds for charity..

Agbozi Joy is Passionate about young people and she spends her time mentoring young people on the importance of believing in themselves and chasing their dreams.

Joy Agbozi is a Make up artist,fashion designer,model,actress ,social media publicist , catwalk instructor and also a multiple award winner..

Joy Agbozi has contested for various pageants and she is the current HERITAGE QUEEN AFRICA 2020.

She is a graduate of Linguistics and communication studies from the University of Port Harcourt.

She shares her Ruby Girl story with the team.

1. Let’s meet you, Who is Joy Agbozi?

Joy Agbozi is an indigene of Rivers state from Khana Local Government Area, a graduate of Linguistics and Communication Studies from the prestigious University of Port Harcourt.
She is the current HERITAGE QUEEN AFRICA 2020 WINNER.

She is an actress,model,fashion designer,make up artist ,social media publicist,pageant coach under her brand JINA’S DYNASTY. She is the founder of the Charity fashion show International, a brand that is quite dear to her heart because of her love for humanitarian services.

Joy is a foodie, I love food alot and I like trying out new delicacies.
I love reading novels,meeting people ,singing and dancing.
Lastly, I am an ambivert, both an introvert and extrovert.

 

2. Who and what inspired you to go into pageantry and catwalk?

Watching the Miss world competition every year inspired me to go into pageantry..I wanted to be that girl that will not only represent my country but also win the Miss World title.. I knew I didn’t have the money neither do I know where to start but I started with training myself and working on my social media.

3. As an entrepreneur how did you begin and what was your struggle?

I woke up one day and decided I needed a skill to add to what I know and I took up make up first because of my love for make up, went through the trainings and then I officially launched my brand.

Being an entrepreneur is never easy. It takes passion,determination and resilience to keep the business running even when you make little or no sales.

4. Charity Fashion Show International is not a vision everyone come up everyday to give back to charity through fashion shows. What exactly promoted this vision?

I am a very compassionate person and I get really drawn to people easily especially when I feel they have little or nothing to fall back on. I also see lots of young talents looking for a platform and having none.

I always have this desire to help when I see people who do not have.

The charity show was born out of my desire to help people in

 

Ogundowole Moyinoluwa popularly known as Moyinoluwa Gold is a graduate of Geography and Environmental Management from Tai Solarin University of Education.

Her passion for the growth and development of teenagers, orphans and vulnerable children birthed her NGO, Gold Heart Foundation.

She is a social development practitioner, a certified passionate teacher and digital skills trainer.

She shares her “Ruby Girl” story with the team.

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Moyinoluwa Gold?

My name is Ogundowole Moyinoluwa. I’m a graduate of Geography and Environmental Management from the premier university of education, Tai Solarin University of Education, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State. I’m an indigene of Owo in Ondo State. I am a social development practitioner, a certified passionate teacher, digital skills trainer. I’m passionate about the growth and development of teenagers, orphans and vulnerable children.

2. What birthed Gold heart foundation and what is it about?

I discovered in the course of studying the Bible that God is compassionate about the poor and the orphan. Jesus also demonstrated how much He loves children by always reaching out to them. Following in His footsteps brings me untold joy. I believe I was destined to do what I’m doing now. As I use my gifts properly, I’m lighting my world. By reaching out now to younger people, I’m doing my part to ensure that the future for our nation is better than what it is today.

3. In a society where most people shy away from taking up teaching as a profession. What prompted you to settle for it? And also major challenges encountered so far?

Talking is one of my strengths. I love passing down knowledge and school is an avenue to pass down knowledge I have received. I love children, school is also where I can easily get more children to relate with. So, my passion made me settle for teaching as a profession.

One of the major challenge is the school environment; I don’t find it so well to teach students theoretically without the practical aspect, this always made me unhappy though I still try my best to improvise by teaching beyond classroom using my phone, laptop and other instructional materials for effective teaching.

4. To what extent did your job as a teacher contribute to the startup of Gold Heart foundation?

I started Gold Heart Foundation before being certified as a teacher. But, when I began working in the school system, I was able to use teaching methodology in the running of the organization especially during our outreach to schools; which made it easier to connect to young people.

 

5. What are the challenges you faced when you started the foundation? Do you still experience them? And also how were you able to overcome them?

(Smiles) The naysayers jeer at me: ‘You’re just wasting your time and resources on these ones [the children &youth], they will never change. Enjoy life with your resources.’ I was never discouraged because my native aphorism clears it all up, “Emi lo ni pasan mi,” meaning, I own my passion. I believe and will continue to believe that every teenager has been specifically prepared to do something positive in this world. This is the reason I’m committed to helping them find that good thing and do it. I don’t experience it any longer because the vision is now tangible and many that didn’t buy into it then now support.

6. What has the Covid-19 pandemic opened your eyes to?

This pandemic is a blessing in disguise for me; instead of seeing the negative impact, all I see are opportunities, energy to diversify. It has opened my insight and foresight in all areas.

7. What are some challenges NGOs owned by young Nigerians face and how can it be mitigated?

Proper structuralization of vision; when the organization vision is not well structured, well planned and lay out, one can be frustrated. It can be mitigated by learning from social development practitioners experts, those that have experiences in that field and one should be open to learn with a shift mindset.

Another challenge is funding; people tend to speak well of what you’re doing but are not readily inclined to commit themselves financially. Due to this challenge, there is limit to the air of humanity we can spread abroad but through coined out strategies, creativity and networking, generating and accessing fund is possible.

 

8. What was growing up in a Nigerian home like for you? Did it in anyway contribute to everything you do now?

Growing up in typical Nigerian home (laughs) has a lot of influence on what I do today. My childhood was a lonely and bookish one. All that my parents were interested in was education—from school to lesson (even during holidays) and back to the home for personal coaching with my parents who were educationalist. I didn’t play much like other children did. So, it made me realize how important and valuable education is. More so. I can remember fighting for my friends, siblings and parents because I hated injustice and still do. The advocacy spirit has been in me from inception.

 

9. How do you cope with dealing and managing adolescents?

There is something I’d train myself on; is to love unconditionally. When one shows genuine love to the adolescents, they embrace it and submit to you. So, I love and appreciate them. Also, I gave my time and resources in studying and researching on child’s psychology, so, I can and relate with them better, since they’re the target population I have decided to settle with.

10. If you were to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what would you change?

Uhmm… I will invest in the education sector by providing a conducive environment for learners and teachers and recommend that the school curriculum be reviewed to include innovative and entrepreneurial courses alongside leadership development. There is so much we can learn from using the internet to our benefit. With these, our students will be equipped with skills needed to navigate the wider world.

11. How do you juggle running an NGO, teaching and other engagements?

Time management is key. It is not easy but over time I have learnt how to prioritize. Everything, I am doing and involved in are all interwoven, that’s makes it so easier for me to cope with because I enjoy every bit of my engagements. But, currently NGO work is demanding I need to stop teaching in school environment to focus more on the NGO so I will not loose focus and be more productive. Moreover, in the NGO I still teach.

12. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

Mother Mary Teresa of her blessed memory; because, she devoted herself working among the poorest of the poor in the slums, taking care of for those persons nobody was prepared to look after even when funds not forthcoming.

Folorunso Alakija (Rose of Sharon Foundation); because of her philanthropic interest in helping the widows and orphans through scholarships and business grants.

Kehinde Okoroafor (Makeme Elegant Foundation); because of her passion and love for the less priviledged and the way she went out of her way to seek for support for upcoming young people in the society in order for them to be visible and relevant.

13. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

In the next five years if God tarries, I will in Gold Heart Foundation International headquarter as a Social development practitioner consultant; consulting for individuals and organization locally, National and international.

14. If you were given the opportunity to address a group of young females ten years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

My dear energetic young female, you can be more. You’ve everything to be more inside of you which God has deposited in you in form of gift, skills, talent; unleash it and make sure you walk with the right set of people to be more. You’re unique and always celebrate your uniqueness, serve your God accordingly.

Ifeoma is a Law graduate of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) and currently rounding off her Law school post graduate studies at Nigerian Law School, Kano.

She loves meeting new people, has an interest in acquiring new skills and she has a passion for fashion designing.

She shares her Ruby Girl story with the team.

1. Let’s meet you. Who is Ifeoma Laura?

I am Udeh Ifeoma Laura, a graduate of Law from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-ife, currently rounding off my Law school post graduate study at the Nigerian Law school, Kano.
I love to meet people, make dresses and learn new things, acquire new skills .I also love children…. when they’re not crying.

2. A favourite quote?

“No matter what you’re going through in life, eat! Problem no dey finish “

3. What new thing have to learnt or been involved in since the pandemic?

I wanted to learn about Blockchain but Law School is very very demanding and although I’ve looked at it several times, I can’t say I’ve actually learnt it. Either ways, I’ll not stop trying.
However, the pandemic has taught me that our plans are nothing in the sphere of things and thus, we must cherish everything we have and live like it’s our last. Because it’s really one chance at life we have.

4. You are a graduate of Law, what prompted you to venture into the Fashion industry?

I’m very good with anything that has to do with handiwork. I learn very fast too. I picked up sewing in my SS3 although, I’ve been sketching since junior secondary. So, sewing came easily and I learnt it on my own. I was self taught. For now, I’ve not commercialized it but I have that in mind. I’ll definitely make money out of it because I like money.

5. How were you able to juggle education with fashion designing?

It wasn’t an issue for me because I wasn’t doing it in school. I was only sewing for myself and family ; so it wasn’t really a distraction .

6. What has the COVID-19 pandemic affected you?

My Law School!
We’ve resolved to doing online classes and I personally do not like online teaching. It’s really not my forte, especially for a period of 4 months! It really affected my routine and plans but this too shall pass and there’ll be good stories to tell.

7. As a Law graduate, what was your best and most challenging moments back in school?

My final year was Glorious! Glory to God!
My result was fantastic, I was heading an association and we won Best Chambers of the year. Heading the Chambers was the most challenging time of my life and coupled with my Academics, it was a whole lot of load to carry. Thanks to God, I aced both and I’m happy I had that experience.

8. What was growing up in a Nigerian home like? Did it contribute to things you do now?

Growing up has my fondest memories. I’m blessed with fantastic parents and uncles , aunties, relatives and grandparents who care so much . Raising me was a collective effort and it really shaped who I am now because , everything that I do and believe in now can be traced to my family. They did a great job!

9. If you were to be the President of the Nigerian Bar Association,what would you change?

The first thing; the RPC ( Rules of professional conduct)
I’ll call for a new RPC to meet contemporary needs.
My next interest will be the Nigerian law school, it’s grades and marking system.
These 2 will be my first projects. Others will follow .

10. One thing you’ll like to change about yourself?

My patience. I have too much patience for one human being. I’ll like to divide it into 10 and give some people; especially Lagosians.

11. Mention 3 women who inspire you and why?

My Mother: There’s only one word that describes her, and it’s Excellence! She’s an all rounder. There’s nothing she can’t do.

My Eldest Sister Obianuju:
She doesn’t settle for less. She’s a fighter and a goal getter. Nothing can stop her from doing what she sets her mind to do.

Beyoncé: She works way too hard and way too good. She has no competition and she’s perfect in my eye.
I love her doggedness and resilience with work and with family. She’s a Queen.

12. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

  1. Honestly, out of Nigeria and in the United Kingdom.

Dear young one, there’s so much ahead of you. Don’t let social media fool you, nothing comes easy. Anything worth doing, is worth doing well. School is not scam ; Take your life seriously and enjoy it while you have it.
The world is your stage, go out and Win!