Welcome to M-A-Y! Miracles Await You
OpportunityDesk is pleased to introduce the Young Person of the Month (YPOM) for May 2015, Victoria Ibiwoye from Nigeria. The 21-year-old youth leader is currently pursuing a Law degree at the University of Ibadan and is the founder of the OneAfricanChild Initiative. Making good use of her online presence, Victoria has benefitted from several international trainings, some of which she found on Opportunity Desk.
Her drive is drawn from her personal experiences from childhood. Read her full story below and be inspired!
Victoria Ibiwoye is 21-year-old Nigerian pursuing a Law degree at the University of Ibadan. She is also the pioneer of OneAfricanChild Initiative, an organisation founded to help (marginalised) children discover their self-identity through quality education and empowerment.
Soon to graduate in Law, she plans to build on the experiences gained within and outside her degree to develop a career in International Development; serving as a policy maker/diplomat for her country, Nigeria. She enjoys working with local and international organisations that provides platform for her to maximise my youth impact and be a strong voice for others.
Miss Ibiwoye was a presenter for Junior Chamber International University of Ibadan in 2012 and also served as the JCI Director of International Opportunities from 2013 to 2014. She is currently the Local Coordinator for African Students for Liberty (ASFL), Youth Ambassador for Half The Sky Movement, TEDx Youth Day Reporter for Nigeria and Mentor at the annual Activate Youth Camp.
Victoria has been able to develop her leadership competence by seizing other training and volunteer opportunities that allow for young people to be co-learners and well as active contributors to the development of their community. One of such opportunities is serving as an Intern for the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) from January to March 2015.
On how she started her journey
As a teenager, Victoria had a strong desire to meet the needs of the society around her. She soon realised that she could not help all the people at once. However, she was willing to start with the little she had and with atleast one person. This explains the name One-African-Chiid.
Her drive can be traced to personal experiences from her childhood. She tells us,
“I could not realise my full potentials because I was lost as to who I was and what I can achieve. I wanted to help the children in my community discover their identity and realize their potentials through quality education and empowerment.”
She was motivated by Rashad Cartwright’s quote: “We must motivate our children early with the knowledge that came to us late”.
Victoria started by educating two children from her community, without money or financial assistance. But she was able to share her heart of love and the knowledge she had acquired overtime. “I shared with them my knowledge on the diversity of Africa, this way we were all ‘re-connected to our roots and it felt so beautiful to see from where we are coming to where we are heading. I also spoke in practical ways on issues regarding Self-Awareness and Peace-Building. It was wonderful to teach what they would otherwise not learn at school.”
Doing what she loves and giving her best, Miss Ibiwoye was able to attract several other youths beyond Africa to support her project. For her, it soon shifted from ‘me’ to ‘we’. Together with her team, they built a community driven project to create a sustainable future for children. They have been able to impact children in Africa and diaspora with 21st century skills, empowering them to address the needs of their communities through the support we provide them.
Some of Victoria’s Achievements
Victoria tells Opportunity Desk:
I have applied for several international trainings but got selected for a few! I was disappointed each time I got turned down but I also found an opportunity in this, to ‘be better’. Gradually, I learnt to improve on my applications, my sentences were better structured. For each application, I also ensured that I applied days ahead of the deadline so there’s enough time to edit or research more about the program I intent to apply.
Unlike many other youths I have met, I do not have a long list. However, from the few trainings I have benefited from, I saw that God was preserving the best for me and I am grateful for this.
Some of the trainings Victoria has participated in include:
- Global Youth Advocacy Workshop on Global Citizenship Education (GCED) organised by the UN Secretary General’s Education First Initiative and UNESCO APCEIU, which was held in South Korea.
- Tech Camp West Africa organised by the U.S Embassy (Ghana for) 100 young civil leaders in West Africa held in Ghana.
- Capacity Building Workshop on Peace Building and Non-violent Means of Conflict Resolution organised by the North-South Centre of The Council of Europe, held in Nigeria.
- United States Institute of Peace (USIP) Generation Change Training in Uganda next month.
On what Inspires her
Victoria has always had this vision to showcase the beauty of Africa to the world. Africa is not only beautiful because of its natural resource, the real image of Africa can be found in its human resource, the people. Together, we have all the potentials we need for the world we want.
She is inspired to see young people discover themselves at a very early age, applying their creative and innovative ideas to create solutions for real world problems. It also inspires her to see youths working to create more opportunities for others, creating a world that is peaceful and sustainable.
Her final words for Youth
Discover your unique identity and be visionary! We need this to be at our best for the world. having a clear vision and following through will move your mission to mission accomplished.
Be a value creator. you’ll be remembered for what you did and not what you say you’ll do.
Who will be the Next Young Person of the Month?
You can be the next Opportunity Desk Young Person of the Month! All you have to do is get a friend to recommend your work or fill out the nomination form here. We want to use the platform to recognize and celebrate the efforts of amazing young people around the world. O! And you must be an active Opportunity Desk member, either as a fan, reader or subscriber!