Samuel Jackson Iboro, Chief Executive Officer, Royalty Inspire
Right after I received the 2014 Future Africa Leaders Award, given by the Future Africa Leaders Award Foundation, I was selected to be a part of an MOOC training organized by the United State Consulate on Leadership, Management and Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century. The Mandela Washington Fellows shared so much, primarily emphasising the place of social entrepreneurs and innovators in shaping our world. Recognising the importance, I realized I needed further training from an organization that would help me meet my objectives. So, I went online, did my research and soon after, I discovered LEAP Africa.
LEAP’s Youth Development Training Programme (YDTP) funded by the Peoples Republic of China got my attention; the vision was quite clear.
Excited by my discovery, I immediately applied as a voluntary trainer;went through the interview process and got selected.
During the Training of Trainers (ToT) under the YDTP, I was exposed to many realities. It was one of the best moments of my life. I learnt that an effective leader needs to inspire, influence and persuade people. To do this, he or she needs to communicate and relay key messages effectively – this was critical for me. The training served to remind me that good leaders do not only observe problems, they also develop implementation strategies for solving those problems. Aside the esteemed LEAP facilitators who shared with us, my co-trainers also challenged me, as I got to learn about their various impact driven initiatives in their communities.
Even more, my company, Royalty Inspire got a boost. We discovered that there was a career choice challenge faced by high school students. To tackle the situation, we started a Meet-A-Mentor Career forum where we engage teenagers with professionals who share from their wealth of experience and success stories. This also avails the students the opportunity to ask questions on a more personal level. The forum has so far benefitted about 7,000 high school students and the beneficiaries have come to understand the career path that best fits them.
I am the leader that I am today because of the YDTP. So far, I have been able to host the first Young Africa Leaders Conference in my community with over 15,556 viewers online from 88 countries on Ceflix online Television and 1,216 high school delegates live at the venue in Lagos. The conference helped to create a culture of success and positive leadership among the students and provided tools for attaining heights with integrity. I have had the opportunity to build several entrepreneurial and leadership capacities for undergraduates in Ekiti State University, in partnership with 9tea inspire and Yaba College of Technology both in Nigeria.
I have been a support to the Slum to Classroom Initiative of Advocate for Change group where literacy and life skills activities are provided for young people in hard to reach Makoko community in Nigeria.
For my impact and outstanding commitment to community development in Alimosho where I reside; I received the “2015 Alimosho 55 Heroes Award”. I was also recognized at the President Obama “Young Africa Leadership Initiative” (YALI) Nigeria Award in both Education and Youth Advocacy Category. I am also a Green Champion recipient of President Obama (YALI) for facilitating the Understanding of Climate change in schools and communities in Lagos, Nigeria.
This year, I have been nominated for both the Lagos Prestige Education Award, and the “2015 Educational Personality of the Year”, which will hold later in the year.
It’s indeed been a remarkable journey and I am grateful to the LEAP team for the insightful YDTP case studies, interactive exercises and games that formed my thinking. Thankfully I am now a better leader and a better facilitator, especially when it comes to keeping track of the main agenda.
Today, I am delighted to be part of the change movement in Africa.
Samuel Jackson Iboro is a Leadership & Career Success Catalyst. He is the Chief Executive Officer of Royalty Inspire; a company that helps teenagers particularly in private and public schools to enhance their personal development and academic excellence.
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