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Empowerment Training For Winners Of Vision Of The Child Competition

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Winner, Ashaka Ihona being presented with his prize; Regional Manager, Diamond Bank, Mr. Benson Oraelosi (left); Foluke Michael and Mrs. Nike Ekundaiye

Winner, Ashaka Ihona being presented with his prize; Regional Manager, Diamond Bank, Mr. Benson Oraelosi (left); Foluke Michael and Mrs. Nike Ekundaiye

Empowerment training has come the way of the 12 winners in the 2015 edition of the yearly Vision of the Child (VoTC) competition, as they will be hosted to a series of activities from July 27 through early next month.

The winners in the two categories – literary and painting – will be hosted by the VoTC organising team led by Foluke George to activities that include training at Microsoft Nigeria, special exhibition of the winning work in the painting category, special visit to project sponsors Diamond Bank, Microsoft Nigeria Honeywell Noodles and Airtel Nigeria.

Others include training and mentorship sessions (reading, writing and IT) and special interview with selected TV and radio stations.

Earlier in April at a glamorous post-event Gala Award Night, Master Ashaka Victory Ihona from Ajara Grammar School, Badagry was declared the best student-painter in the prestigious competition that held as part of the 2015 Lagos Black Heritage Festival (LBHF) 2015. Tamaramiebi Akika from Corona School picked the winning prize in the literary category with her essay on the competition theme ‘The Road To Sambisa.’

Child painters displaying their works

Child painters displaying their works

The award ceremony was held at the Civic Centre on Friday, April 24 in the presence of parents, teachers and eminent citizens of Lagos led by Erelu Abiola Dosumu and distinguished painter and textile designer, Chief (Mrs.) Nike Okundaiye. There were also chief executives of the sponsoring corporate organisations from Diamond Bank (Regional Manager, Mr. Benson Oraelosi, and Divisional Head Corporate Communications, Mrs. Ayona Trimnell; Airtel (Head of High Value Experiences, Mrs. Sarwi Rahaman); Honeywell Noodles’ MD, Mr. Lanre Jaiyeola and Divisional Managing Director, Dr. Nino Ozara, and Microsoft Company (Public Sector Director, Mr. Hakeem Adeniji-Adele and Citizenship Manager, Mr. Olusola Amusan.

Ashaka came out tops from 30 finalists from 35 schools that participated in the statewide competition. Shittu Ololade from Reagan Memorial School, Yaba, came second, while the third place prize went to Anthony Blessing from Masterhand Academy, Badagry. Fourth position went to Anjola Olanrewaju also of Masterhand Academy, Badagry; Amosu Abraham Akinlomo from Betterfuture College, Badagry was fifth, while Okwuchukwu Ivy From Lagos State Model College, Badagry was sixth.

Festival Consultant Prof. Wole Soyinka with some of the students

Festival Consultant Prof. Wole Soyinka with some of the students

In the Literary category, which had the participants writing either essay, poem or short story on the theme, Titiloye Tobi from Topo Grammar School, Badagry came 2nd; Utibe Ekpeyong from Sacred Heart College, Apapa was third while Etina Samuel Onche from Danvic Leaders Academy, Apapa, came fourth and Princess Marinay from Park College, Apapa, Angela Obinwa from Pampers Private school took the 5th and 6th prizes respectively.

The were decided by a panel of eminent judges including (for painting) renowned artists Chief Nike Okundaiye, ex-Commissioner for Culture, Ondo State, Mr. Tola Wewe and the painter, art activist Ndidi Dike. The literary segment had among others writer and educationist, Mr. Folu Agoi, teacher and education activist Mr. Segun Almaroof and publisher and child worker Mrs. Adenike Arigbabu.

The competition’s theme ‘The Road To Sambisa’ designed by Festival Consultant and Nobel laureate in Literature, Professor Wole Soyinka, was deliberately chosen to reflect on the tragedy of the infamous ‘Chibok Girls’ episode in which over 276 girls were kidnapped overnight from their school in Chibok town in the Northeastern part of the country.

Festival Secretary, Foluke Michael and Soyina with some of the pupils

Festival Secretary, Foluke Michael and Soyina with some of the pupils

At the award night, the winners took home prizes from the various sponsors. Diamond Bank presented winners in the painting category with cash prizes (1st Prize, N250,000; 2nd, N200,000; 3rd, N180,000; 4th, N150,000; 5th, N120,000; and 6th,N100,000 respectively) and gift bags for all the finalists. The cash prize was presented by the bank’s Regional Manager, Mr. Benson Oraelosi

Honeywell presented cash prizes of N100,000 each to the six winners from the Literary category with cartons of all its products to all the winners and 63 participants. The prizes were presented by the Managing Director, Mr. Lanre Jaiyeola, assisted by Divisional Managing Director, Mr. Nino Ozara; Executive Director, Marketing, Mr. Benson Evbwuoman, and Human Resource Manager, Mr. Tunde Adebayo.

Microsoft gave the 12 winners from both literary and painting categories Tablets. The presentation was made by the Public Sector Director, Mr. Hakeem Adeniji-Adele and Citizenship Manager for the company, Mr. Olusola Amusan

Airtel Nigeria presented gifts in backpacks to the 63 finalists including the winners.

While addressing the finalists, shortly before the winners were announced, the Head of LBHF Secretariat and Coordinator of Vision of The Child Project, Mrs. Foluke George, said, “For making it into the final of the prestigious competition, you are all winners. So if you are not among the final list of winners, do not feel bad. You should learn even at this stage that we all cannot be winners in a competition, and that you must develop the mind to accept defeat in any contest you find yourself”.


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