We are glad and proud to announce that our Executive Director, Adebanke Ilori will be joining the 2019 set of the Mandela Washington Fellows. Adebanke is one of 700 outstanding young leaders from Sub-Saharan Africa who will be provided with “the opportunity to hone their skills at a U.S. college or university with support for professional development after they return home” according to the YALI Website.
At Raising New Voices Initiative, Adebanke has led our team since 2018 and at a time when Nigeria was headed towards the general elections. With a focus of our initiative on driving youth participation in politics and citizen engagement, Adebanke’s leadership was critical in driving our #BreakTheHold campaigns which garnered support for 25 young Nigerians under 35 who were running for the House of Representatives across the six geo-political zones.
Beyond the election season, Adebanke’s leadership has also proved very instrumental in planning and executing our New Voices Citizen Fellowship in Osun State and securing the support of our partners at the Friedrich Ebert Stitfung Foundation towards achieving this goal.
At RNVi, we believe that young people have an important role to play in the politics of our nation both during and after the election season and deepening our democracy. With an increasing youth bulge and about 60% of Nigerians under 25, our work in raising the awareness and starting the conversation about youth participation in the politics of our nation is really an important one.
This is what drives our mission to continue to support the emergence of new voices and new leaders who understand the need for development for our country. Adebanke continues to show leadership in achieving this mission and we are proud and grateful to the Fellowship for recognising her leadership with this opportunity. We are sure that this fellowship will drive her work and contribution to our initiative and ultimately the deepening of our democracy as a nation.
In her absence, Director of Programs, Hassan Olanrewaju will take over as administrative lead in Nigeria.
Raising New Voices Initiative