The 2016 Green Ambassadors’ Training

The Annual Green Ambassadors’ training was held on the 7th of November at The Green Center in Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo. This year’s training was focused on Agriculture with the theme ‘GET YOUR HANDS DIRTY!’ Lawrence Afere, the founder of the Spring Board Farms and a Washington Mandela Fellow, was invited as the guest speaker to speak on the topic of discussion. Various Schools were also invited along with their agricultural science teachers to participate in the program. The schools included; Homaj Secondary School, St. Monica Grammar School, St. Louis Grammar School, Awosika College, and Ekinmogun Grammar School. 

The Student and Ambassadors were given a platform to ask questions and also contribute more to the topic of discussion. A Solar lantern and two Green T-shirts were given to three Students, one from St. Monica Grammar School and two from Awosika College as a result of the correct answers given from the questions thrown in by the Green Associate, Owoeye Abolade. The Dean of School of Science, Dr. F.O Balogun and the Head of Chemistry Department, Dr. Babajide were also present at the program. Dr. Babajide J.O spoke on ‘biofuel.'

Green Ambassadors and Ministers shared different ideas, opinions, and suggestions as to how agriculture can be incorporated into the school’s system. Sipasi Olalekan coordinator of the L’Afrika Integrated Farms at Ibadan sent a representative on his behalf to speak to the ambassadors on Agriculture as the only way out of the situation in Nigeria. As a take home package, seeds of the teak tree was given to every individual present to plant in their environment.

The Green Campus Initiative Features in the Nigeria Alternative Energy Expo 2016

Since 2010, the Nigeria Alternative Energy Expo (#NAEE2016) has provided a platform with a view of sharing experiences on decentralized renewable and alternative energy systems, finding and implementing solutions to energy access challenges in Nigeria, and increasing opportunities for both formal and informal dialogue among government representatives, pan-African organizations, policy makers, MDA’s, researchers, academia, manufacturers, investors, civil societies, and consumers. This year’s edition (the 6th edition) which was held at the Shehu Musa Yar’adua Conference Centre, Abuja, from the 14th – 16th October was co-hosted by the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Power, Sustainable Energy Practitioners Associations of Nigeria (SEPAN), and the African SustainableEnergy Association (ASEA).

Themed, “Embracing renewable energy to tackle Nigeria’s economic challenges”, #NAEE2016 attracted speakers, panelists, and facilitators who all had professional and personal experiences and interests that provided them with unique credentials to be listened to.  Take for example, the French Ambassador to Nigeria; HE Denys Gauer, who called for effective collaboration between sectors, the Finland Ambassador to Nigeria; HE Pirjo Suomela-Chowdhury, who harped on moral attitude for sustainability, the CEO of DARE; Professor Yahaya Ahmed, who walked participants through the UNFCC and the Save 80 cooking system that does not contribute to Indoor Air Pollution (IAP), and the Head, Africa-EU Energy Partnership; Engr. Ina-de-Visser who highlighted the need to support market development for mesoscale renewable energy technologies in Nigeria and Africa. With over twenty-two manufacturers in renewable energy sector exhibiting their products and services, the Expo also focused on the achievement of the Sustainable Developmental Goals, SDGs.

Engaging University Students for a Sustainable and Better Future

Strong advocates and recommendations by relevant climate and environmental groups have continuously raised the need for real capacity building for universities, especially those in Africa. #NAEE2016 responded to this for the first time and took a step further to engage and empower Nigerian undergraduate students, so as to enhance their contribution to sustainable development and social transformation. This was done in partnership with The Green Campus Initiative, GCI – Nigeria’s leading and first campus-based environmental advocacy organization with a presence in thirty-eight (38) universities across the country. This step was guided by the realities facing students in environmental and social sciences, and those that have sufficient reason for interest in the renewable energy sector, and anchored in the belief that students are forces of equality and good governance, catalysts for global consensus building; and essential resources for sustainable development and poverty eradication.

Adenike Akinsemolu; Founder of GCI and Board member of SEPAN, led GCI Universities Ambassadors and Associates to the expo, where they had a session on the second day that comprised of a plenary and an oral presentation. Tagged, “The World is Going Green, Are You?”, and moderated by Owoeye Abolade; a Public Health expert and Environmental Biologist with the Federal University of Technology Akure, those on the plenary were Dr. Segun Adaju; CEO of Consistent Energy and Global Advisor to GCI, Dr. Amina Batagarawa; an Architecture Lecturer with Ahmadu Bello University Zaria and Global Advisor to GCI, Hamzat Lawal of Connected Development, CODE, and Ibrahim Majidadi; a Law Student of ABU Zaria. The epoch-making plenary and oral presentation which was done by Odunayo Ayodeji; a Mathematics Student of Adeyemi College of Education, focused on discussions about the SDGs in Nigeria, effective participation of youths and students, meaningful equity of policies, engagement at all levels of decision-making, and the works ofThe Green Campus Initiative across Nigerian universities.

The highpoint of GCI’s session was the recitation of the Green Pledge where all participants promised to live more sustainable and teach others on how to. The organizers and delegates present affirmed they learned a lot during their feedback comments. Also, they shared the thoughts of the outcomes of the plenary that real actions need to be done to make sure young people and student advocates are supported with finance, mentorship, and resources as 80% of students that completed the event registration online could not attend due to inadequate funds for travel and accommodation. Notwithstanding, #NAEE2016 engagement is a good indicator that the Nigerian society is preparing students to become competent innovators and leaders that would shape the renewable energy, environmental and power sector.

After the session, students were led on an excursion to the Green Estate in Garki, Abuja. The estate, a first of its kind in Nigeria, is reputed to have been running on solar and wind energy sources for the past 18 months, and is completely off the national power grid! The laudable project sets a standard for the feasibility of alternative energy in Nigeria and the promises of delivering on the climate action mandate in support of a sustainable world.


OGHENECHOVWEN, Oghenekevwe Christopher is an Ambassador of GCI and a third year BTech Student of Meteorology and Climate Science (FUTA). For more information, please contact greenthecampus@gmail.com or tweet to @c_chovwen

GCI Green Personality of the Month; Sipasi Olalekan Ayodele

It’s the little things citizens do. That’s what will make the difference. My little thing is planting trees.
— Wangari Maathai (Environmental Conservationist and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate)

It is exhilarating to interact with young people who believe that trees are planted for the future. Ayodele Sipasi Olalekan - an innovative farmer and environmental activist - is one of such people. Sipasi is the founder of L'Afrika Integrated Farms. One of his innovations; the Mobile Kitchen Garden, earned him the 2015 Hidden Eco-Hero Award of Eco-Tunza Generation and Samsung Engineering. Recently, he was listed among the Top 10 Go Green in the City Ambassador of Schneider Electric. Also, he is a Global Shaper of the World Economic Forum, focusing on Global Goal 13; 'Climate Action'.

Having B.Tech and M.Sc degrees relating to best agriculture practices, and being a speaker of eight indigenous and international languages, including Kiswahili and French, makes him stand out. Sipasi has impacted the growing environmental space in Nigeria, especially through his works in rural areas.

For this month; September 2016 (which is also his birth month), Sipasi is GCI's Green Personality, and Oghenechovwen C. Oghenekevwe reached out to him to ask few, interesting questions.

What aspects of your job do you particularly enjoy?

I enjoy engaging rural areas: training farmers and young people on environmentally friendly living, and sustainable best agricultural practices. Running these trainings using only Local Content Initiative (solving problems with available resources), makes it particularly enjoyable for me. Use of these local resources allows rural dwellers relate to the main issues.

In a lead up to the 2016 World Environmental Day, WED, you trained a total of 3,115 youths on environmental responsibility and sourced for 12,000 Khaya Senegalensis seeds for tree planting. What challenges did you face doing these?

Majority of the people in communities I trained did not have a knowledge of environmental issues and climate change. Because of this, it was difficult making them understand that climate change and its effects were real. Also, some parents were reluctant to allow their wards participate, as they were of the opinion that it distracted them from academic work, other people did not show up once they realized monetary gains were not available, and some participants did not want to get down on the dirty soil to plant. Most challenging was the inadequacy of volunteers.

In the report of your contributions to the WED celebrations, you raised a new perspective about how the struggle for survival and economic surge causes Nigerians to neglect nature. Is this neglect only peculiar amongst young people? Please throw more light on this.

Protecting our environment for the benefit of the present and future generations is an all-important and collective responsibility. What we have today is different: environmental neglect exists and it cuts across all ages. The economy and the environment are linked. If Nigeria is to have a comfortable, stable, economy, all activities, or inputs, which would lead to this steady state must be done in our own environment. For example, setting up large-scale industries would only be beneficial to the economy if it does not pollute the environment –air, lands, and water. To me, this is where most Nigerians miss it. In their bid to balance their standard of living, they ignore the ‘environmental side-effects’.

What do you regard as the most pressing problem the environmental sector in Nigeria needs to address?

Waste dumping should be dealt with across Nigeria. It does not make for cleaner and sustainable environments. We should focus on waste management and waste-to-wealth empowerment.


Profile:

Oghenekevwe, an ambassador at the Green Campus Initiative, currently serves on the World Oceans Day Youth Advisory Council. He loves writing and connecting with people, and he prefers his Garri with chilled water. Engage him via email: chrischovwen@gmail.com  Facebook: /kevwe.chovwen  or Twitter: @c_chovwen

 

Green Campus Initiative partners with UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN)

We are happy to be in partnership with the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN).The Sustainable Development Solutions Network goals include; no poverty, zero hunger, good health, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, responsible consumption and production, decent work and economic growth. Below is the letter of partnership sent from SDSN.

UN Partnership Letter

It is with great pleasure that I write to inform you that the Executive Committee of the cc has enthusiastically approved the Green Institute, Adeyemi College of Education for membership. We are very happy to have you join the Network and look forward to working together in support of sustainable development.

In the coming months, we look forward to finding further means of collaboration on research, Solutions Initiatives, and policy work.

In the meantime, please let us know if you have suggestions for joint initiatives or requests for how the SDSN might be able to support your work. Please also feel free to contact Lauren or me at any time if you have questions regarding your membership in the SDSN.

With best wishes,

Eve de la Mothe Karoubi

Manager
Sustainable Development Solutions Network

www.unsdsn.org

                                                             

Minister of Education Educate Green Kids on Environmental Sustainability

Children are the future leaders, train up a child in the right way, and he/she will not depart from it. Ambassadors and Ministers of the Green Campus Initiative (GCI) are making sure the foundation in sustaining the environment is made solid for the next generation. The Honourable Minister of Education and Advocacy Odunayo Ayodeji Aliu addressed the Homaj School Green Kids Club on Environmental Sustainability. She also presented waste bins to the cleanest classrooms in the school. The kids are taught on how to; recycle waste, make the environment clean and also plant trees in their school compounds. The GKC has extended its tentacles to various schools in Ondo city.

od3.jpg

The club aims at creating awareness and teaching the younger generation ways of preserving and conserving our natural resources. In GKC, elections are conducted by members to elect the Prime Minister and Green Police to ensure the proper activities of the members and check improper waste disposal and management amongst students and pupils of the school. Green Kids Club, making the world a better place to live in.

Win up to $8000 in Film4Climate Video Competition!

We are excited to inform you that our partner, Connect4Climate just launched a Film Competition to promote sustainability in the creative industries through active engagement with young people in finding solutions to climate change.

The Film4Climate Global Video Competition invites aspiring filmmakers from around the world to express their vision for a sustainable future by creating a short film or video about climate action. The competition calls on filmmakers to explore Climate Action, the 13th goal under the UN Sustainable Development Goals, emphasizing what individuals and communities around the world are doing to promote action, offer solutions and inspire positive change to combat climate change and its impacts. Filmmakers are encouraged to deploy personal narratives that explore fundamental questions such as: What does climate change mean to me? What actions am I taking to mitigate the advance of global warming? What is my Climate Action message to the world?

Videos must be submitted as Public Service Announcements that are less than one minute, or as a Short Film, between one and five minutes.

Bernardo Bertolucci (The Conformist, Last Tango in Paris) will serve as the jury president of the competition. Bertolucci is joined on the jury by Oscar-winning Directors and Producers as well as luminaries of cinema, communications and the environment, including Mohamed Nasheed, climate champion and former president of the Maldives, producer Lawrence Bender (An Inconvenient Truth, Pulp Fiction), director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy (Saving Face, A Girl in the River), director Louie Psihoyos (The Cove, Racing Extinction), director Fernando Meirelles (City of God, The Constant Gardener), director Robert Stone (Radio Bikini, Pandora’s Promise), director Mika Kaurismaki (Zombie and the Ghost Train), director Pablo Trapero (Carancho, El Clan), producer Martin Katz (Hotel Rwanda), Ann Hornaday, Chief Film Critic of The Washington Post, Sheila Redzepi, Vice President for External and Corporate Relations, World Bank Group, Moroccan director Farida Benlyazid (Frontieras, Keïd Ensa),  Carole Tomko, General Manager and Creative Director of Microsoft co-founder Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions, Maria Wilhelm, Executive Director of the Avatar Alliance Foundation, Pat Mitchell, President and CEO of the Paley Center for Media, Rose Kuo, CEO and Artistic Director of the Qingdao International Film Festival, and Mark Lynas, author and environmentalist (The God Species, Six Degrees).

The competition is open to filmmakers between 14 and 35 years old. Submissions will be open through September 15, 2016. For full competition rules and eligibility requirements, please visit: film4climate.net or connect4climate.org.

Connect4Climate Knowledge Partners with the Green Campus Initiative

The Green Campus Initiative would like to make an official announcement of her partnership with an organization called Connect4Climate. This organization was launched by World Bank and the Italian Ministry of Environment, and the GEF in collaboration with more than 140 global partners in September 2011. Connect4Climate (C4C) is a campaign, a coalition, and a global community that takes on climate change promotes solutions and empowers action.

Since its launch, Connect4Climate has built an aggregate online community of a million fans and a coalition of about 400 partners committed to climate change communication and action. Connect4Climate partners include UN agencies, climate programs in leading academic institutions, private sector organizations, media, NGOs, and CSOs.

Connect4Climate's knowledge partnership program focuses on sharing and cross-promoting activities and creating new connections in creative ways that will amplify each other’s initiatives and projects through social media, web platforms, speaking opportunities or joint events, depending on our partners’ engagement and focus on common areas. 

The Green Campus Initiative is very pleased to accept this partnership and look forward to a mutually beneficial and long lasting relationship.

 

Green Personality of the Month: Psalm Oluwaseyi David

The Green Personality of this month is Mr. Psalm Oluwaseyi David. He is a 400level student of the Federal University of Technology, Akure. David is a multi-talented young man who loves not just to get his hands busy but also to impact and improve his immediate environment. He started a movement in his school with some network of co bright minds called My Navigator, an errand service within and outside the campus. His team also has a brand called CreatvColony.

They hosted a program in FUTA last year tagged ‘evolve’ and a 2,500 capacity hall was fully packed. David is also into reusing and recycling waste plastics. He was at the Green Centre in Adeyemi College of Education last month to teach some ambassadors

Inspired by his works, the Green Team is pleased to present to you, Psalm Oluwaseyi David of CreatvColony, as the Green Personality of the month of June.

Here are the highlights of our interview with him

CAN WE MEET YOU PLEASE?

I am Psalm Oluwaseyi David, creatively known as PsalmDavid and corporately as Oluwaseyi David, an indigene of Ijan Ekiti in Ekiti State, born and bred in the cold city of Jos, Plateau State. I am presently an undergraduate student of the Department of Estate Management of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State.

WHAT DO YOU DO AND WHY DO YOU DO IT?

I am a Serial Entrepreneur, managing businesses in lines of creative and performing art, service provider and also a business coach/consultant.

I became engaged in all these when I discovered that God has given me the ability to handle more. (Remember the parable of the talents? “to some he gave one, some two, and to some he gave five’’)

WHAT CHALLENGES HAVE YOU ENCOUNTERED SO FAR?

My greatest challenges so far have been the challenge of finding the right, like-minded, self-motivated, passionate people to work with and who fit into the structure of my laid down corporate organizations, and also the challenge of gaining capital resources needed to run my many enterprises.

HOW HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO OVERCOME THEM?

I have been able to overcome these challenges by patiently and carefully searching for young creative minds, and not compromising the standards of what is required for the efficient performance of the laid down structure. Secondly, by networking and leveraging on the available capital and intellectual resources of similar initiatives of others who are ahead of me in my field of endeavors.

WHAT INSPIRED THE NAME OF YOUR BRAND?

The brand PsalmDavid (creative and performing art), was inspired by my abilities to create and recreate things in a unique form, outdoing myself all and only by myself, just like a Diamond, (only a diamond is said to break a diamond), only David could have written Psalm. And also the ability to do diverse things well, just like David, which coincidentally happens to be my name. David was a man of many talents, breaking his records all by himself.

The brand Creatvcolony was inspired by the quest to find other creative individuals around, to form a colony where innovative ideas are generated for the benefit of our immediate community.

WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY ABOUT TEAM WORK?

Teamwork has mostly been the force behind the lasting successes of most big companies, organizations, and endeavors today. Teamwork, when properly managed builds a great momentum for the effective and efficient execution of any project. Every individual has a unique way of accomplishing the same set of tasks but with different efficiency. However, in a team, when all these different ideas are listed, the most effective and efficient technique is generated and brought to light, thereby eliminating any weakness and threats of a set task, by the workability of every team members areas of strength, bringing about a lasting and successful impact. Most importantly, teamwork broadens individual knowledge, ideas and abilities.

HOW HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO IMPACT YOUR IMMEDIATE COMMUNITY?

I believe that impacting my immediate community starts with impacting the people who live in that community, and this can only take effect after one has positively impacted one’s self. It begins with me.

I have been able to position my mindset for a positive impact, and this has built into my subconscious and has in the long run influenced my every action to be positively impactful, reflecting an admirable lifestyle to others who become inspired and ignites their passion for leading a better life. I have been able to build a sense of valuable responsibilities in everyone that I have come in contact with, both from actions and interactions with them. By so doing, building a circle of individuals who are driven by the passion for leading a responsible and meaningful life that greatly speaks for the communit

WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY TO YOUTHS ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT?

Hmm, well this is what I have to say to everyone about the environment, our environment. From the deepest thoughtful part of my heart:

There is NO SECOND EARTH, where we may choose to run or relocate to when we finally destroy this earth where we are living in now. To alarm this more, irrespective of your location around the world, WE ALL SHARE EVERYTHING nature has to offer. We share the same air, same soil, same lights, same sky, same water, and the same ozone layer. We all share the same MOTHER EARTH. Therefore, if your thoughts are that; what you do or what your neighbor does that negatively affects your immediate environment will not get to you, because you will migrate to another part of this world when the consequences arise, I will suggest you have a deeper rethink. Because we all in the long run share in both the benefits and in the disasters that may arise as a result of our actions or inactions, it is not ours to choose. We all share Mother Earth. So why not be conscious of this TRUTH now, why not tell someone about this TODAY, why not CARE for Mother Earth, why not SAVE MOTHER EARTH. How???...... BE OFFICIALLY GREEN.

Today is World Oceans Day!!!

The World Oceans Day is celebrated on the 8th of June, annually. It was made so in 2008 by the United Nations General Assembly (resolution 63/111, paragraph 171). Oceans are like the heart of our planet. Like your heart pumping blood to every part of your body, the ocean connects people across the Earth, no matter where we live. The ocean regulates the climate, feeds millions of people every year, produces oxygen, is the home to an incredible array of wildlife, provides us with important medicines, and so much more! In order to ensure the health and safety of our communities and future generations, it’s imperative that we take the responsibility to care for the ocean as it cares for us.

This year, the theme is Healthy oceans, healthy planet, and its major focus is on plastic pollution and how to stop it.

World Environment Day 2016: Be an Agent of Change!

The World Environment Day (WED) is the United Nations’ most important day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment. Since it began in 1974, it has grown to become a global platform for public outreach that is celebrated widely in over 100 countries. It serves as a ‘people’s day’ for doing something to care for the earth or become an agent of change. Actions can be taken by individuals or a group of people, locally, nationally, or globally and through decades, WED has generated incredibly positive impacts on the planet.

Annually, WED is celebrated on the 5th of June and it is usually organised around a theme and has different host countries. This year, it is themed on the illegal trade in wildlife under the slogan ‘Go Wild for Life’ and the host country is Angola. The Green Campus Initiative decided to be a part of this year’s WED celebration and create positive impacts locally. The first step was to go in search of a dilapidated primary school in a rural area of Ondo town to renovate and Orimolade Community Primary School in ‘Litaye Community’ fit just perfectly into the picture. As soon as the proper authorities were informed about our intentions, the publicity began and the set day for the event was 3rd June. E-fliers were made and posted on our online platforms and volunteers were implored to join in the movement.

Green_Campus_World_Environmental_Day

As the day gradually approached, several volunteers, ambassadors, and even lecturers began showing their interest. Letters were sent out to solicit for financial support as it is a capital intensive project and on the 3rd to 5th of June, about 60 volunteers including some students from the Green Kids Club moved into Litaye Community with cutlasses, hoes, flowers, paints, brushes and other materials needed for the task ahead. Work began immediately and a short while later, everyone went to pay a respect visit to the ‘Baale’ that is, community ruler. He gave words of advice and blessing. Work resumed; clearing unkempt grasses, planting flowers, painting classrooms and exterior walls.

Lots of the community children came around to help out, some older ones also checked in to show their pleasure and give encouragements. The volunteers had a lot fun while working. They understood better the effectiveness of teamwork, some even newly learnt how to paint. Some others visited the close by palm oil making site in the community to see and learn how its production processes. There was also an exceptional and very attractive mural painting, artistically created by one of our talented ambassadors.

The volunteers also learnt and played local games with the community kids, some others played football with them and it was very exciting. The last batch of volunteers left the community at about 5:30 pm with the intention of fixing another date to put finishing touches on the almost completed renovation.

It is also very interesting to know that about twenty (20) Green Ambassadors at Ahmadu Bello University enthusiastically celebrated WED in Zaria on the 5th of June. They visited Barewa College, a college that is very important in the history of Nigeria as it has produced five (5) Nigerian Presidents. They cleared the environment, planted trees, and organised a lecture on Climate Change given by Jafar Abdulahi from Kaduna State University.

Indeed, we are change agents doing it locally, one impact at a time till a ripple effect spread all through the nation and beyond. WE ARE OFFICIALLY GREEN!

Kaduna State University Goes Green

Greening the Campus” is the first campus seminar of the Green Campus Initiative at Kaduna State University, which introduces eco-sustainability, instigate sustainable actions among students in Kaduna State University. Barakat Tiamiyu; a Green Campus Ambassador, convenes the events, involving the different stakeholders that graced the occasion.

Green Ambassadors at Kaduna State University

Green Ambassadors at Kaduna State University

The event was held at the Faculty of Science Lecture Theatre, Kaduna State University on the 31st May 2016. Two hundred and fifty (250) students from various departments in the University were in attendance. Several staff also graced the event. Mr Yusuf Sokfa Kanhu (a youth ambassador) was the anchor for the event. The theme “GREENING THE CAMPUS” event is aimed to create awareness about the importance of 'Going Green', to form a green family of volunteers working together to build a positive and sustainable future.

Miss Barakat Tiamiyu (Green Ambassador and Convener)  

Miss Barakat Tiamiyu (Green Ambassador and Convener)  

Moderator - Yusuf Kanhu

Moderator - Yusuf Kanhu

 

The event kick started by recognising the presence of distinguished guests; Prof. Bala Dogo - Dean of Postgraduate Studies, KASU, Madam Ketura Aku– Administrator of Hamdala Hostel, Dr Yusuf Saleh (Lecturer, Geography Department)– Representing (Dean, Faculty of Science- Prof. J. G. Laah). Speakers: Arc Gbolade Ogundele -Representing the Green Team,  Alpha Nathaniel Hayab – Young Farmer’s Initiative, and Dr Salamatu Sukai Akor – Mandela Washington Alumni.

 

Miss Barakat Tiamiyu introduced the Green Campus Initiative (GCI). She remarkably took the students round the journey on how she became a GCI ambassador. She talked about the exciting part of working to promote students participation in environmental actions, and how seeing different passions has kept pushing her to forge ahead. She also spoke about what GCI is doing to tackle climate change and environmental sustainability and how students can get involved. A more elaborate explanation was given by Arc Gbolade Ogundele, as he talked about what Going Green further entails, citing some visual example in Kaduna environs, and explaining the steps of achieving environmental sustainability as students. The audience then watched a video presentation that summarised the different GCI activities so far.

Alpha Nathanial Hayab- Founder (Young Farmer's Initiative)

Alpha Nathanial Hayab- Founder (Young Farmer's Initiative)

Arc. Gbolade Ogundele- Representing GCI

Arc. Gbolade Ogundele- Representing GCI

Alpha Nathaniel Hayab, spoke on “Farmer’s and Climate Change”. Using the YALI climate change video to explain the component behind climate change and how it affects farmers, the people, and the economy. He said, ”young people need to be enticed to venture into the business of agriculture for the purpose of profit-making, to reduce unemployment and poverty”. Dr Salamatu Sukai Akor, also spoke on Human health and climate change- talking about its adverse effect on people, and how our activities gradually affect us. She mentioned that bottled water are expensive in the US, and it was a deliberate action to force people to carry their watering can which they could refill at different terminals. They also charge high fees in parking lots; this also is to encourage the use of public transport. 

The event ended with a key remark from the representative of Prof. J. G. Laah (Dean, Faculty of Science). It was indeed an interesting and impactful event, as the speakers and students showed great enthusiasm and now Kaduna State University is Officially Green.  There was a huge turnout of students who waited behind to inquire how they can be actively involved in the movement in Kaduna State University.

Green Campus Initiative featured on the 2016 New Media Conference

The Green Campus Initiative was a part of this year’s New Media Conference; a leading conference in Nigeria that gives you a unique opportunity to learn from, and network with senior leaders from the biggest brands in Nigeria. It held on the 27th of May, 2016 at Four Points by Sheraton Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos. A team of ten (10) representatives from the Initiative attended the conference among which were ambassadors, associates, and an advisor.

The founder of the Initiative, Adenike Akinsemolu gave a brilliant 20 minutes summary of the challenge that birthed the Initiative and how New Media had helped promote and publicise the Initiative. She also made everyone take the Green Pledge.

Green_Campus_NMC

After that, a panel session titled "Green Media and Popular Culture: Using Green Media for Sustainable Green Initiatives in Nigeria" commenced moderated by Owoeye Abolade (Teaching Assistant at FUTA), consisting of four (5) seasoned panellists who are:

Segun Adaju, C.E.O. Blue Ocean Nigeria,

Kayikunmi Stefan, Specialist in Energy Economics,

Mr. Bankole Temitayo, Prime Minister, Green Campus Initiative, and,

Odunayo Ayodeji, Minister of Education and Advocacy, Green Campus Initiative.

The topic, Green Media, and Popular Culture: using New Media for Sustainable Green Initiatives in Nigeria, was discussed extensively. Then a session of question and answer followed. It was indeed a fun and educative experience as many had wondered how the Green Initiative was to fit into the conference. The attention and participation of the audience showed that they were carried along and properly educated and now fully understood the role of New Media in the sustainability of Green Initiatives in Nigeria.

 

 

 

Green Campus Initiative is an Official Partner of Green Kids Club, Inc.

We are pleased to announce our partnership officially with the Green Kids Club, Inc. Their president Sylvia Medina recently contacted us after reading our article posted by Ynaija.com on the launch of our own Green Kids Club. Her mail sparked up interest and excitement in us as this is indeed a great start for our club. Here is a brief summary of what Green Kids Club, Inc is all about.

The Green Kids Club kicked off in 2011. It is a unique, innovative and educative program based on younger children. It is particularly designed to teach younger children on how to be good stewards of the environment. They have an official Green Kids Club on their website where children from all around the world get the opportunity to join their club. As described on their Facebook page, “The series was developed as a utility to teach children the importance of protecting habitats to sustain ecosystems, animal life, and ultimately human life.


Victor and Maya Green are the leaders of the Green Kids Club. Their adventures take them all over the world, exploring new cultures and learning about protecting and preserving the environment and the animals that depend on them. Green kids focus on environmental sustainability, mitigation, and preservation to protect animals and their habitats.” These children are made to do environmental challenges and contests and are awarded books or toys or other items based on winning the highest amount of green points.

The Green Kids Club produce several children books (they have a book based on Botswana, dealing with poaching issues and elephants and another based in Rwanda and the mountain gorilla.), plush toys, and DVDs. This award winning club has extensions and collaborations in USA, India, Botswana, Belize, China, Uganda and even partnered with an orphanage in Tanzania, and a host of others. Now, their collaboration has extended to Nigeria as they will be sending books and prizes to our kids, and we in turn help publicize and populate their club. We look forward to a rewarding and long-lasting partnership with Green Kids Club, Inc. and “Together we make a difference in helping children Learn to Grow up Green!”

Contact Information for Green Kids Club:  www.greenkidsclub.com

Donation of Waste Bins to Adeyemi College of Education

Students from the Integrated Science Department of Adeyemi College of Education, in collaboration with the Green Campus Initiative, donated sixty (60) waste bins to the school management. This act was done to promote environmental cleanliness within the school. It was noticed that the school had a shortage of waste bins, and so in a bid to address this issue, some more waste bins were made available.

The presentation was made to the Provost of the school, Prof. Olukoya Ogen on Tuesday 17th May 2016 who received it with a grateful heart on behalf of the school management and applauded the efforts of the parties involved in the donation. The bins were evenly distributed all through the faculties of the school. 

The Green Campus Initiative Launches the Green Kids Club

The Green Campus Initiative (GCI) is not relenting in her mission to tackle the challenges of climate change and environment sustainability through innovative academic research, and translating that into actions on campuses and beyond. Indeed, we have gone beyond campuses into secondary schools and have launched a very innovative and exciting club called “The Green Kids Club” (GKC). What a beautiful legacy to pass on to the younger generation! Can you imagine what positive impact it would have made if we were all taught how to care for and preserve our environment and how some of our actions/in-actions cause adverse effects on the environment from our secondary school days? Maybe we would not have so much pollution problems as we do today. GKC trains her club members to keep themselves and their surroundings clean, eat organic foods, ensure that their wastes are properly disposed, and are even taught how to recycle or reuse some of the materials regarded as waste. They also get to teach others and correct them when due. A couple of schools have actually opened up to us namely: Homaj Schools and St. Stephens in Ondo town. GKC seeks for an average of 15 members in as many schools as possible. From the students, a Prime Minister (Coordinator) would be unanimously elected, and 2 Green Police (responsible for correction and discipline) would be selected. The list of proposed programs for each term includes Seminars, Community development services, Green Party, Green Ball, and a host of other exciting activities. We also hope to launch a Comic Book. This is simply amazing! Spread the news! GKC has begun for real. 

Green Personality of the Month: Barakat Tiamiyu Bidemi

The Green Personality of the Month is a new idea of the Green Campus Initiative that aims to recognize and celebrate positive, dynamic, and motivated young individuals. Their great passion for the environment and society cause them to take positive actions which do not only improve the environment but also influences others to go green and live sustainably.

Inspired by her works, the Green Team is pleased to announce Barakat Tiamiyu Bidemi of House of Babiti, as the pioneer Green Personality of the Month.

Meet Barakat Tiamiyu Bidemi, a 19-year-old undergraduate student of Urban and Regional Planning, at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife, Nigeria. After founding the House of Babiti - a group of individuals dedicated to promoting youth engagement in active leadership and influencing them to become change drivers - in November 2015, she has successfully hosted 120 students of the Obafemi Awolowo University and network members of the Young African Leaders Initiative, YALI, for a #YALIGoesGreen inspired event. This event sparked undergraduate's interests in taking part in sustainable environmental actions. Bidemi's hobbies include bead making, travelling, and event planning.

We caught up with Bidemi to ask her a few questions:

You, House of Babiti and your friends made news recently with your work and eco-inspired event at Obafemi Awolowo University. What are some of the most important things you learnt during that process?

Yes, we had the event in January, the 23rd, this year. It was our maiden edition. The journey through was like an adventure; having to do new and different things. Some thought it was close to impossible for me to organize that event because I was in my first year at the University. They kept asking, “How are you going to pull things together?” But I believed, and still do, that we should not wait for all conditions to set right, somewhat, before doing the things we believe in: little things make big things. During all of this, I got to understand the essence of surrounding oneself with people that will inspire and gear your ambitions; with these, one will always want to do more.

Why do you believe that environmental sustainability and climate action is so important?

Climate change effects are not gender, ethnic, religious, or racial biased. Climate change affects everyone and every economy. We all need to take action, actions that will mitigate the alarming environmental risks in our communities. Future generations are posed to risks, due to fossil fuel dependence. The environmental sustainability measures and climate actions we take now will help save our world and the future.

What are some of the environmental challenges facing communities and people in Nigeria?

There is desertification in northern Nigeria, increased rise of water levels in oceans and rivers, in the south resulting in flooding, erosion, and land loss. Deforestation and oil spill are present challenges of the Niger Delta region. Also, it is instructive to note that many people still do not understand the phenomenon that results to what they feel or see happening around them. 

In a recent article House of Babiti did, we saw interesting discussions about best techniques that can be used to ignite pro-environmental attitude in different people, especially youths. Why do you think in different societal settings we still have a situation where fewer youths than adults are adopting greener and more sustainable lifestyles? How do we change that?

Just has explained in my recent write-up, many of us, youths, live our lives unconsciously, there are no distinctions, we do things because that is how we perceive the society to be, we follow the 'mother sheep.' Adults in the society on the other hand, still retain distinctions between right and wrong environmental practices, even without any literal understanding of climate actions. Most of our youths grow up in a setting where less interest is shown in sustaining the environment.

These can be reduced through proper sensitization both on social media and physical means. Also, introducing or illustrating sustainable actions to young people, while presenting incentives will go a long way in igniting their passion. Collective efforts should be made in organising events and enlightening youths on the need to have a better and healthy environment.

What do world leaders – in government and business – need to do to make environmental sustainability a reality for all communities?

World leaders in government need to adopt sustainable environmental practises in their diverse economies, take full considerations of the environment risks attached to the development of frameworks before endorsing them, create policies that will check industrial carbon emission, and invest and improve the renewable energy sector. World leaders in business should contribute to the green economy, innovate products of renewable material and help relate to the public on how green practices improve their businesses.

Every time you have an idea; you have a place on your mind. Tell us, what event are you planning to organize soon and where?

Yes, there is always an idea and a place, the place comes first before the idea. I am dedicated to making an impact everywhere I go. Presently, I am in Kaduna State planning a green event designed for undergraduate students of Kaduna State University. Since the Green Campus Initiative has proven to be a catalyst for students participation in environmental happenings, I am happy as a GCI Ambassador to introduce eco-sustainability to Kaduna State University. The event is coming up on the 2nd of June, 2016, and tagged "Greening the Campus". It is going to be positive and exhilarating. I want to thank the respective stakeholders who have been contributing in different ways and the Department of Geography of the University for their support so far. 

Bidemi has the planet and people in the heart. Say hi to her via +2347050541172 or barakatbidemi96@gmail.com

Ahmadu Bello University Students Goes Green

One needs continuously to absorb the rich, purposeful, contents of the Mission Statement of the Green Campus Initiative: "To tackle the challenges of climate change and environment sustainability through innovative academic research, [and] translating that into actions on campus[es] and beyond".

ahmadu-bello-university-green

GCI is not slowing down in creating positive eco-awareness and influencing sustainable actions on Nigerian campuses. Much kudos to Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Green Ambassadors and students: they have translated these into action - a great step indeed - by holding their first physical meetup.

Held at the University's Department of Architecture and co-anchored by Dr. Amina Batagarawa; the GCI ABU Staff Adviser and Ibrahim Majidad; GCI ABU Campus Representative, the meetup was attended by GCI's ambassadors and many other interested students from the various campuses of the University. Themed, 'Why Green?', the meetup was a platform for healthy discussions, networking, brainstorming of ideas, and introducing to the new ambassadors and other students the workings and structures of the GCI Ambassadorship Programme.

In other to break the ice, personal Introductions were done by all in attendance. This was skillfully led by Ibrahim Yusuf Chafe; the President of Society of Architectural Students. After that, Dr. Amina Batagarawa did a very insightful presentation with slides and multimedia. The presentation was on the history, vision, achievement, portfolios and organizational structure of the GCI. It also covered the key values, roles, and duties of a Green Ambassador and other relevant information. Interesting questions covering key issues were raised after the presentation: Chinedu Ohambele, a 400 level architecture student, beautifully and sufficiently answered all of them.

It is interesting and pleasing to note that Ahmadu Bello University is not a newbie to the scene of sustainability processes and eco-friendly designs and structures. The University boasts of a mosque built with plastic materials, located in the Department of Business Administration, and their fight in tackling, head-on, improper waste disposal in major areas of Samaru Zaria community: this effort is led by Simon Gusah, an Australian researcher at Centre for Spatial Information Science (CSIS) under the Department of Urban and Regional Planning of ABU.

The meetup came to an end with photo sessions, after everyone in attendance took the Green Pledge and decided to pursue the purpose and goals of GCI in the little way they could so as to ensure environmental sustainability and a better, healthier, tomorrow.

Indeed, this meetup was effective as students got to network with much passion. The positive outcome of this meetup is already felt in the Zaria community. Congratulations GCI Ahmadu Bello University!

The Pale Blue Dot: Our Inheritance, Our Legacy

Look closely at the picture, observe that brown band to the right. The bluish-white speck you see is the EARTH you and I live on. The picture is named the PALE BLUE DOT; a photograph of Earth taken on February 14, 1990, by the Voyager 1 Space Probe. from about 6 billion kilometres away.

In the photograph, Earth's apparent size is less than a pixel; the planet appears as a tiny dot against the vastness of space, among bands of sunlight scattered by the camera's optics.

To think this is our world, our history, our inheritance and our legacy. A place where we dream to be and become. A place where we plan to conquer and dominate. A place where we want to be known, crave significance and win the approval of the people therein.

We love the earth so much that we are constantly on the search for that elixir that will keep us forever in it. Yet what are we doing with the opportunity afforded us on this green platform?

We have plundered mother nature; cutting the trees without replanting. We have littered the land surfaces and oceans, depositing toxic chemicals and contaminants through our selfish activities. We keep flaring gases, contributing to the greenhouse gases emission through our vehicles and other utilities we can do without.

We treat the Earth carelessly to preserve our lives forgetting that it is the only platform we have to live. If the Earth dies, we die with it! So, why not choose to be the one to care for the environment.

We think the earth is so big and our little activity at one corner won't hurt anyone...try placing a finger on that Pale blue dot and check if you can see it anymore. Of course, you can't! The Earth is so small that what you do affects every part of it. And guess what, it's a boomerang!

What you do to Earth it gives back to you. You give it excess Carbon gases, it gives you acid rain and global warming. You give it trees and less dirt, it gives you oxygen and freshness.

Take a stand to care for Earth, pledge to live simply and moderately. Reduce your waste, dispose of your waste properly, recycle materials that you can, do not buy what you don't need, engage in various activities that will reduce pollution, plant trees and become an ambassador for a clean Earth.

Let us care for our Pale Blue Dot else it might just be lost in the vastness of space -- along with us, and everything we have and will ever hold dear.

It's #EARTHDAY2016 reaffirm your stance for the environmental protection.


ABOUT THE WRITER
Owoeye Josiah Abolade is an environmental biologist and public health expert in the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo State, Nigeria. He is an advocate for green Nigeria as a volunteer for Green Campus Initiative.

The State of Nature

Now that it’s been almost seven years, I can sufficiently say, I didn’t like Avatar much. To give a bit of context, I’m a film buff and looking back, I was probably more caught up in the experience of it all rather than in the movie itself. Avatar was Meh! It’s the kind of movie you look back at and say, yeah, I saw that. But, it is funny how certain parts and not the whole of things leave an imprint; like the memories of loved ones, where we only remember the good. I’m not going to outright say that Avatar got me interested in conservation, but, it sort of did. There’s this scene right before the big battle where Jake goes to pray to the N’aavi ancestors for guidance and assistance. In it, he makes a strange, but poignant comment. He says “They (humans) destroyed their green.” The ancestors end up providing assistance, and a whole lot of bloodshed commences, but that’s beside the point, this article isn’t about Pocahontas 2, sorry, Avatar. Cameron implies in the film that the world is seemingly headed to state of no nature and from a philosophical point that is mightily interesting to me.

I have read a multitude of classical philosophical works and I frequently ponder the friction between the past and the future. If, for example, the past was dictated by a state of nature, wouldn’t the future, being the polar opposite, be one without it. The State of Nature, as a philosophical thought, presents a world without society. I tend to take it further to mean, a world without the modern man. As the name suggests, nature rules in this environment and there is unparalleled equality among man. Man, without the technological advances of the modern era, only takes what he needs from nature. Nature would also rely on man to foster the photosynthesis loop; and being a largely agrarian society, also for the care and nurture of nature. In a sense, there is equality between man and nature as well. Thomas Hobbes, the British philosopher known for his social contract theory, postulates that in this state of nature, man is preoccupied with doing everything to preserve their life. He contends that life is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short. The state of nature is essentially a world of man versus man. Hence, the need for contracts to negotiate a way out of this compromise- and the subsequent creation of functioning states and governments. Hobbes sees the creation of government as the end of the state of nature. Governance is in itself a form of modernity. As such, I feel there exists a disconnection between the modern man and the state of nature. Evolution postulates the survival of the fittest, and as we gravitated towards a more unequal and unjust society, certain beneficial aspects of the state of nature have been abandoned.

I am not advocating the dissolution of government. If anything, I have constantly argued for the need of government to give conservation more precedence in the global arena. But the key word is preservation. The Hobbesian view is that governments form to ensure preservation of man. It likewise suggests that it is the fear of death that propels man to peace. As such, shouldn’t nature then be entitled to the same rights of preservation, given our equality? Recent estimates suggest that at least 10,000 species go extinct every year. At this rate, in another millennia, the planet would be a desolate place. Man is particularly responsible for this trend. 2015 was the warmest recorded year in history, the second warmest was 2014. Preservation of the environment has been relegated to the back-bench. This is where I feel government should play more of an active role. Hobbes stresses that the role of the sovereign is to ensure common peace and safety. Climate change is the greatest silent threat to the world. To ensure the safety of the future generation, we need to do more to avert the unthinkable.

Man’s greed has been echoed for generations now. It is the predominant assumption in economics. Industrialization and globalization are key to understanding rampant pollution. While I think competition on an international stage is healthy in terms of development, there should also be a rationale motivated by self-interest. Climate change is responsible for extreme weather patterns the world over. Droughts, extreme heats, glaciers melting and rising sea levels have an adverse effect on people’s livelihoods as well as the environment. Add to that the negative health outcomes these changes in the environment brings and you’ll perfectly understand the rising costs of these changes to man. I frequently refer to this discord between the global north and south when it comes to conservation. Less advanced nations bear the brunt of environmental degradation because they are ill-equipped to handle them. There seems to be an information asymmetry with regards to dealing with climate change. Not only do advanced nations have better technologies to deal with them, but information is not delivered in the appropriate channel to developing nations. This is the particular area where I feel government should play more of active role. It is not enough to rely on civil society to spread awareness on this all important issue. Competition should drive our need to preserve the environment- the need to better ourselves, to evolve, to survive.

The art of survival is engulfed in an endless state of conflict. The environment, more than anything charts a timeline similar to the literary conflict narrative. Man against man; where the need to secure resources generates conflicts. Nature is at the nucleus of this stage, albeit, not overly consumed to necessitate a disastrous erosion of the earth. The current stage is that of man against nature. Make no mistake, we are winning this battle but it is one we should not necessarily be partaking in. In most narratives, nature fights back aggravatingly. The stage that follows will be one of man against self. To wage war against nature is to ultimately wage war against ourselves as we stand to lose the most from an eroded earth.

Hobbes Leviathan (last reference, I swear) speaks on the Kingdom of Darkness. It’s not as mythical as it sounds however. Hobbes is talking about ignorance; similar to Plato’s Cave. I feel ignorance is the single most important factor derailing the environmental movement in the modern epoch. The onus, as in the cave, is for an individual to venture out, to seek knowledge, to seek the light. There are so many resources in this day and age to supplement the little you might know about climate change and environmental degradation. But we need sustained interest in the field, be it though organizing symposiums or going the extra mile to include it as a major in universities. Very few universities have programs in environmental protection, and fewer students actually take the bolder step to major in them.

In Avatar, man has taken the giant step into the unknown. After exhausting the resources on Earth, they venture to another planet. Barring any outrageous technological advancement, that seems highly unlikely in the near future. Already, we are seeing nature fighting back. Scientist are predicting more frequent changes in weather patterns around the world. Frequent micro earthquakes have been linked to fracking and extreme heat and cold are becoming more common. Just this past week, there have been several emergencies in India regarding heat strokes. The state of no nature isn’t a prediction, it’s already begun and we ultimately have no one but ourselves to blame. 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Olaoluwa holds a Masters in Public and International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh and a Bachelors from Lincoln University. He writes for the Green Campus Initiative. His core interests include poverty alleviation, environmental sustainability and youth empowerment. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, writing and watching sports. In the future, he hopes to obtain a doctorate degree where he aims to study exclusionary policies that limit youth participation in politics.

Breaking Free from Fossil Fuels, Nigeria's Best Friend

The argument is over. Anyone that doesn’t believe that climate change is happening doesn’t believe in science.
— Leonardo DiCaprio (Actor, Activist, U.N. Messenger of Peace)

Solemnly, global warming, a cause of climate change, is one of the most important issues facing all of humanity today. Many environmentalists and climate scientists are of the opinion that the rise and proliferation of large scale industries in First World countries blew up the issue of global warming. Today, the significant effects of this industrialization on climate systems and patterns have swayed more towards less developed countries: changing weather patterns, rising sea level, more extreme weather events, and disruption of national economies and lives! Nigeria comes into this global problem at this point - a truth that can not be disputed. Hence, there is a dire need for the Republic of Nigeria to take sustainable actions, to move to a low carbon economy amongst other things.

The Nigerian society has been in an age long, paradoxical relationship with fossil fuels: this energy resources the nation while the ecosystem is damaged. Still, they remain best friends. Fossil fuels are non-renewable energy sources occurring in three (3), major forms; coal, oil or petroleum, and natural gas. On the history of energy sources in Nigeria, Olayinka explains:

Imported coal was first used in 1896, but it was not discovered in Nigeria until 1909 and was first produced in 1916. Although oil exploration started in 1901, it was first discovered in commercial quantity in 1956 and produced in 1958. Oil thereafter took over the energy scene from coal until 1969, when hydro energy was first produced.[1]

It would not be right if I completely paint Nigeria in a bad light with regards to environmental sustainability. Interestingly, 16% of the total energy in Nigeria comes from fossil fuel, and another 1% of it is generated from hydropower. The rest comes from waste and biomass.[2]

This is a good indicator, somewhat; it shows that dependency on fossil fuels have reduced - a step in the process of finally breaking free from them. However, the use of alternative and most importantly, renewable energy sources, is still deficient. As Oliver Twist asks for more, I am asking that more be done, that the Nigerian energy sector completely break free from fossil fuels, and prioritize generating solar and hydro energy. This would be a leapfrog to a cleaner, more resilient economy. I do this with the planet and people in mind.

Some individuals suggest that since fossils fuels are easily available and sourced, the nation should continue harnessing energy from them. I do not stand with this opinion. They must be reminded of the exponential increase in population which has increased the consumption of energy: the stock of fossil fuels has become limited, fast approaching its end. Others might raise issues of low cost and simplicity of harnessing energy from these fuels. Considering the serious health hazards and risk of air pollution – in the short and long term - associated with the combustion of fossil fuels, would it be humane and justifiable to put financial objectives before securing human life?'.

The US solar industry now employs three times more workers than coal mining or oil extraction.[3] Wow! Job creation is also a proof renewable energy generation. The Federal budget should support renewable energy instead of subsidizing the oil industry. Nigeria can completely break free from fossil fuels!

Sources:

1. Ogunsola O.I. (1990, 2007). History of Energy Sources and their Utilization in Nigeria, Energy Sources, 12 (2), p. 181. 

2. "Nigeria: Overview". U.S. Energy Information Administration. Retrieved 8 April 2016

3. Climate Council

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Christopher Oghenekevwe Oghenechovwen , a B.Tech student of Meteorology and Climate Science (FUTA), is a decolonized African, environmentalist and ready volunteer. He is 2013 Citizenship and Leadership Certified by CLTC, Nigerian Federal Ministry of Youth Development, a 2015 UNESCO & Athabasca University student on Media and Information Literacy and Intercultural Dialogue, 2015 Senior Category Gold Winner of The Queen's Commonwealth Essay Competition, and youth correspondent at yourcommonwealth.org . His growing passions lie within the circle of Climate Action, Media and Information, IT, Youth Education and Leadership. Apart from volunteering with Earthplus, The Green Campus Initiative, and doing creative writing, Oghenekevwe loves to connect with people. Invite him for a healthy conversation via chrischovwen@gmail.com