Africa Lead collaborated with eight organizations in Nigeria to competitively select and nominate participants for the Champions for Change leadership course held from March 13-17, 2017. The organizations included the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), Fresh & Young Brains Development Initiative (FBIN), ActionAid, LEAP Africa, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), the Grace Green Revolution Foundation, Nigerian Women Agro Allied Farmers Association (NIWAAFA) and the Pan African Youth Network for Agriculture (PAYNA).
The four (4) day leadership course brought together 79 (29 male and 50 female) youth and women from various states of Nigeria who are committed to creative new approaches to achieving food security in Africa. The signature course strengthened the individual leadership and management skills of leaders, managers and innovators in these key organizations seeking to positively influence the development of agriculture and food security in Nigeria. The curriculum covered the new CAADP results framework and principles of the Malabo Declaration. The course inspired and imparted the skills needed by individuals to lead change and drive agricultural transformation in Nigeria.
As a result of this course, the participants can now describe their current and potential, formal and informal roles in food security initiatives, including – but not exclusive to – active roles in CAADP and develop advocacy strategies to change mindsets about the role of the very poor, the importance of gender and the role of nutrition in advancing agricultural-led growth.
The course also emphasized the impact of climate change on agricultural development; demonstrated skills necessary for being a Champion for Change, including such areas as planning, advocacy, and transformative leadership. Participants appreciated the power of African proverbs and its relation to leadership and organizational sustainability, identified, and described the benefits of monitoring and evaluation in the implementation of agriculture development projects.
The course also fostered networking, learning and information sharing on opportunities, new technologies, successes and lessons learned in agribusiness among participants. The participants expressed excitement about the knowledge they received and demonstrated commitment to continue networking by creating a Whatsapp platform to communicate and share information and knowledge with each other.