#1 An Inspiring Story – Sitting in Front of the Mirror She Dreamed of the Future She Wanted

At the 2018 African Women in the Media (AWIM) Conference I met many women with inspiring stories. One of them was Maimuna Kolo, the first Female Press Secretary to serve the deputy governor of her state in Minna. We laughed together as she shared a little glimpse from her journey into getting to her present work. Life has dealt her some blows as she lost her first husband yet she rises above her loss to become the formidable woman she now is. Let me share with you a bit from my interview with her.

Maimuna Kolo:  I grew up in Jos. While in Jos, my first husband passed on may his soul rest in peace and I moved to Minna where I remarried. Broadcast journalism has always been my passion ever since I was a little girl. I will sit in front of the mirror, start reading story books, practicing how to read the news. At that time one of my role models was Bimbo Roberts, I loved the way she read the news. So I wanted to be that kind of person. When I was writing my JAMB, my dad, may his soul rest in peace, didn’t want me to go into the media because of the stigma that is attached to women in the media. But I was stubborn, he didn’t know and I put in for Mass Communication. And that was the course I studied even though he was not happy. But I wish he was alive now to see where I am now and what I have become.

A.A: Did you ever work for a media organization

Maimuna: I worked for the state TV. I was a producer, presenter, and a news reader. When I moved from Jos to Minna and I got the job at the state television, at the interview I was asked about how many years of working experience I had. I said none. And they said, “we mean where have you worked before?” I said, “I have never worked before” because my late husband didn’t want me to work and this is my first time working. It was after his death that I moved to Minna. They were so surprised because when I auditioned I read the news perfectly. They thought I had experience but It was all about my love and passion for the job.

A.A: In other words, you are saying if a woman reading this now has a dream, regardless of whether she has experience or not, she should just step out?!

Maimuna: She should strongly step out! She shouldn’t let her dreams die. Like I told my children, at a point in time, “I have lived my life for you but now I want to live my life, I don’t want life to pass me by”.

So if you have that passion for anything, you should step out; don’t let anybody kill your dream. Make your dream come true. – Maimuna Kolo

A.A: Fantastic, so how did you land this job as the first female press secretary to the deputy governor of your state?

Maimuna: Since the creation of the state no woman has ever held that kind of position. Actually, I have never met the deputy governor until I was appointed as his Press Secretary. I didn’t lobby or beg for it but I remember saying it some time to someone that I wished to be the press secretary; maybe the right people heard about it, I don’t know. But I was just sitting in my office when I was summoned to the government office to come and collect and appointment letter. I was surprised and wondered but I went anyway and that was how I got my letter.

A.A: Some people say nothing just happens; you must have done something or sowed some good seeds. Were you covering bits at the statehouse as a reporter?

Maimuna: Honestly I wasn’t. I was just doing my thing as a producer, presenter, and newsreader on my station, I have never worked in the government house.

A.A: So we can say providence smiled on your hard work.

Maimuna: (Laughing) Yea, you could say that and I am not a politician nor have I ever been a part of politics.

A.A: How is life now as a press secretary? Being the woman, how do you manage the men that have to work with you in working for the deputy governor? How do you manage your time and the challenges?

Maimuna: It has not been easy because when I first got the appointment, the men were not ready to accept me as their boss. An interesting thing happened; a man worked up to me and congratulated me for my appointment as the Press secretary to the wife of the deputy governor. I smiled and said no, I am the Press secretary for the deputy governor. The man gave me a cynical look and said aloud, “No, A woman, Is impossible! I responded and said, Yes! A woman, I am the Press Secretary and it is happening”. I have 13 men working in my team; they make up my cameramen, photographer, managers of public address systems, the driver and more. They were all not corporative at first but I devised a method to put them under control. We had a meeting and some were even rude to me but I didn’t mind but I finally managed to get them to work with me.

A.A: How did you do that? Did you make them your friends or wielded your authority wand? (Laughing)

Maimuna: I used both. I became friends with them because if I don’t make them my friends they would not give me what I want on the job. If any of them fell ill or had a wedding ceremony I honor them by paying a visit and being a part of their celebrations, sometimes I ask about their wellbeing, wives, and children.

A.A: That is a beautiful leadership principle, using a leadership style that cares for staff members. How do you manage the odd hours of work?

Maimuna: Sometimes I have to leave home as early as 5am to meet up with my team for an assignment. At other times a travel assignment comes up after I must have left for work, then I would have to call my husband to inform him; pack my things and we are off.

A.A: So your job as a Press Secretary demands that you travel all the time, Is your husband supportive of you?

Maimuna: He is very supportive of what I do and even encourages me. He is also a journalist who works with NTA international and knows what the job entails.

A.A: (Laughing) And I guess the money too that comes with being a Press Secretary. Alright, your final words for women who have a busy schedule. I have had conversations where people believe that if a woman wants to become a politician, her home will suffer and In fact, Widows are better for such roles.

Maimuna: There is no woman job, there is no man job. If a woman has a passion for whatever please go out and live your dream. Some women shy away from taking on certain roles. For on my job when we travel in a convoy I happen to be the only woman.

There is no woman job, there is no man job. If a woman has a passion for whatever, please go out and live your dream. – Maimuna Kolo

A.A: What are you doing to encourage other women to come on board?

Maimuna: I mentor female youth corps members posted to my office and engage them even after their service year giving them some stipend to manage until they get a job. I also have a female journalist in my former office that I have brought on board to work with me in the government house.

Making Visible women in Leadership Positions or Aspiring. 

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant-@debisibusybeemedia, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Controller Programs (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter – @DebisiBusybee, Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

The Possibility of Ending Sexual Violence in War: Nadia Murad #2018NobelPeacePrize

The week had been busy and Friday was here, I looked forward to a relaxing weekend. Ready to sort out a few tasks for the day, the TV was tuned to CNN and there written on the screen was – Breaking News- 2018 Nobel Peace Prize to be announced shortly. My interest was immediately turned on and I sat to follow the unfolding story. Soon Berit Reiss Anderson, the chairman Nobel Peace Prize committee, stood on the podium briefing press men and out came the names of two individuals who have been lending their voices and working hard at ending sexual violence and genocides – Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad. I wanted to know more about these two persons and so here I am getting ready to share a few of my findings on their stories in two separate posts.

I could never hope to capture their pain, agony, struggles and tireless efforts at mending others and speaking up to get the international community and everyone in the world to end this war crime – Sexual violence/rape as a tool for war.

But I’d like to simply share their work and story briefly in the bid to say, “I salute your courage; thank you for giving yourself so others can live in a safer world”.

                               NADIA MURAD 

Nadia Murad
Photo Credit: SBS

As I watched a few video recordings that documented a few of Nadia’s speeches, advocacy campaigns and the film, “On her shoulders”; I got a glimpse of her personality and not just her picture. One can see and feel her pain as she struggled bravely to share her story and mostly appealed that something should be done to save the Yazidis from the Islamic State’s (ISIS) determination to eliminate her people. In the documentary film, “On her shoulders”, she wept and had to wipe away her tears so she could be strong for those who looked to her as a voice for their freedom. Tears welled up in my eyes too – there is no amount of telling that will ever be able to explain or paint the picture of what she and other girls must have gone through in the hands of their abductors; not to mention the pain of losing loved ones as well.

Nadia Murad Basee Taha was 19 years old when the Islamic State (ISIS) attacked her community and killed scores of people, abducting thousands of women and girls. Nadia was taken to the city of Mosul where her ISIS abductors did whatever they wished with her and others; she was beaten, tortured and raped. Three months later she managed to escape and ended up in a refugee camp and got lucky as one of those who benefited from the refugee program by Germany.

The horrific story of her experience in the hands of ISIS soon broke out and ever since Nadia Murad has been a voice speaking against the genocide of Yazidis and sex slavery as a weapon of war. She recounts her experience and remembers how her mother, brothers and many other families were murdered.

Tired of re-telling her story as reporters badged her with loads of questions about what happened Nadia In her words said: “Do not ask me questions about how I felt when I was raped but instead ask me about how to stop sexual violence; how women and girls can be protected from being used as sex slaves during wars. “I want justice for the Yazidis”

Nadia’s quest to draw the attention of everyone who can do something to end the plight of her people in the hands of ISIS led her to start the “Nadia Initiative”, to engage in advocacy and provide support for genocide victims in 2016.

At age 27, eight years later Nadia’s courageous efforts at ending genocide and sexual violence get her the prestigious award of 2018, Nobel Peace Prize jointly with Dr Denis Mukwege from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Her response to the award reveals a woman who is resilient in her mission to end the persecution of the Yazidi communities:

“I am incredibly honoured and humbled by their support and I share this award with Yazidis, Iraqis, Kurds, other persecuted minorities and all of the countless victims of sexual violence around the world:

“As a survivor, I am grateful for this opportunity to draw international attention to the plight of the Yazidi people who have suffered unimaginable crimes since the genocide by Daesh, which began in 2014. Many Yazidis will look upon this prize and think of family members that were lost, are still unaccounted for, and of the 1,300 women and children, which remain in captivity. Like many minority groups, the Yazidis, have carried the weight of historical persecution. Women, in particular, have suffered greatly as they have been, and continue to be the victims of sexual violence…” Nadia Murad. Click on this link to find her full statement”

The Possibility of ending sex slavery and sexual violence as a weapon of war

I am reminded of a personal experience my mother shared with me many years ago. In her heydays as an adolescent just like Nadia, an inter-tribal conflict arose between our community and another. She and other young girls became a target as the conflict escalated; the warriors/fighters of each community would raid homes and carry away young girls like her to become brides of the warring men. My mother was hidden by her parents for a while but soon it became apparent that she was no longer safe. Lucky for her they managed to sneak her off to the city where it was safe. My mother who is now over 70 years was one of the lucky girls, some of her friend’s lives were changed forever as they did not escape.

Sexual violence as a weapon of war is as old as our great, great, great forefathers and mothers. Will this ever end? I believe the answer is to find preventive measures and resolutions to conflicts before they escalate into wars. I believe also that we humans must give room for others to live and be for we all deserve to live peaceably and flourish. great and mothers. Will this ever end? I believe the answer is to find preventive measures and resolutions to conflicts before they escalate into wars. I believe also that we humans must give room for others to live and be for we all deserve to live peaceably and flourish. Laws should also be put in place to punish perpetrators of such heinous crime.

Nadia’s dream and goal is aptly captured in the last line of her statement: “We must not only imagine a better future for women, children and persecuted minorities, but we must also work consistently to make it happen – prioritizing humanity, not war. work consistently to make it happen – prioritizing humanity, not war.

Insight to keywords

War Crime: Torture, inhumane conducts or acts carried during a war which is against international rules guiding wars.

Yazidi: a community of people in Iraq but Yazidis can also be found in Turkey, Iran, Syria and Georgia. They are a closely knitted community who believed differently from the Islamic communities where they are situated. Hence, the reason for the Islamic State attacks and attempts to destroy them.

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant-@debisibusybeemedia, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Controller Programs (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter – @DebisiBusybee, Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

What You require to start & grow your business -Interview With Mrs. Temilola Adepetun, Chief Executive Officer, School Kits Limited.

Mrs. Temilola Adepetun

At School Kits Limited head office in Gbagada, Lagos, I waited patiently to meet the CEO in one of the offices to extend my appreciation for the generous donation of school items for visually impaired young Samuel, a beneficiary of the Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative school support project, I and my team initiated.

A door opens and in came a beautiful woman. She had a simple demeanor to her personality and as we were introduced, she welcomed me warmly. I couldn’t have guessed that she was the Chief executive officer of the company. Mrs. Temilola Adepetun chatted away with me like we had known each other for ages. Now that is the kind of CEO I would like to be. As I thanked her on behalf on my team and me for supporting our efforts in giving this vulnerable child access to quality education and an empowered future; I felt Mrs. Adepetun passion as she responded and talked about the need to give back to our society as privileged citizens.

I became curious about how she started her company, School Kits Limited which had now grown to have 3 outlets in Lagos and one in Abuja. My nose for news picked up the smell for a great and inspiring story and so I asked her to share her story.

Me: I would love to know what inspired the idea that birthed, School Kits Limited

Temilola Adepetun: Many years ago my first son got admission into secondary school and I had to shop for the things he needed. Back then I worked in the Oil and Gas industry and had a very busy schedule. I had to visit about five different markets to get everything my son needed. It was stressful and so I thought to myself, “isn’t there a shop that has everything one needed for school”? I mean for parents like me who had such a busy schedule, it will be a great relief.

Me: After that thought crossed your mind, what did you do with the idea?

Temilola Adepetun: I remembered a few shops that I shopped in while doing my A-levels in England between 1977 and 1979; this made me think that it was possible to replicate such a shop here in Nigeria. I put down my thought on paper and spoke to a few friends who were enthusiastic about it and said that it was doable. Soon afterward in the year 2000, as another school session was about to begin, I collected my son’s school list and got a few friends to also share their children’s list with me. Then I traveled to Dubai to get the items and a few more. On getting back I decided to hold an exhibition to test the market. I sent out notices to parents of different PTA directorates and friends; it turned out to be a huge success. And in September, that same year, the company was Incorporated and opened her first outlet to the public at Onikan, Lagos.

Me: Surely the ride hasn’t been a smooth one, how have you managed the challenges that come with running a business and company?

Temilola Adepetun: Passion for what I do and the service I provide which is to offer a one-stop shop for parents and students keeps me going. It feels rewarding that I am able to meet the needs, my customers. The company has also evolved and grown over time. A time came when the company became much bigger than what I could handle alone and so I engaged a business strategy consultant to help restructure the business. That step created room for hiring a Chief Operating Officer for the company. It is a move that has produced great results and we have expanded to having different arms at School Kits. Apart from providing wholesales; we now operate our own cloth production line and we are still expanding.

A few  take away points about what is required to step out and start your own thing/business that stood out for me as I had this conversation with Mrs. Adepetun:

  1. Ideas can pop up from your own life experience and needs.
  2. Write down your thoughts, brainstorm about your idea and share with trusted friends.
  3. Try to think about where you have seen a prototype of your idea that worked.
  4. Be creative with your idea and step out; test your idea.
  5. Once you achieve success in operating your idea on a small scale, start your business.
  6. Get registered and be visible to the public so clients can find you.
  7. As you grow and expand don’t try to do it all alone, hire experts and professionals who will compliment and provided the required skills for your growing company.

School Kits prides herself in providing quality Uniforms and school items to cater for needs of the parents and students population

Company Goal: Be a Household name and “The Go to Company”

School Kits: Everything you need to kit for schoolTemilola Adepetun

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant-@debisibusybeemedia, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter – @DebisiBusybee, Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

Step Out of Your Title ; Surprise yourself and Others

Me & Dolapo Dosunmu

Meeting this dear woman, Mrs Dolapo Dosunmu at a development work review meeting left me feeling good and humble. She made us feel relaxed and generated so much laughter with her sense of humor. You wouldn’t guess her title, I mean her role in the office.

She was so down to earth as the moderator of the 2-Day Review Meeting with UNICEF and 10 States Media Partners that produced the Radio Drama Serial, “Pim pim pim”. It was an enter – educate format to generate social behavior change in attitudes of people and communities towards female genital mutilation FGM also known as female circumcision.

I and a participant were saddled with the responsibility of reporting all activities and discussion of the first day of the meeting. While crossing our “Ts’ and doting our “l’, we asked her to give us her designation in order to properly capture the correct information needed to conclude the report. Here was this woman telling me that she is the,”State Director of National Orientation Agency, Oyo”! I stood there thinking, “wow, so a state director has been the moderator”. Dosunmu was the errand girl if you like, because she was there to ensure that the meeting ran smoothly. She mingled easily and was humble about how she addressed everyone.

My take away and lesson:
*Step out of your title and make a simple difference.
*Wear your badge and title with humility.
* Mingle and keep people guessing about who you truly are😀. No need to blow your own trumpet, let others do it.

Women, we need to support each other more. Appreciate your sister, no need for the competition and unhealthy rivalry – paraphrasing a point from Dolapo Dosunmu

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant-@debisibusybeemedia, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter – @DebisiBusybee, Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

 

If She Can… Sure You Can Girls! 👸

Hello there,
I am literarily smiling😊 and feeling good as I write this. As always my ears and eyes are sharp to pick up on women who are doing great in their chosen field or carrier. Breaking the glass ceiling in fields thought to be a “man’s turf” is exciting for me. And I always tell my daughter at every opportunity that presents itself that she can be anything she dreams of.

So let me introduce you to Prof. Mrs Taiye Fasola whom I met recently at my children’s end of school sessions party.

She was the Keynote speaker and this woman had a wealth of experience to share with students, teachers and parents.

Prof. Fasola is the first Female Professor in the department of Botany, University Ibadan since the institution was established in 1948. Taiye Fasola went on to achieve another ground breaking feat. She is the first Professor of Ethnobotany and Economic Botany in Nigeria 🙌🙌. I salute and celebrate this great woman who became “a First” in these areas opening up the door for other young women to aspire.

Her story did not start on a smooth slate. Prof. Fasola had her fair share of struggle and failure but somewhere in between she had to decide that she wanted to be the best in her career. As a student after getting a low GPA in her first year, she woke up and buried herself in her books; the library became her friend. Today she looked back and is happy with the results of her hardworking and determination.

You can be anything you dream of. Do not let your background keep your back on the ground

Do not give in or give up.

Success knows no gender. If you are determined and willing, you will achieve your goals and succeed

Make up your mind to go forward in the pursuit of your dream and success. Find out what and who you need to get you there.

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

 

Meet Dr. Adeola Olubamiji: The First African Biomedical Engineer(Ph.D ): Her Life & Projects

A few days ago my boss asked me to accompany her to a meeting where I eventually met a young promising woman from Nigeria who lives in Canada and is making Nigeria proud. The story was that this lady was already doing a lot to project Africa and empower girls, women and the youth. Now that’s the kind of story I love to hear and therefore I was delighted to go meet this inspiring lady. But I actually met her via a SKYPE conversation … hehehe. I tell you our conversation with her blew me away and left me feeling good about my heritage as a Nigerian woman. She is the kind of role model young people need to inspire and motivate them to go on to achieve their dreams and goals.

So here I am trying to celebrate and project the good things this beautiful lady is doing.

This post shares a bit of our conversation with Dr. Adeola Olubamiji the first black person to obtain a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from University of Saskatchewan . She speaks about herself and an ongoing project to empower young people in Ibadan in Tie-Dye Engineering. Dr. Adeola’s story went viral on the social media after she shared her story about how she rose from a humble background to become the scientist that she now is. Adeola went on to start STEMHUB FOUNDATION to inspire young people to pursue science and discover the possibilities therein. Bolatito Joseph- BJJ (Deputy Director Programmes- Radio Nigeria) conducted the interview.

Interview

BJJ: Tell us about yourself, a little bit about your background and why you are doing this project

DR. Adeola: Recently about a year ago I happen to be the first African to obtain a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Saskatchewan here in Canada. My upbringing, I was raised by two people with no formal education; from hawking pepper on the streets of Mokola, Ibadan to becoming a child farmer; having to help my mum on the farm and how all of this happened to me; then because of my love for science made me who I am today. I went ahead and posted my story on Facebook the day I convocated. That story went viral and it was in the news in Nigeria and the media basically. So I grew lots of followership on social media and as such I couldn’t hide anymore as a scientist who just wanted to live my life for myself. I realize that my life wasn’t mine anymore; a lot of people wanted to be a part of it; a lot of people were looking for a role model and some people were looking for mentors for themselves or for their children. So that’s how STEMHUB Foundation started.

Mokola, where the empowerment training on Tie & Dye engineering for young people is taking place in the neighborhood where I grew up. It is in this neighborhood that I hawked pepper. So I looked at my neighborhood and I found out that it is still the same. We still have people involved in vices and using prostitution as the only means of livelihood for them. So I was looking out there to see – what Is it I can help people acquire that they can use as a means to fend for themselves instead of having to do something shady or having to sell their body.

This Tie and Dye program is not the only program my foundation has sponsored. For the celebration of Women in the month of March 2018, I partnered with the Female Designers Movement in Lagos to sponsor design engineering for 150 women. We taught them graphic design making of posters; a user design for websites.

Right now after my Ph.D., I got a job and currently work as a lead material engineer in a company that basically manufacture Pollan, parts of engines of aircraft, fighter jets and all of that here in Canada. I am very passionate about anything engineering, 3D-printing which is my area and right now I focus on aerospace.

BJJ: Great! Ok can we talk about the many awards you’ve won

Dr. Adeola: Ok one thing I always tell people is, it is a lot difficult to talk about when it comes to hyping myself; I am not good at it.

BJJ: (Laughs)

Dr. Adeola: I believe something, “If your mission and vision in life are about you, you won’t go really far.

BJJ: Yeah

Dr. Adeola: But if your vision and your mission are about the people you will go really, really far. And often times those types of vision and mission are bigger than you and require a lot of resilient for it to happen. After my story broke out on the internet, the “Media Broadcast Corporation” which is our own “Radio Nigeria” here in Canada recognized me as one of the 150 black women making Canada better for the celebration of Canada at 150years last year. Also last year the Canadian Nigerian Association honored me as “The Woman of Outstanding Achievements in Education”, July 2017. Fortunately, Oni of Ife and some other dignitaries from Nigeria attended that event.

“If your mission and vision in life are about you, you won’t go really far. But if your vision and your mission are about the people you will go really, really far.

In my absence the Ondo state government honored me as 2018 female role model of young girls in the state. I have also been nominated by the Canadian Business Treat; these are a group of women whose passion centers on finding entrepreneurs and young Canadian women and honoring them. I have been nominated as one of the people that will receive an award this year, 2018.

Dr Olubamiji at a science training for some children

There is been a couple of awards here and there but to me, it is not about the awards. It is about what I can do for people. If it wins an award, yes I am happy but I would gladly celebrate the people and the progress we are making in the lives of the people than how many accolades I get or how many awards people have given me. This dream and vision are not about me, it’s about the people.

BJJ: You have done so well for yourself and I want to tell you that Nigeria is proud of you. Now, are you thinking of coming back home?

Dr. Adeola: The Industry that I work in right now focus on 3D-printing different on aerospace material. During my Ph.D. I was fortunate to use this same 3D-printing, to manufacture. So 3D-Printing is an area growing drastically around the world; Nigeria has not embraced the idea yet. If there is an opportunity to come and be a part of trading digital manufacturing space for Africa so that we can attract automotive companies to come and open their brands in Nigeria, I will definitely love to be a part of such change. Until that moment when this type of opportunity happens I think I will stay here in Canada to grow my knowledge and without money, I wouldn’t be able to help people in Nigeria.

BJJ: (Laughs)

Dr. Adeola: So I will stay here to be able to make some money and to be able to do what I do right now (Laughing). But if you ask me where is your heart? My heart is in Nigeria. I believe that positive role models are very, very rare to find in our society. And when we have such positive role models, often times they do not have the right platform to be projected so our young girls can see them. I feel that if I were to be present in Nigeria I will achieve way more; I will inspire and motivate way more. And I could be a part of those people who can help drive success among women and young people in Nigeria. Until that time when I get the opportunity, I have to be here.

But the good news is that I will be coming home to Nigeria in August for two weeks to receive an award. I will do all I can to inspire; to encourage and be a part of the people; to let them see what is possible if you study science, believe in God and if you work hard and are resilient, you can go really far in life.

BJJ: Thank you very much for speaking with us. I really enjoyed this conversation. God bless, bye

Dr. Adeola: Thank you too Bye

I look forward to following Dr. Adeola’s journey and contributions to society and sharing more of her story and the lives she is touching. In another post, I will share photos and stories of young people I met at the Tie & Dye Training which held in Ibadan for young people. It was sponsored by STEMHUB Foundation.

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer
Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee
Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

Guest Interview: A Political Scientist Clicking Away with Her Camera

My eyes, ears, and heart are always tuned to catch real-life stories at events, training or workshops. So here was I trying to take a few photos at a Management and Leadership conference for Female Journalists; this lady kept bumping into me or was it me interfering with her professional photography work. And look at me holding a simple Android phone trying to take my amateur pictures😀 After bumping into her a few times the light in my head turned on! 🌞🌞 The writer in me asked, “what’s her story? So here I am ready to bring this beautiful damsel’s story to you. An interesting, down to earth chat it was. Enjoy meeting this talent. 

Interview :
Me: What is your name? Any brand or pet name?

Tiwa: My name is Tiwatope Badmus… My brand name is Tiwa Badmus Photography.

Me: Could you share the schools you attended?

Tiwa: I had my secondary school at Adesina College, Ibadan.
Then I proceeded to the University of Ibadan where I studied Political Science.

Me: What was growing up like for you

Tiwa: Growing up for me was two-sided… We used to leave somewhere that I termed as a ghetto. I learned a whole lot as a young girl of 5. Street fights and drinking was the order of the day.  so I learned a lot of self-defense. I was a really gentle kid growing up.Then by age 6, we moved to a new environment where our movement was restricted then I became the ‘get inside’ kinda kid. I was a very shy girl throughout my secondary school days. But as soon as I entered the university I began to build up the courage to meet and approach people.

Me: Photography! How did you get into photography, what was your motivation?

Tiwa: Photography has always been in me. I remembered as a secondary school student how I used to save my lunch money so I can go take pictures with my friends… How I used to capture the sun moon and stars with my First camera phone which was a Nokia C1.
My Motivation: When I was in 300L at the university there was this very long ASUU strike that broke out and I decided to learn Photography as a passion and then it became my career path.

Me: Do you do anything else besides photography?

Tiwa: Right now, I don’t do any side jobs… I only do photography.

Me: Is it lucrative, I mean pay your bills?

Tiwa: Photography is a very lucrative job.. Especially when it comes to events. I have met several people I would have never imagined if I was on other jobs within a short span of time.

Me: What has been your challenge following this career path?

Tiwa: The first challenge was procuring all the necessary equipment… OMG!!! Photography can be a very expensive biz to start with. Getting clients too was another challenge but when you know what you are doing and they see your work, they will eventually want you to work for them. As a female photographer, I have had experiences of some sexually related insults like a guy was trying to hit me on my back(bum) the other day.

Me: When you feel like giving up, stressed out, what keeps you going?

Tiwa: My passion for the job keeps me going. Most of the time I don’t look at the money. I work because I enjoy what I do which is why I am into so many voluntary groups.

Me: So if I want to become a photographer like you *wink, what do I need to do?

Tiwa: What you need to be a good photographer is in You. You need just your eyes to see something picture worthy of your environment. And then you need to be creative with that you can get behind the cameras and shoot your shot!!! It doesn’t take long to learn if you put your mind to it. In the space of 2 weeks, you can start shooting!

Me: You must have a favorite food…

Tiwa: My favorite food will always be Amala with Abula as a core Yoruba girl that I am 😃

Me: What is your parting word for young people like yourself especially ladies?

Tiwa: Believe in yourself, believe you can do it… Birth your dreams in Prayers. Don’t ever let anyone talk you down from following your passion.
You are strong
You are powerful
You are beautiful!!!

Me: I am so having fun and enjoying your story but hey we to wrap it up somehow😀. On a final note, what else would you like to share about yourself?

Tiwa: I am a Christian and I love God with all my heart.

Me: Don’t go away without giving out your social media handles

Tiwa: Instagram @tiwabadmus_photography
Facebook page @tiwabadmus_photography
Twitter @i_am_tiwatope
Thank you very much for the opportunity, ma’am. I do not take this for granted… I am so very grateful🙏🙏🙏

Hope you enjoyed meeting Tiwa? Go leave your dream, don’t let anything stop you!

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Project Director Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Radio Drama.
Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee
Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com