This is Kelechi Madu. He is 17 years old and comes from a humble family in a rural community in eastern Nigeria. Normally, he would have completed primary school and probably become a child labourer. Secondary school or university would have been very difficult if not impossible. John Uwaeke heard about the bright young man and sponsored him through secondary school. This year he will sit his final examinations. Kelechi hopes to study Electrical Engineering or Civil Engineering at university.
It takes more than this diploma though: Kelechi received the opportunity to do a computer course and through the Buddy2Buddy (B2B) initiative he was then given a laptop and trained as a trainer. He is now one of 2 pioneer instructors who are a vital link in the Catalyst4Change programme. It is not enough to simply collect or buy second-hand laptops and donate these to remote and poor communities and schools in eastern Nigeria: the children need to be taught how to use them.
Without B2B or C4C, Kelechi would not have been able to develop his tenacity for learning and his innate leadership abilities. Without a laptop, or computer skills, he would have little chance of competing for a place at university. His self-esteem has blossomed, he is training other young people in IT and through that more youngsters will have better chances to succeed at school but also to have options to stay and work in their communities and not join the many who are forced to seek work in the cities.
Bid for a Boss. 27 April. Register now. And bid generously.
Free entry. Bar (including a mixologist) and soup from the Suppenstube at reasonable prices. Nibbles and ice-cream for free.