2019 Recap: Ajilla Girls Leadership Development Program

On June 22nd the Ajilla Foundation hosted the inaugural Ajilla Girls Leadership Development Program that focused on Leadership, Innovation and Technology!

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Mayowa Awe, PhD in Mathematics shared her education journey and how grit and perseverance got her through.

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The girls were able to build on their public speaking and growth mindset skills by sharing, in a couple of minutes, how to make the world a better place through our innovation challenge.

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We partnered with Codeverse to introduce the girls to coding!

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Three Takeaways from the program:

  1. Don’t Underestimate – I was blown away by the presentations that the girls shared. Some presentations the parents helped with and others they did on their own. The potential is endless, lets continue to nurture it.

  2. Exposure – One of the messages that I received from one of the moms is as follows “My daughter had a great time and now she wants to coding…it’s good though, she can explore her options” This pretty much sums up our purpose. Through the Ajilla Foundation, girls will be introduced and exposed to so much more!

  3. Empower – Many of the presentations during the innovation challenge had to do with how to make the world a better place as it relates to environment and homelessness. There’s no better time than now to drive change, lets empower the girls to drive change in their communities.

Below are the winners from the innovation challenge and comments from one of our amazing judges, Bunmi Ishola

Ponle - Winner age 8 -10

Faith - Winner age 11- 13

The environment and homelessness was a big theme for these girls, including Ponle who won the 8-10 category. They challenged us to consider carpooling to work/school/activities, plant trees, use metal straws, pick up litter when we see it (but also plan days to do cleanup in our neighborhoods).

Faith, who shared about edible coffee cups. First of all, the girl had a PowerPoint. I learned about PPT in high school, not when I was 11. It was so organized and had visuals and was just a clear presentation. She also was able to answer questions that we threw at her without blinking an eye. And she knew about a company trying to actual bring edible coffee cups to the market. She also just challenged us all to think about how we can reduce waste since as adults we tend to drink a lot of coffee (or tea) and paper/styrofoam cups are causing major pollution.

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Toni - Runner Up Age 8 -10

Favor - Runner Up Age 11 – 13

Toni also shared about making the world a better place by loving the environment that we are in.

Favor shared what innovation meant to her but went beyond just the definition. She pointed out that about 80% of innovators tend to be men and challenged us girls/women to change that narrative. We are all ultimately capable of innovation and so we shouldn't let the guys get all the glory. I love that take on this questions since this was a girls' leadership event.

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Here’s what some of the guests had to say…

“It gave my daughter another vision that she didn't know she had. Great event!”

“Programs rocks”

“Was very impressed with the program and how well organized it was”

“The girls had fun! Congratulations, it was a beautiful event and an inspiring success. Bravo.”

“Thank you for inviting us out to the event tonight. Was so well organized and a great experience.”

Thank you to the event sponsors!