From pain to power: Augustina’s story

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From pain to power: Augustina’s story

Augustina Ojochenemi Ahman, a committed advocate of gender equality and founder of Girls RiseUp Foundation, took part in the Leaders of Africa Fellowship Program.


Augustina Ojochenemi Ahman comes from Nigeria. She studied Religious Studies at Kogi State College, Anyigba, and is committed to combating sexual abuse and violence against women and girls.


Nigeria is one of the countries where sexual violence occurs with tragic frequency. According to several studies, 30 to 40 percent of girls and women have experienced sexual abuse. Due to a culture of stigmatization that prevents victims from reporting the incidents, the number of unreported cases is estimated to be even higher.


I encourage them to speak out by sharing my experiences as a survivor”, says Augustina, whose community projects have already won several awards.


Motivated to make an even bigger change, she founded the Born to Live Initiative in March 2023, before registering the non-profit organization as the Girls RiseUp Foundation in February 2024. “The Girls RiseUp Foundation focuses on combating sexual abuse by providing educational support and skills development to at-risk girls in rural areas”, says Augustina. As the foundation is still quite young, it does not yet have a website. But if you want to find out more about them, you can get in touch via LinkedIn and other social media channels.


Also through LinkedIn, Augustina learned about the Leaders of Africa Fellowship Program, a collaboration between the Bluvard Education Initiative and SkillEd, which is a 15-week leadership development training and one-on-one mentoring program for young emerging leaders, activists and entrepreneurs across Africa.


I wasted no time in applying. I always wanted to have a mentor to give me practical guidance along the way and the Leader of Leaders program offered me mentoring sessions” . After being selected for the program, Augustina quickly found a favorite topic in the course: “I liked the self-leadership topic on the SkillEd platform the most. It taught me to lead myself while leading others.”


My learning experience went smoothly because the SkillEd platform is user-friendly and easy to navigate. You don’t have to learn how to use it.” Looking back on the training, Augustina concludes that it has made a big difference, both in her personal life and in her work. “The program taught me to think critically, to organize and measure the impact of my project and to manage my stakeholders and team members.