Naija Graphic Designers (“NGD”), a technology-driven community of practice for creative professionals founded by Daniel Emeka and Olaolu Obende in 2008, wins the globally renowned Facebook Community Accelerator Programme, a keenly contested Facebook Leadership Programme aimed at expanding the positive impact of innovative communities in the world.
NGD is an innovative community for creative artists in Africa. Originated and managed out of Nigeria, NGD serves as a hub for experienced creative professionals and upcoming creative artists, providing an interactive platform for knowledge exchange, training, grooming and benchmarking. In addition, NGD serves as a facilitator for access to over 123,000 community members comprising creative designers of multiple disciplines, creative enthusiasts and a host of other business managers across the globe looking to hire graphic designers, in a country where access to professionals Is increasingly difficult.
Leveraging on the Accelerator Programme, Facebook would provide custom training with access to one-on-one mentorship and curate strategic partnership for Naija Graphic Designers, with the objective of enhancing NGDs impact and developing innovative offerings relevant for upscaling the activities of Naija Graphic Designers and more importantly optimizing its value proposition to the ecosystem and broader global community. In addition, Facebook, with GlobalGiving is offering USD50,000 in grants to NGD to deepen its’ new Initiatives with potential access to additional funding for enhanced development. Juliet Godwin, the Manager and Principal Administrator of NGD, who would spend the next five months learning and collaborating with global experts across different spheres and geographies, hopes to leverage the Facebook Accelerator Programme in strengthening the NGD community of practice in Nigeria and the broader African continent, curate requisite partnerships for advancing the strategic objectives of the community and more importantly deepening value propositions to its growing members, including young talents, greenhorns seeking career opportunities in the creative design industry.
Announcing the Award, Facebook noted; “In 2008, Naija Graphic Designers was created to give creative designers a voice and share practical approaches on being a successful creative in Nigeria. In the community, creative designers in Nigeria are able to learn, share experiences, participate in challenges, collaborate, grow and thrive as creative entrepreneurs. Now with over 123,000 members, several community members have secured jobs from the exposure in design challenges, and have elevated the creative design practice.”
Speaking on the Award, Founder, Daniel Emeka said; “It’s been a great and exciting journey, albeit not without challenges. I am proud of our growing members, who have over the past decade proven the power of collaboration, rekindled the creativity of youths and channelled their energy into productive activities helping to grow our economy and build a positive social environment. I am excited about the future, as NGD hopes to revolutionize the creative design practice and create value for all stakeholders.”
Also commenting on the Award, ‘Laolu Obende noted; “I would like to thank Facebook for this recognition. It validates the compelling potentials of NGD, creates a new global learning experience for our administrators and more importantly affords new opportunities for our growing members, to who we dedicate this award. I, therefore, congratulate our members for the Award and also felicitate with peer winners in Africa; Prepare For Jamb UTME, Protect The Child Foundation, Wanderlust Dairies Limited, Mothers Kids and More (MKM), Natural Hair Babes, The Official Ocean View/Slangkop group, Tales of Nigerians, Naija Nurses Forum, Nigerian Teachers, Portfolio 9 Community, South African Arts & Culture Youth Forum, and Teachers’ Notice Board Kenya. NGD’s pride and strength lie in its membership, hence Daniel and I would continue to seek innovative ways of delivering value to our members, whose commitment to our vision of elevating the creative design practice remains our most fascinating motivation. Working with a reputable global institution like Facebook reinforces our strategy of forging global alliances and partnerships to create value for our community and the broader creative ecosystem.”
NGD has proven to be a grooming centre for thousands of creative professionals, helping to train and mentor youths for gainful employment and entrepreneurship, with thousands of its members headhunted by local and global media and entertainment firms, tech companies and creative agencies whilst hundreds have grown into entrepreneurs creating jobs for the teeming unemployed youths.
NGDs immediate Initiatives will seek to enhance collaborations in the creative community, leveraging Facebooks’ platform, optimize access to design resources for media agencies and direct corporates, including small, medium and large enterprises while engaging creative artists of several design disciplines on projects across the globe broadening their entrepreneurial potential with access to more income streams says NGD’s Chief Technology Officer (CTO) – Emeka Maduaeke. This initiative will help to enhance local content, in a country like Nigeria where skill gaps continue to undermine confidence in native service providers.