Friday, 14 June 2013

Paddy supports TEDxKids@AsoRock on an amazing day in Abuja!

A member of the TEDxEuston team, Paddy Anigbo was recently in Abuja, Nigeria to support TEDxKids@AsoRock. This is his story - unedited! 

As preparations for TEDxEuston 2013 gathers pace, the team has settled on "RIPPLE EFFECT" as a theme. In the past 2 years, one of our points of conversation, has been the importance of sharing our TEDx experience and knowledge with other TEDx programs on the continent.

So when Ujuaku Akukwe, licencee for TEDxKids@AsoRock reached out to me for support, it presented a good opportunity to start the ripple effect.

With each passing week, I shared useful tools, templates and general advice by email with the team in Abuja, Nigeria. It was really exciting to see how much work they had done to prepare. The speaker list looked interesting with no less than 3 kids 8 to 14 years featured alongside some good role models like my dear friend, Kandibe Eya. Amongst the speakers were young leaders like Ezekeil Solesi and Omojuwa Japhet.

As the date approached, it became necessary to consider some level of practical support to add to what we had collaborated on. A business trip to Lagos offered a chance to attend and support the event and after much thought and with the family's support, I booked my trip to start with the event in Abuja.

On arrival, I met a team with bags of passion but needing help to articulate how to manage their "on the day" activities. Thankfully the experience we have at TEDxEuston came to bear. A marathon sleepless 48 hours followed with my hotel room converted to a makeshift project office!

Speaker prep was completed along with rehearsals especially for the kids, stage plan was implemented, registration plans were finalised and we got the most critical aspect of the day organised - the "RUN DOWN" as my colleagues and I have fondly called it over the years.

Finally it was Monday morning, Children's Day all over the world and a public holiday for kids in Nigeria. The team arrived very early and proceeded to complete setting up from where they stopped at 1am - barely 7 hours earlier.

In a full frontal challenge of conventional wisdom, delegates arrived well on time!!!! Finally, Ujuaku opened the event and the day ran through as smoothly as possible.

I can't say much about the individual talks as you have to keep an eye on for their release. You don't want to miss them.

And performances.....!

My day was spent in the engine room reminiscent of my first TEDxEuston event as a team member - just slides and controls for company.

The day ended with everyone in a typical high energy mode. It was obvious to me that the team had delivered. I was really blown away by their passion, dedication and zeal and ....I was so proud to have had the privilege of being part of it. The speakers were ever so graceful and the delegates were very good sport indeed.

Oh, and they had Naija food!!! Yes!!!

My memory of TEDxKids@AsoRock 2013 will always be one of pride and hope in my country, and continent. The usual things that seek to divide Nigeria were totally absent - no state of origin, tribe, religion, social status etc. All these were nowhere to be found as Nigerians as one came together to create a day befitting of Children's Day in the heart of our country's capital that left us all breathless at the possibilities.

THE RIPPLE EFFECT!! Bring on TEDxEuston 2013!!!!!!!!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment