Briefly tell us about yourself and your organization.
My name is Anne Obize, I am the founder of Teens Connect Africa. Teens Connect Africa is a social enterprise that provides teenagers in undeserved communities with access to mentorship, resources, and opportunities to develop their talents and become productive members of society. Since its establishment in 2020, the organization has made significant strides in impacting the lives of teenagers. Through monthly mentorship meetings and online content, we have reached over 1350 teenagers in the Zuba community, Abuja and over 3500 others online. We have successfully organized two editions of “The Talent Development Program,” a creativity exhibition and talent mentorship conference, which positively impacted 245 teenagers. Overall, we actively contribute to sustainable and equitable quality education and economic development by empowering teenagers in undeserved communities with valuable skills and opportunities for personal and community development.
What motivated you to start your social enterprise?
Having lived in the Zuba community for over 15 years, I have witnessed many teenagers in the community fall into social vices such as high dropout rate, teenage pregnancy, cultism, gangsterism, etc, due to poverty, lack of exposure, and mentorship. To address this issue, we founded Teens Connect Africa in 2020. Our platform provides mentorship, resources, and opportunities to teenagers in undeserved communities, helping them develop their talents and become productive members of society.
So far, what has been the impact of your social enterprise?
We have reached over 1350 teenagers in the Zuba community and 3500 others online through monthly mentorship meetings and online content. we collaborated with Global Changemakers to implement the “Talent Development and Skill Acquisition Project” providing 3 months of intensive training to 50 teenagers in the community. We collaborated with Women Who Win Africa to provide capacity development training for teenage girls, benefiting over 30 Zuba community girls.
What are the major challenges you are currently facing in your social enterprise?
The major challenge we’re facing is finding a permanent venue for our monthly mentorship meetings, as the one we currently use costs us monthly for its use. Having our own venue will enable us engage the teenagers better through tailored tasks, having dedicated talent clubs room for interactive and innovative practices. We can also set up a skill acquisition center for out-of-school teens and after-school trainings.
Mention one big change you will like to see in your line of work e.g. policy change, behavior change, institutional support, more collaboration etc.
We look forward to collaborations between public and private organizations and applicable policies that will create opportunity for talent and skill development especially for undeserved communities.
Do you have a final message for a budding social entrepreneur who is interested in your field of work?
You are not too young to start making an impact. There is always a smaller version of the more significant ideas and visions in your heart, so start where you are and with what you have.