The prestigious Chevening Scholarship was won by 44 Nigerians in 2023, according to the British Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office in Nigeria.
At a pre-departure event held for the latest scholars at the British House, Walter Carrington, Lagos, on September 6, 2023, the Deputy High Commissioner, Johnny Baxter, revealed that Chevening received over 70,000 applications from 160 countries across the globe, with 14,000 of those applications coming from Nigeria alone.
The Deputy High Commissioner further revealed that only 10,000 of those applications qualified for consideration. Out of the 10,000, 44 emerged scholars from Nigeria.
The luck 44 were selected through a thorough, rigorous and credible screening process.
One of the Nigerian Chevening Scholars is Lawyer and development advocate, Aderonke Ige, who has spent over a decade contributing to developments through community mobilisation, policy advocacy and social impact building in communities across Nigeria.
Speaking at the pre-departure event, Aderonke recalled that her passion for development and humanitarian activism stemmed from her experience growing up during the oppressive military regimes in Nigeria.
According to the scholar, she thereafter vowed, as a child, to dedicate herself to creating alternative realities of dignity and sanctity of life for fellow citizens. Three decades along the line, it is apt to say that this young and vibrant non-profit practitioner is still on course birthing that dream into fruition.
Aderonke, who founded Help Initiative for Social Justice and Humanitarian Development in 2019, a platform for hand-holding and community building is also an Associate Director at Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa (CAPPA), where she works with a team of other patriotic Nigerians in delivering social justice through citizens engagements.
She champions advocacies for human right to water, climate justice and good governance.
For over a decade, she has been actively involved in promoting human rights, Gender justice, citizens’ engagements and participatory development through non-profit platforms including New Initiative for Social Development (NISD), Justice Development and Peace Commission, CIVICUS, Help Initiative for Social Justice, CAPPA and so on. She will be studying at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London for a Master of Science in Development studies.
While speaking with our correspondent, a visibly elated Aderonke Ige said: “With each passing day since I was chosen for Chevening, I have been acutely aware of the enormous responsibility that comes with this opportunity. My hope is to deepen my knowledge and expertise, to delve into the intricacies of development and social impact, and to equip myself with additional skills necessary to bring about lasting change and positive impact within and beyond my communities.”