Olakunle Adewale is from Nigeria. He is an artist, art educator, media consultant, social media director and head of communication department RCCG Freedom Court, Nigeria. He is a published author, public speaker, performance poet, event manager and capacity builder for community development projects in Nigeria. OlaKunle is the Founder and Creative Arts Director of Tender Arts Nigeria, an organization that uses art to improve the life outcomes of children and young people with focus on art education, talent development and community development and He has impacted over 500 beneficiaries in Nigeria in three years.
As a creative director of Tender Arts Nigeria, He has worked as a resource person for civil society, government agency and organized Therapeutic art workshops for Children living with Cancer Foundation by mobilizing the youths in the community through art trainings, leadership talks, group discussions and workshops. He and his team have also worked with Sickle cell Foundation Nigeria and organized a therapeutic art workshop for children with special needs. The Special Correctional Centre for Girls under care of Lagos State is part of his empowerment program for the girl-child through creativity arts community project.
Olakunle is currently working on Therapeutic Art Projects for Children and Young Adults in Nigeria. Among them include Children Living with Cancer Foundation, Sickle Cell Foundation Nigeria, Children with Autism, Children with Down syndrome Foundation and a Rehabilitation center (Special Correctional Centre for Girls, Lagos Nigeria. This project is aimed at healing children and young adults psychologically, socially, educationally, mentally and emotionally. The participants in this therapeutic art project are within age of range 7 to 30. This was borne out his passion to create a platform where no child or young person will be disadvantaged from being educated because of disabilities. It is his community development project which he believes would help the recipients by using art therapy platform create self-awareness, self-esteem and develop social skills.
Because of his passion for the girl-child, He has mentored so many girls in Nigeria who are his protégés. Many of whom has received National Awards, participated in local, national and international art exhibitions and competitions and won many laurels like the Nigeria’s Youngest Peace Ambassador, a 10 year old girl who is using her creative arts to advocate for Peace in Nigeria. Among many others. Olakunle recently joined over 1000 YALI Network members and other United States Ambassadors to pledge “Africa4Her” an initiative of the United States of America.
He has pledged to invest in women by holding workshops with focus on therapeutic art and development of vocational skills. The art produced at these workshops will be publicly displayed and put up for exhibition and auction, with profits going directly back to women and girls who participate. This was published on YALI Network as Ten Exemplary Pledges, One of which is Olakunle Adewale pledge of #Africa4Her.
Olakunle is one of the young African leaders shortlisted to participate in the Mandela Washington Fellow 2015 and Young African Leaders Initiative by President Barrack Obama in Washington DC. He was nominated for the global teacher prize 2014, an event to honour an exceptional teacher organized by Varkey Foundation in the United Kingdom. His works and that his protégés have been featured on various social media with over 200,000 viewers in Africa. This include Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Facebook page, YALI Network Face2face Facebook page, Nigeria Centenary Facebook page, Tender Arts Nigeria Facebook page and his personal Facebook page. His works has also been published in print and electronic media with over 1 million viewers across Nigeria and Africa.
He has had the opportunity of meeting the Top Political leaders in Nigeria and the world through his art presentations. These include the Secretary General of the Federation of Nigeria in 2013, Senator Pius Anyim, President of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan February 2014 and the President of European Union Jose Manuel Barosso. He sees himself as a lead consultant to the ministry of education, Culture and Tourism, Youths, Sports and social Development on projects that will benefit the Nigerian citizens. Olakunle wants African children and youths to see him as their biggest inspiration to overcome learning disabilities and become successful citizens.