There was another inspiring event on the block. It was the Extraordinary Lady Speaks Conference 18 June 2016.
100 women from across varied disciplines, different ethnicities and diverse geographical locale, were awarded the LIFTEFFECTS Star Award 2016 in celebration and recognition of their selfless act of service to their communities and humanity. According to the organisers, these women “are making the world and its environment, noticeably better than they met it”. Many women were nominated worldwide, by the very people whose lives they have impacted and 100 were eventually chosen based on the degree of impact and other standards set by the organizers to get an award.
This is one event Team LR was keen about for three main reasons. The first reason was that the objective of this annual event, which was not just only to celebrate women from across the globe who are making a difference in our world today, but also to have them share their stories of how they became POSSIBLE to encourage us all to do more for our community resonates with our LR mission of “borderless motivation”. The second reason was that one of LR very first feature Ava ‘Eagle’ Brown was on hand to receive an award. Thirdly, our very own CEO of the LR Team was herself nominated for and received an award too.
It was a very colorful event. All the speakers had nuggets of wisdom for us from their different life experiences. Time and space will not permit us to mention them all but nonetheless; we appreciated every single one of them!!
Left to right, Loretta Ogboro-Okor, Ayo Itoya and Ava ‘Eagle’ Brown.
Nadine Benjamin, the multitalented Soprano Singer, Mentor, Coach, and author set the speech ball rolling. In her own unique way she explained to us how “Everybody can! – even when someone tells you, you can’t”! Guess what, she ended her presentation with some live soprano display.
Karen Johnson, the ex model and now the famous author of the book Out of the Corner and anti-domestic violence and anti-mental abuse campaigner, drew our attention to domestic violence and its societal ills, urging us do all we can each in our own way to stop it. “I stand and respect every victim of DV – you can get out of that relationship because you are possible. Let us make everybody possible” she said.
Waynette Peters (Lady Million) inspired the audience with her exceptional life story of riches to abject poverty to homelessness and to being saved by the Grace of God. She told us how she picked up the pieces and once again became relevant across multiple disciplines of entrepreneurship and community mentoring enhancing gender relevance, economic growth and leadership development. Waynette left us with these words of wisdom that “no matter what happens, no matter what you are going through, never look at those next to you. It is those forgotten that will always help us. I have learnt to serve, for in serving, I have found a new meaning – speaking positively, even in times of challenges.”
Waynette Peters (Lady Million) , elegance and inspiration rolled into one.
The Zumba dance interlude with Joy Ekeledo aka Mama Joy showed us how age is just a number. This 77 year old retired Midwife and now fitness instructor got the whole hall active with her ‘twerking’ Zumba moves. She told us, and showed us how anything; just anything is possible – dancing like a teenager.
Princess Moradeun Adedoyin-Solarin (Arise) was on hand to tell us about her work as the chair, board of trustees Girl Child Network Worldwide. This erudite TV broadcaster and multitalented lady of our time, told us how hard the GCNW works and how they had managed to empower about 375 000 girls across the globe. She told us how “women must make sure they reach out to and touch one another. We need to get up from our boxes! We need to arise! Stand-up and speak-out to break the culture of silence! We need to say no to girl child molestation!
There was no way an event of this nature, celebrating women and enabling a level playing environment for females worldwide would have ended without mention of “The Chibok girls” and what they have come to represent. On hand to do this was none better suited than Adaobi Nwubani. This world renowned Journalist with her passion for “ telling the stories of those who cannot tell their own stories”, not only cried herself but also moved the hall to tears as she gave us first hand information of life in Chibok. “You may not all be able to march into Sambisa Forest and rescue all the girls, but we can each be aware and do whatever we can do in our own little way”.
Lady Sherry Ann Dixion! This was one lady who connected with the audience with her passion, energy and audacity. The versatile Sherry Ann, told us how she surmounts challenges and continues to strive for excellence in all she does – becoming a name worthy of reckon on the Global TV and Multi-media Scene, empowering other women with the “ Women on the Crossroads CIC UK” initiative. She told us how she is passionate about any person who makes a difference because not many people seek to make a difference. “I can and I will. Who says you can’t? Somebody has to do it, and I will”. It was core reflection time for us all in the hall as she went further to leave us with the injunctions that “if you want to do something and are going to do it half way, do not do it at all”.
To Sandra Nelson and the Lift Effects Team, we say a big thank you for devoting your time, energy and resources selflessly, to give the world this platform to celebrate excellence – celebrating these women who are Stars and role models. We encourage you and your team to keep shinning the light!
For us at LR, we are pleased to reiterate just as our current team leader said at the award ceremony, that this award is for all of us and we dedicate it to two groups of people. The first group is those women who have ever lost their lives in the course of their ‘reproductive duty’ for as a wise man once said in Benin City, Nigeria, “that they may live to reap the fruit of their labour”. The second group we dedicate this award to, are those men, who are men enough to support women worldwide, in the struggle for gender flexibility.