UNESCO jingle: LASU alumni’s entry makes top 10, as student receives Diana Award 2020

An entry submitted to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) for the “Call for Jingle/Short videos against dis-and mis-information on COVID-19” by four alumni of the Lagos State University (LASU) emerged among the top 10 best for the competition. On the other hand, Toluwalashe Soyemi, a 400 Level Medical student from Lagos State University College of Medicine (LASUCOM) was honoured with the Diana Award Roll of Honour 2020. CYRIACUS NNAJI reports.

The entry submitted to the UNESCO for the “Call for Jingle/Short videos against the dis-and misinformation on COVID-19” by four alumni of the Lagos State University emerged among the top 10 best for the competition

The call for jingle was necessitated in a bid to engage the African youths, through their creativities, to curtail the widespread of false information, especially on social media, that is ravaging even more than the global Covid-19 pandemic itself.

The alumni, Elias Sanni, Olusegun Giwa, Sandra Animam and Babatunde Gandonu who are recent graduates from the School of Communication, Lagos State University, took to the call and worked remotely to come up with the creative that emerged among the top 10 best amidst 41 other entries.

All winners were announced on the 30th of June on a live webinar organized by the UNESCO Abuja Regional

Headquarters titled, “Youth Power in Combating Mis- and Disinformation on COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond.” In attendance at the event was the honourable minister for Youths and Sports, Nigeria, Mr. Sunday Dare and minister for Youth Affairs in Sierra Leone, Mr. Mohamed Orman Bangura, among others.

Winners will be awarded with certificates and gift prizes and an opportunity to become members of the Youth Alliance for Media and Information Literacy (YAMIL) to combat mis- and disinformation.

The alumni, through their talents and skills, acquired through learning and teachings from their alma mater have been adding value, through their many creatives, to the institution during their university days and won’t stop doing exploits.

Meanwhile, Toluwalashe Soyemi of the institution has received Diana Award Roll of Honour 2020. Soyemi, a 400 Level Medical student from Lagos State University College of Medicine (LASUCOM) was honoured with the Diana Award for going above and beyond in his daily life to create and sustain positive change in their community. The Diana Award established in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales, is the highest accolade and most prestigious award a young person can achieve for social action or humanitarian efforts.

After rigorous selection process, Toluwalashe was selected alongside 184 recipients from 35 countries, of which he was one of the 9 Nigerians selected.

Toluwalashe Soyemi is an outstanding Hero who at age of 18 years old, co-founded Protostar Initiative, a youth-led social venture committed to providing mental health education in communities whilst advocating for the destigmatisation of mental health conditions.

As the Team Lead, Tolu works with local communities to train young people in mental health first aid and raise awareness in schools and other youth organisations. These training sessions dispel common myths and help people to recognise symptoms and access support mechanisms for mental health conditions.

In lieu of the international pandemic that has restricted movements, Tolu and his team worked on a project that aims to provide online mental health services (counseling, therapy, etc) to 1000 people within 6 months for free.

Tolu is campaigning for a world in which everyone is educated on mental health and where every person with a mental health condition can access the support they need.

This is not the first time that Tolu would be putting LASU on the global map as last year, he was recently selected on a fully-funded scholarship to represent Nigeria in Shenzhen, China for the Unleash Innovation Lab as a United Nation SDG Talent to pitch his project on mental health and has gotten multiple international opportunities in support of his project on mental health.

Tessy Ojo, CEO of The Diana Award, says: “We congratulate all our new Diana Award recipients who are change-makers for their generation. We know by receiving this honour they will inspire more young people to get involved in their communities and begin their own journey as active citizens. For over twenty years The Diana Award has valued and invested in young people encouraging them to continue to make positive change in their communities and lives of others.”

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