“Joy Tiku Enighe was an amazing woman with a beautiful heart that was dedicated to children’s causes”
Discrimination of marginalised children, Girls' education, Global Youth Ambassadors, Right to education, What is advocacy?
Read some wonderful tributes to the Global Youth Ambassador from Nigeria - a young leader who campaigned for every child to get a quality education.
Joy Tiku Enighe, who sadly died recently, was a passionate Global Youth Ambassador who believed “education empowers, strengthens and protects children in multiple ways”. And – most importantly – “Africa’s young voices must not be ignored, they must be heard”.
In her memory, some of her fellow Global Youth Ambassadors have celebrated the amazing young leader that she was and her achievements. Here are their memories of Joy.
As a native of Ikom LGA in Cross River State, Nigeria, Joy was a Social Impact Media Awards Ambassador, an A World at School Global Youth Ambassador, a Commonwealth Youth Council Peace Ambassador, a Take Care Group Ambassador and CEO of Youth Power Initiative.
She was the Director of Development at Socio-Community Youth Association of Nigeria (SCOYAN), a social and agribusiness entrepreneur, a youth advocate for good governance and youth participation, a blogger, a writer, a reader, a learner, a friend, a sister, a companion, a daughter, a mentor, a volunteer, a social and community service worker, who was passionate about ICT, innovation, creativity and tech.
She championed group activities by Global Youth Ambassadors in Nigeria and sought to meet with fellow Global Youth Ambassadors whenever she attended programmes and events where they were present. This was how we got to meet at the Media and Information Literacy Pan African conference in Abuja in December 2015 after several online chats.
Uchechukwu Onyinye Arinze
Joy Tiku Enighe was a passionate education champion in the northern regions of Nigeria. She was recognised by the Global Youth Ambassadors of Nigeria as our “GYA President” who always mobilised us to take action through advocacy and campaigns.
Global Youth Ambassadors in Lagos, Abuja and Edo states followed her initiative in Ajegunle Lagos and reached out to children living at the internally displaced persons camp in Kuchingoro, distributing education supplies to each child.
Joy was a visionary who was passionate about early years education. Her ability to lead and foster unity amongst Global Youth Ambassadors and mobilise her team and fellow Global Youth Ambassadors for advocacy and campaigns will be greatly missed.
Olawoore Victor Samuel
Joy Thiku Enighe was an amazing woman with a beautiful heart which was dedicated to children’s causes. Joy worked with Nigerian Global Youth Ambassadors and her coordinating and leadership abilities will be greatly missed. On behalf of every child and life you have impacted – Joy, I say thank you and rest in peace to a great woman.
Olowo Omotoke Titilope
I will never forget the time we spoke about Global Youth Ambassadors and what we can do as individuals to make a difference. Joy was an awesome, amazing and selfless leader, with a way of reassuring us all that society can be great. We will always love her.
Isaac Success Omoyele
To me, Joy was the definition of selflessness, friendship, leadership and a great education enthusiast. She would often check up on others and reached out to me to involve me in projects relating to education.
Joy accepted everyone and her passion towards education, especially for the girl child, is inspirational.
I am personally renaming the scholarship arm of my organisation The Joy Tiku Memorial Programme, in order to keep her memory alive. This programme will sponsor the education of five girls yearly through their primary school education in honour of our beloved Joy. I am thankful to have had some fellow Global Youth Ambassadors collaborate with me to achieve this.
In the words of Joy, “the greatest loss is not death but what dies inside of us when we live”.
Throughout her lifetime Joy was such a wonderful person. She fought for children's rights and was a lover of all. May her soul rest in peace. Raji Oluwatobi Oriyomi
I knew Joy from afar, yet she was close to me and always ready to help whenever help was needed. Joy, remembering you every day is easy for me, but since your departure missing you is a heartache that never goes away. May the Lord grant her eternal rest.
Although we haven’t met in person since our appointment as Nigeria’s Global Youth Ambassadors in 2014, I can say that Joy Tiku Enighe was an angel in human form.
Working in non-profit in Nigeria can be hard for obvious reasons. The poor economy bars individuals and corporate organisations from supporting noble initiatives but this changed when I met Joy through the Global Youth Ambassadors project.
Joy pushed you to get things done. She would commit her all in order to get results for education and children’s causes. She changed my perspective about impact, especially starting with what you have and where you are.
I have initiated many projects, including a nationwide radio programme called The Education Dialogue with Elvis Boniface, because Joy’s exemplary life showed it was possible.
Esu Nnamso Innocent
We all have different memories of Joy Tiku Enighe, but one thing we all have in common is how she loved and lived for vulnerable children.
She had the most amazing strength and tenacity that every single person who came into contact with her could feel. Joy believed that every child has the right to basic quality education. Likewise, young people must be given equal opportunities to achieve their potential, irrespective of their ability or disability.
We were privileged to have had such an amazing, strong woman in Nigeria, who cared deeply for children. We will always remember her as a leader, a fighter, a lover, a nurturer and a very resilient woman with strong ethics.
Joy’s courage, determination and sense of humour is something we will always carry with us – and we hope that we can display those same characteristics, especially during trying times.
Let me close with a quote from an unknown author. “A great leader will deflect credit to his people. A bad leader will look to take the credit.” Joy Tiku Enighe was definitely in the former category. Even in her last message to the Nigerian children, she said “working for you was her greatest joy outside of her family”.
Joy was more than just a Global Youth Ambassador, she was a leader in her own right. She lived by her convictions about how education should improve quality of life.
I remember how passionately she gave herself to initiatives led by others, how she drove collaboration, how she radiated hope with her smile – either in high-level policy meetings with stakeholders or in rural communities with younger girls.
One of the several things we did together was getting a state government in Nigeria to commit to improving education. Joy’s heart and work will not be forgotten. We celebrate Joy, with joy!