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Hammed Kayode Alabi, Western Union Foundation Fellowship Fellow ’23
Hammed Kayode Alabi, Western Union Foundation Fellowship Fellow ’23

Hammed Alabi, Western Union Foundation Fellowship Fellow ’23


Hammed Kayode Alabi, a visionary social entrepreneur, recently achieved remarkable success as the first runner-up among 47 fellows in the Western Union Foundation Fellowship powered by the Watson Institute. This accomplishment, coupled with his receipt of a $5,000 venture development stipend, reflects his unwavering commitment to democratizing access to 21st-century skills across underserved communities in Africa. In an illuminating interview, Alabi shares his journey, shedding light on the principles and experiences that have shaped his path towards social impact.

Reflecting on his achievement, Alabi expresses a sense of optimism, attributing his success to diligent effort and active participation throughout the fellowship program. He emphasizes the significance of immersing oneself in the learning process, valuing feedback, and maintaining authenticity. Alabi’s strategy revolves around embracing vulnerability and self-awareness, traits that have propelled his growth as a changemaker.

Alabi’s vision for leveraging technology and artificial intelligence to empower underserved communities stems from his personal background. Growing up in Makoko, one of Africa’s notable slums, Alabi experienced firsthand the transformative power of access to education and skills development. Inspired by his own journey, he founded initiatives such as the Skill2Rural Bootcamp and the Kayode Alabi Leadership and Career Initiative (KLCI) to provide young people with opportunities to acquire essential skills.

The $5,000 venture development stipend represents a significant step towards realizing Alabi’s vision. He plans to channel this funding into the development of an ed-tech platform, offering courses tailored to the needs of youth in marginalized communities. Alabi’s approach extends beyond traditional education models; he envisions refurbishing abandoned buildings into innovation centers, reducing greenhouse emissions while providing accessible learning spaces.

Alabi’s commitment to social innovation extends beyond the Western Union Fellowship. His selection for the London Business School Launchpad program underscores his dedication to refining his entrepreneurial skills and expanding his impact. Through the program, Alabi seeks to gain insights into business strategies, branding, and fundraising, recognizing the importance of sustainable models for social change.

Looking ahead, Alabi aims to reach 1 million young people by 2030 through the Skill2Rural Bootcamp ed-tech platform. He emphasizes the role of technology and partnerships in scaling his initiatives, highlighting the potential for exponential growth. Alabi’s advice to fellow changemakers emphasizes resilience, the pursuit of feedback, and a steadfast commitment to purpose-driven action.


Ogunyemi, I. (2024, March 9). Growth is in doing difficult things: In my uneasiness, I find strength – Hammed Alabi, Nigerian who won $5000 fellowship prize. Tribune Online. Read the full article here.