This month’s maiden edition of Scawab’s Young Person of the Month is Olowo Omotoke Titilope from Lagos, Nigeria! Olowo Omotoke is the founder of The Autism Awareness Place, which focuses on the campaign, advocacy and teachers’ training for the inclusion of children with disabilities especially children on Autism Spectrum Disorder.
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Guidance and Counselling and a National Certificate in Education. She is a YALI RLC Fellow, an Ashoka Changemaker and a 2018 Mandela Washington Fellow. Olowo Omotoke is the OD Impact Challenge 2017 third-place winner.
OLOWO OMOTOKE TITILOPE Olowo Omotoke Titilope has over five years of progressive experience in education, community service, volunteering and advocacy for children living with disabilities. She is a special needs educator and her focus is on helping children with Autism, ADHD in communication and social skills. She is passionate and committed about raising awareness for children with disabilities, inclusion and community service.
Her belief that every child can learn and each child counts irrespective of their disability or socio-economic background, led her to start The Autism Awareness Place (TAAP), in 2017 where she and her team cater for children with disabilities through therapy and creative learning and teacher’s training, especially for children on the Autism Spectrum Disorder.
The ill-treatment and stigmatization people living with disabilities have to face on a daily basis coupled with the fact that one of her friends is physically challenged further fuels her passion. Her inspiration comes from the happiness she sees on the faces of parents after each session with them and the fact that she can make a difference in her community.
Her Community Engagements
The Autism Awareness Place
Omotoke has facilitated training on creative learning for children with cancer in LUTH and children at Modupe Cole Children’s home and has organized seminars for over 70 teachers in five different schools in 2017 on how to teach and train children with disabilities. Another 200 people were trained virtually on how to support children living with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
The Autism Awareness Place (TAAP), reached over 1000 people in Oworonshoki Community through Our Walk Aware Autism to raise awareness about Autism, teacher’s training, and secondary school students’ outreach. In the future, TAAP hopes to work with schools on how to adequately mainstream children with disabilities with proper follow-up, grassroots campaigns, and awareness, as awareness creates acceptance.
One of the major setbacks Olowo Omotoke has experienced was when they had planned to host a program in a school for teachers but was forced to postpone due to inadequate communication. They however pushed through with the program after re-arranging, re-strategizing and adequate planning.
Her Advice to the Youth
It is better to ‘Do It Afraid’ than to do nothing. It won’t be easy at the beginning and there will always be those who think you can do it or who don’t believe in you but you have everything to proof to yourself that you are strong and brave and you can do anything you put your mind to. Like my mentor will say, “Just start and keep shattering glasses.”.
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