The winner of the 2020 Active Citizenship in Education (ACE) Award is Khalifa Usman. Khalifa founded and currently lead Khalifa Dankadai Company (KDC), which serves as a one stop capacity building shop for emerging and existing entrepreneurs. He also serves as the project director at the KDC Foundation; a charitable NGO focused on education and community development. He led the KDC Foundation’s team in seeking support for the initiative at the level of President Buhari’s office. He concluded a memorandum of understanding with the Nigerian Government National Social Investment Program to support the program.
Because of KDC Foundation’s Community Library Project, over 1000 Almajiris (child street beggars) in Kano State alone are off the street. They have learned to read and write in English and Hausa Language; over one-third of those beneficiaries have also acquired some marketable vocational skills. The project also curbs the influx of Almajiris from rural communities in Kano State and other core northern states through the institutionalization of rural learning and soft skills development centres. The centres train and empower rural children that would have otherwise been sent to the already congested Tsangaya schools in the city. The centres also hold regional stakeholder engagement programs across the core northern states to address interstate Almajiri migration.
Khalifa is a proud alumnus of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP), the U.S State Department’s pioneer professional exchange program. Beyond his engagement with his company and the foundation, Usman promotes various community activities in Kano state and is a role model among his peers. He regularly appears on television and radio stations to advocate for the development of youth in Nigeria through proper education and awareness.