In commemoration of the International Women’s Day (IWD) 2012 which is celebrated on March 8th every year across the world, En-Reach Limited recently championed a unique initiative called the ‘Empowering Women Series’ in line with this year’s IWD theme which is ‘Connecting Girls, Inspiring Futures’. With the underlying message that ‘you can be all you want to be’.
The Empowering Women Series aims to identify, celebrate and support young, dynamic and outstanding women within the ages of 12 and 24 who are doing exceptional things in their field of study or practice with a business focus and are already on the path to greatness; but can benefit significantly from the success story of an inspiring woman who has already walked the path they hope to, connect with and draw inspiration from her.
These young girls were presented to all, at the event which took place in the Agip Hall of the Muson Centre on the 6th of March. According to the initiator of the event, BamitaleAgono, “Following a strict and rigorous internal selection process designed to ensure the right role-model is selected based on the projects objectives, Tara Fela-Durotoye was selected as the premier focal person for ‘The Empowering Women Series’ maiden edition.
A veteran in the beauty industry, Tara Fela-Durotoye has created a phenomenal success story that would truly inspire and motivate young women in our country and beyond, to be the best they can be. Tara Fela-Durotoye is currently the Managing Director and Creative Director of House of TARA International, a business that has trained over 2,000 make-up artistes, most of whom are now major players in Nigeria’s beauty industry through its make-up school and empowered over 1,000 young women in tertiary institutions through its ‘Tara Orekelewa Beauty Representatives Scheme’.
Tara Fela-Durotoye – A veteran in the beauty industry
One of the high points of the event was the documentary presentation on Tara and her achievements so far. The way she told her story was indeed captivating because it was a 15 minutes presentation of her trials, travails and triumph. It was followed by the book launch titled ‘The Tara Durotoye Story’. The book which is in five chapters, tells of Tara’s growth in a peculiar family situation without her mum, amongst her step siblings and raised by two step moms, the second chapter enumerates Tara’s discovery of her love for make-up as well as uncovering the power of it thereof, the third chapter talks about Tara’s passion being turned to business, the fourth chapter tells of her story of her attempt to balance it all and the final chapter paints a picture of the future without neglecting the present.
I cannot forget the way the audience felt when the six selected girls shared a brief about themselves while thanking the organisers for the opportunity given to them. The first was Ayo Agunbiade, a 24 year old graduate of Covenant University “I own Naledi’s, a cloth & accessories design outfit. I am out to build a fashion brand that is culturally rooted but internationally accepted, with the hope of inspiring other young African women” Next was EzealaNkechi Mary, a 24 year old graduate of University of Nsuka “my business, Bare Esentials started in 2001 and it is an NGO aimed at developing and empowering young ladies”.
SobowaleDamilola, a 24 year old graduate of Bowen University “I run a design studio and we are into computer animation, motion graphics, visual effects and so on. I plan to grow the business to be the largest family entertainment conglomerate in Nigeria, Africa and the world.” OmowaleAjose-Adeogun, a 19 year old undergraduate of University of Lagos, “I am a fashion designer and I plan to have my company ‘LoyauteCoutre’ on the racks of top stores around the world” Akinola Abigail Adekemi, a 25 year old graduate from University of Lagos “my company is a fast growing indigenous company that has carved a niche for herself in the cleaning industry by focusing on the cosmetic maintenance of automobiles”.
Akatugba Daphne Eloho, a 22 year old graduate of Political science from the University of Ghana. “my company, SEGI’s is an African Fashion Accessory Label with speciality in making of bags, shoes, belts e.t.c with rich African fabric that are durable.” Filled with gratitude for being the focal person of the maiden Empowering Women series, which also happened to be her birthday, Tara responded “I am indeed delighted at this opportunity and I am grateful for the privilege given.
These young ladies have in turn inspired me and I promise to help mentor them as much as I can because I know they have all it takes to make it in life. In them I see determination to excel and for me, it is a driving force.” Three women were given the opportunity to share their views on Tara and they included AdeolaAzeez, Chairman WIMBIZ, AdesuwaOnyenokwe, Publisher TW magazine and YewandePeregrino, Managing Director, Beyond Faces, who was also trained by Tara.
Unanimously, they applauded Tara’s achievement and dedication to work and grateful for her contribution to womenfolk. It is said that behind every successful man, there is a woman and vice-versa, FelaDurotoye, Manging Director/CEO, Visible Impact and Tara’s husband was indeed proud of who Tara has become and in the presence of all, renewed his commitment to her and grateful to God that she epitomizes the woman spoken about in Proverbs 31.
It was indeed an emotional moment as all applauded him for his show of affection. According to Bamitale “This year, Tara was the focal person, next year, it is going to be another person who will be chosen to mentor another set of girls. We will also be going to different schools and as such reaching out to the girls because we believe that a lot has been embedded in them and nothing should deter them of their glorious future”.