There is a date on the Gregorian that is always anticipated by young lovers with both apprehension and sanguinity: February 14th, otherwise known as Valentine’s Day. With different opinions regarding the history and true nature of the date, the celebration of love is perhaps the only denominator across the globe. For the year 2020, Engineer Funmilayo Waheed has taken a most unconventional approach to taking the edge off for many a young man and lady, having them hang out with her – rather than participate in the mooning ambiance that characterises the day.
Unknown to some, the Funmi Ayinde Humanity Foundation (FHF) is an iconic outfit that caters to the needs and aspirations – especially with regards to formal education, self-development and reliance – of countless individuals. Founded by Engineer Funmilayo Waheed, the Foundation has crossed numerous thresholds – sometimes literally – in its campaign to assist, empower and celebrate.
In December of 2019, FHF hosted over 3,000 widows and single mothers in Ogun State, doling out such basic necessities (such as food stuff), means of livelihood (such as grinding machines), and cash approximated to be in the corridors of hundreds of millions of Naira. That event alone has long before been one, that countless widows have looked forward to, with more than 10,000 estimated to have benefitted from it.
Thus, it does not come with much surprise that Engr. Funmilayo Waheed is hosting over 500 undergraduates, all of whom are beneficiaries of her scholarship ventures over the years. On that rosy day, the characteristic heart-skipping might very well dominate the early ambiance of the event, as many of these students will be seeing their benefactor face to face for the first time.
The event has been aptly themed Charting Your own Course and Destiny, and promises to invigorate, motivate and invest the fortunate students on overcoming challenges of school life, and life in general.
Engr. Funmilayo Waheed is not new to these challenges herself. Although an academic and a Fellow of Nigeria Institute of Mechanical Engineers now, it is hard to believe that she had enough money troubles to force her out of medical School at 400 level – later to graduate from Engineering. Raised by a single mother, the golden heart has now made it her dream to force out such obstacles from the lives of every single mother, widow and indigent student that is within reach.