How do you go from being a penniless student in a foreign country to becoming the mother of four of the most successful creatives working in Great Britain today?
Part historical, part political but most of all hugely inspirational, Endless Fortune tells the life story of Ify Adenuga: a fighter, a thinker, a feminist and a parent. During the punishing civil war of the mid 60s, Ify’s family uprooted from Lagos, the country’s capital, to her parent’s original state in eastern Nigeria. In 1980, she exchanged the still recovering war-torn nation for the strange streets of London. There, Ify had to start a new life as a working-class immigrant and student in an environment far removed from her own in a city brimming with hostility. A year later, she met her husband Joseph Senior Adenuga, a Yoruba man, at a bingo hall in east London where they were both working migrants. After the birth of their children, the couple returned to education before setting up their own businesses. In the tough working-class area of Tottenham, they raised their four children and encouraged them to explore their artistic instincts, narrowly avoiding a violent situation that threatened to tear the family apart…
As the first book of its kind from the mother of successful British creatives to examine the experience of the African diaspora and the complications around immigration from a personal perspective, Endless Fortune is a timely addition to the ongoing conversation around migration politics and immigration in the UK. With Ify Adenuga at the very heart of the story, it explores the chasm between Lagos and London and how to not only survive but thrive in a new culture and country. Ify is an imaginative, captivating narrator who carries the reader through the highs & lows of the life of an immigrant, a parent and, ultimately, a survivor.
On the inspiration behind this memoir, Ify states “My life’s journey to date has been a struggle to assert my own definitions of freedom and happiness whilst also living life through my cultural and traditional lens as a Black African Christian woman migrant in the UK… With this book, I have two objectives: First, is to utilize an opportunity I missed with my parents by informing my children and subsequent grandchildren about my life growing up & how different it is to theirs, and second, is to recognise and appreciate all diasporas, regardless of where they call home. It is important to me that migrants understand that survival and success are attainable.”
The formidably impressive Ifeomagwu “Ify” Adenuga is married to Joseph Senior Adenuga and mother of Joseph Junior (Skepta), Jamie (JME), Julie and Jason Adenuga. After moving to London from Lagos in 1980, she went on to receive a BA (Hons) in Education & Film studies. Ify has not only raised her own family but continues to work with organisations across the UK and Nigeria to guide and support young people and help them lead independent lives in safe communities. In 2016, she received recognition as an ICON at C. Hub magazine’s prestigious Creativity and Arts Awards which recognises excellence in creativity, leadership and entrepreneurship.