The OOI Future Fund is a sub-programme of the WeFundUs Initiative, and WeFundUs is largely geared at fundraising for social and charitable worthy causes that meet our support criteria along our core focus areas of Technology, Education, Art, Charitable Trust and Health.
The OOI Future Fund is an education focused fund that seeks to contribute to reducing the number of out-of-school children in Nigeria (as an initial focal area for coverage). As it currently stands, “even though primary education is officially free and compulsory, about 10.5 million of the country’s children aged 5-14 years are not in school. Only 61 percent of 6-11 year-olds regularly attend primary school and only 35.6 percent of children aged 36-59 months receive early childhood education. In the north of the country, the picture is even bleaker, with a net attendance rate of 53 percent. Getting out-of-school children back into education poses a massive challenge.” - culled from https://www.unicef.org/nigeria/education. The idea is that from the pool of funds generated, we would, on an annual basis, provide funding/scholarships to out-of-school children for them to get qualitative education. And when they start off in the primary schools, October Orange Initiative, through OFF, will continue to support their education all the way to the university.
But when you move towards the North, “gender, like geography and poverty, is an important factor in the pattern of educational marginalization. States in the north-east and north-west have female primary net attendance rates of 47.7 percent and 47.3 percent, respectively, meaning that more than half of the girls are not in school.” - culled from https://www.unicef.org/nigeria/education. Thus, this will influence some of our operational factors when we expand the program outside Lagos (which is our starting point) and we shall work towards ensuring that the education of the girl-child becomes a priority for us.
What we intend to do with this fund also contributes to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 4, which would eventually lead to the meeting the ideals of goal 10. Click on the images below to read about the respective Goals and the UN’s vision with the SDGs.
The immediate goal of the OOI Future Fund (‘OFF’) is to raise the sum of Fifty Million Naira (N50,000,000.00) before September 2020 to help kick start sponsoring out of school children (i.e. children from impoverished communities) in getting an education that begins to prepare them in making meaningful contributions in the future. The idea is not to spend all of the money raised in sending children to school in 2020, however, we would undertake, at least twenty-five (25) children into primary schools and the rest of the funds will be managed by a professional investment advisor. If we are able to raise more funds in view of our initial target, we would be able to take on many more children on an annual basis and have more funds for investment purposes, which further guarantees our capacity to sustain the educational sponsorship of children and contribute to reducing the number of out-of-school children in our country and possibly beyond.
Besides wanting to make a difference in education by reducing the number of out-of-school children, contributing to enhancing teaching quality standards and creating encouraging learning environments, part of our focus in setting up the OOI Future Fund is hinged on the principles of Sustainability of Funding; Transparency; Corporate Governance and Trust in effecting change.
The areas which the fund seeks to address by providing intervention includes
One of the main objectives of the OOI Future Fund is to create a support system that provides quality education for out-of-school children; children from impoverished communities and children whom, generally, have found it difficult to be in school for any one of a thousand reasons. Our focus is not just on the number of children we are able to help, but more importantly, ensuring that our enrollees are exposed to quality education that would significantly impact the future of these children.
Another key component of quality education is the teaching faculty and this is an area that requires significant attention. Without a doubt, our teachers influence the children in how they learn and lessons they pick up about life so why not ensure they are properly prepared and tooled to handle the responsibilities of shaping the future of our children. With regards to various Teachers Quality Programmes (TQPs), the fund shall focus on teachers in community based schools; schools that require support in upgrading the teaching faculty. The fund shall evaluate partnering with existing institutions that will offer focused support to teachers.
Our support for learning centres (i.e. community based schools; libraries; and educationally focused labs) will focus on creating ‘environments’ that encourages learning for both children and teachers. The focus of support for learning centres will be determined on a case-by-case basis, as such activities could cover the rehabilitation of existing schools/structures; provision of furniture; educational tools; building of new infrastructure; adoption of schools; etc. A significant part of our focus shall leverage the use of technology in enhancing the experiences (learning & teaching) of students and teachers. In addition, there will be efforts made at the adoption of tech and green-based initiatives.
In as much as we are able to participate in providing support systems for children, teachers and learning centres, we think it is just as important to continue to spread the word why education is very important and should be approached in such a manner that brings about significant changes to the outcomes of educational interventions and of education itself. The cornerstones of our advocacy shall rest upon sustainability of funding; private sector participation; capacity building; and radically rethinking education in itself.
Our initial take on this project is a different perspective on the sponsor-a-child initiative, wherein on a regular basis, different organisations seek support to not just put children into schools but also support their annual educational costs for the duration of their stay in school (whether at primary, secondary or university levels). Rather than seek one-off donations on a continuous basis, we are setting up a platform/vehicle where donations received will be invested in various instruments to grow the capital and generate interest. Thus, over the long term, this model becomes self sustaining as it greatly reduces the number of times October Orange Initiative will have to approach donors. This helps us avoid “donor apathy”.
We see two crucial benefits of this arrangement:
The proposed structure is such that (on the one hand) whilst October Orange Initiative focuses on operational management, personnel administration, campaign and fundraising, on the other hand, the assigned trustee/fund manager/investment advisor is appointed to manage the donor funds from inception and coordinate the administration, release of funds for the intended purposes. This structure makes room for accountability and it is an approach October Orange Initiative will be considering for all of its activities/projects going forward.
As the fund continues to grow, October Orange Initiative and the investment manager shall then consider the transition of the managed fund into a full trustee status. This is to further entrench management principles and corporate governance oversight in order to ensure the sustainability of the fund into the foreseeable future.
We shall constantly be evaluating different funding sources in order to sustain and grow the OOI Future Fund. Potential sources of funding include:
We shall constantly seek out organisations (both local & international) that are looking to support educational causes and get them to support the fund. This is so that October Orange Initiative is able to significantly grow the fund but also leverage the network to deepen/expand its scope/coverage.
To help us optimally manage funds received in respect of the OOI Future Fund, October Orange Initiative is partnering with Cordros Asset Management Limited to deliver on investment services that will help grow donated funds into a sustainable means of sponsoring educational causes into the foreseeable future.
Cordros Asset Management Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Cordros Capital Limited licensed by the Securities & Exchange Commission as a fund/portfolio management company. Cordros Asset Management is committed to creating value for its diverse clientele base and ensuring their investment objectives are achieved within the agreed parameters. Cordros Asset Management Limited understands the portfolio structure that should be adopted and the role of the asset manager in achieving the investor’s overall investment objectives.
At Cordros Asset Management, clientele satisfaction is at the heart of all they do and they ensure client’s portfolios are managed using a robust and well-defined risk management strategy. Cordros Asset Management’s product offerings include Mutual funds, Portfolio Management, Liquidity Management and Structured products with services in wealth management and alternative investments. Since incorporation, the company has demonstrated competence in handling our clients’ needs with our range of products and services. Their footprint covers the Sub-Saharan African markets with an experienced investment team that works tirelessly to seek competitive returns for clients.
As a show of their commitment and support to the OOI Future Fund, Cordros Asset Management, on an annual basis, is pledging 0.25% of their annual income as a donation to assist us in pursuing our goals of setting up the fund.
Click here to read more about them on their website
In order to ensure that our beneficiaries focus on getting their education and are not discouraged by other extenuating factors, such as the inability of the parents/guardians to pay for healthcare, we have partnered with Reliance HMO as our health insurance partner, whom would provide medicare coverage to our beneficiaries, for as long as they remain on our programme. This is to guarantee a decent level of attendance in school without having to be downed by an ailment as an excuse not to finish through on school and school work.
Reliance HMO is a health insurance company that uses software, data science and telemedicine to make health insurance delightful, affordable and easier to access. Health Insurance is a pain when you try to buy insurance for yourself, your family or your business in Nigeria, getting started is hard. You have to fill long forms and wait a long while before you can access care. Customer service doesn’t exist and hospitals give you poor service. Reliance HMO decided to fix that with technology by creating a health insurer that actually has your interests at heart. To achieve this, technology and data science are used to make everything easier from paying for your health insurance to accessing care and make it delightful with awesome service. You Can Rely On Us is a promise that Reliance HMO makes to its customer to which they can be held responsible. Most health insurers have long fancy vision and mission statements that at the end of the day are just words that don’t yield anything. They don’t do that, instead Reliance HMO gives you a single brand promise that we will do anything and everything it takes to make sure you have a great experience with your health insurance.
You can read more about them by clicking here to view their website.
Access Bank shall act as a collection bank and fund custodian pending transfers to the fund manager. Due to their reach/branch network and the relationship we have been able to establish with the bank, they have been selected to help with the collection and tracking of donations into the dedicated OOI Future Fund account. This ensures a greater degree of transparency and ensures for anyone willing to support this project by making a donation is able to easily do so whether online or offline.
Access Bank Plc. is a leading full-service commercial Bank operating through a network of more than 600 branches and service outlets, spanning three continents, 12 countries and 31 million customers. The Bank employs 28,000 people in its operations in Nigeria and has subsidiaries in Sub-Saharan Africa and the United Kingdom (with a branch in Dubai, UAE) and representative offices in China, Lebanon and India.
Listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange since 1998, Access Bank is a diversified financial institution which combines a strong retail customer franchise and digital platform with deep corporate banking expertise and proven risk management and capital management capabilities. The Bank serves its various markets through four business segments: Retail, Business, Commercial and Corporate. The Bank has over 900,000 shareholders (including several Nigerian and International Institutional Investors) and has enjoyed what is arguably Africa's most successful banking growth trajectory in the last twelve years. Following its merger with Diamond Bank in March 2019, Access Bank became one of Africa’s largest retail banks by retail customer base.
You can read more about them and view their products and services by clicking here
Lawracles have been appointed legal advisers to the fund and would help ensure that the operations of the OOI Future Fund meet all extant legal requirements. Lawracles will also play a vital role in determining matters such as beneficiary selection and management in order to ensure there is a fair and objective process in admitting beneficiaries onto the programme.
Lawracles is a full service Commercial, Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution firm. Lawracles (which means The Oracles of Law) is one of the fastest growing firms in Nigeria with an office in Lagos. The firm merges local legal expertise and presence coupled with political and industry wide connections with deep appreciation of global demands and standards. Practice areas include: Corporate Commercial, Cyber Law, Due Diligence, Copyright Law, Dispute Resolution, Real Property Management, Insolvency Practice and Recovery, Legacy and Succession.
You can read more about them by clicking here to view their website.
As part of the overall framework to ensure the integrity of the fund, we have brought onboard, KLT Partners, as auditors to the fund. The main mandate for the auditors is to ensure that there are policies and processes in place to safeguard donor funds, in order to ensure that all funds received on behalf of the OOI Future Fund is judiciously used for the overriding objective.
The firm was established to provide accounting, auditing, tax management and other allied services at the highest level of professionalism to small, medium and large scale business organizations operating in the public and private sector of the Nigerian economy. The experience of the partners and employees covers governmental and non-governmental operations. And service/operational focus is on Generally Accepted Accounting Principles & International Financial Reporting Standard, covering, SAS: Nigerian Accounting Standard Board – NASB; SSAP: Statements of Standards Accounting Practice – UK; FASB: Financial Accounting Standards Board – USA; IFRS: International Financial Reporting Standards.
Account Name: OOI Future Fund
Account Number: 1237640858
Bank: Access Bank.
You can also issue a cheque in favour of “OOI Future Fund” and deposit the same at any Access Bank branch. The account number is 1237640858.
The OOI Future Fund started out as an idea and has since metamorphosed into a fully managed fund, with the support of a professional fund manager (i.e. Cordros Asset Management). As the fund continues to grow and expand its scope of coverage, we shall evaluate the transition into a full trust and this will be dependent on a few factors such as growth of the fund in terms of value; donors contributions; market conditions; legal & investment advice; ability to signing on funding partners; etc. This consideration is aimed at entrenching a more suitable framework for longevity, corporate governance and the people’s trust.