How we embarked on a journey to lift more creative women out of poverty and build bridges for a more culturally united society.
How it all started
A young bride to-be was at the brink of a nervous breakdown few days to her wedding, as the perfect wedding gown she purchased some months back now hangs loosely on her body, as she had lost a lot of weight!
Her Best friend and Chief Bridesmaid suggested taking it to a highly rated Nigerian designers shop, in the city of Lagos, for adjustments. As expected she was asked to make unnecessarily high deposit for express service and was asked to come pick up on the eve of her wedding. Which was pretty risky, but she had very little choice.
On the agreed date, the anxious bride got to the exquisite store only to find her beautiful gown untouched, at the exact same spot she left it. The staff tried to cover up with flimsy excuses that it will be ready in no time. Alas! The gown was ready six hours later as an unfortunate mess, it was way too tight; the alteration was tacky, unprofessionally and hurriedly done, and the finishing horrendous. The staff even had the nerve to ask for the remaining 30% balance payment.
The Bride- to-be, stormed out of the shop in a teary confusion her perfect gown had been completely ruined, plus, it was dark already! After several hours of search, she and her friend were directed to a meager looking, tacky little tailoring corner shop; with lit candles as it’s only source of lighting. The bride walked into the shop explained her dilemma and in less than two hours, the lowly highly skilled designer named Ada, restored the gown! In fact, she did an impeccable job! She even restored the initial errors with beautiful makeshift designs; regardless of her 3 toddlers consistent demands for her attention, apparently, they all lived in the little shop.
Just as you guessed, the marriage ceremony was beautiful, and the newlywed wife decided to stop over at Ada’s little workplace only to discover from her neighbours that she had been battling with a terminal disease, she took ill briefly some weeks back and couldn’t pay her daily rent, hence she was sent packing. No one knows her whereabouts. The bride was indeed heartbroken and depressed. She really wished she had taken an action to help her earlier.
That bride above is our founder Adeola Ogunkolade. No she didn’t find ‘Ada’, after several determined search but she made a resolved to help lift more creative women out of poverty through AFDEC and build bridges for a more culturally united society.
The results of AFDEC’s first baseline survey in 2015 showed that there is still so many ‘Ada’s in Nigeria, hence our remarkable journey so far.