ICON implements rural community development programs, interventions on girls’ right to quality education, women empowerment projects, youth development, and art and cultural initiatives, spanning across the six geopolitical regions of Nigeria (South West, South East, South-South, North Central, North East, and North West).
Inyene Adiaha Nsa (also popularly known as Kate Ekanem) grew up in a rural community with multiple forms of inequalities. In her community, victims of rape were constantly publicly shamed and stigmatized. Young girls were motivated into early marriages to escape intergenerational poverty. Emerging writers were barely offered the same opportunity as the established ones. Teenage girls were pressured to wed older men for financial benefits, and women were automatically situated in the backseat of decision-making processes.
In 2012, Inyene started Kate Tales Foundation, a youth volunteer-motivated movement promoting girls’ rights to education, women’s economic empowerment, and young writers’ development. In 2020, she released a statement to change the name of the foundation to Inspire Community Network Foundation.
“ When Kate Tales Foundation started, it was all about me and the stories that motivated the action, hence the name. What I intended to be a small approach to solving my personal struggles, transcended into a youth leadership mobilization. It has transcended me; hence it doesn’t feel right to still call it Kate Tales Foundation. Kate Tales Foundation birthed a vast inspired community network of volunteers. It should be called Inspire Community Network Foundation.”
We believe in solutions created by those impacted by the problem. Inspire Community Network Foundation was established on the principle that no one knows where the shoe pinches, but he who wears it. For that reason, In order to develop sustainable evidence-based local community interventions that directly address root causes and sustain local communities, local youth have to be empowered to take action for local communities.
One empowered youth equates to one empowered community. In a world of constantly ongoing and emerging daily local and global crises, no community should be caught unaware. We work to improve youth civic participation so that they can swiftly identify and respond to immediate arising community pressing issues.
“ The Inspire Community Network is a diverse chain of change-makers driven by a collective desire to challenge the obstacles that oppresses their individual communties, across Nigeria. This network is driven by a relatability passion to dismantle systematic, cultural, and traditionally designed community issues. Like one drop of water—forming an ocean. ICON is One volunteer, one community, multiple beneficiaries.”
Inyene Adiaha Nsa.
Founder: Inspire Community Network Foundation.
AWARDS AND RECOGNITIONS
Internet Society25Under25, USA, 2017.
Dealhack Community Volunteer Scholarship Award winner, Canada.
Grubstreet Muse Literary Citizen Writer Award winner, USA.
Queen Elizabeth Young Leader most Recommended Runner-up, UK.
Deutsche Welle Global Media forum Award recipient, Germany, 2016.
Carrington Youth Fellow of the US Consulate, 2016, Nigeria.
UN Empower Women Champion for Change, 2016, USA.
African Union G(ir)20 Ambassador, Turkey, 2015.
World Youth Forum, 2018.
Western Union GS Award, USA, 2020.
Royal Commonwealth Associate Fellow
Ship the Start-up Ambassador, Finland, 2017.
Dalai Lama Fellowship, USA, 2019.
African Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF) Award- Empowerment Category, South Africa, 2018.
Muhlenberg Goodwill Award, USA, 2021.
Sojourner Truth Award, USA, 2021.
James Schneider Award For Social Justice, USA, 2021.