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LEAP Africa in partnership with Union Bank has announced the call for applications for the 2020/ 2021 cohort of the Social Innovators Programme (SIP), a one-year fellowship for young Nigerian changemakers between 18-35 years.

This year, the fellowship powered by LEAP Africa has been opened to receive applications from Anglophone African countries (Nigeria, The Gambia, Sierra Leon, Liberia and Ghana, Anglo-Cameroon).

The Fellowship seeks to attract young Nigerians with innovative ideas capable of transforming local communities on different scales with high socio-economic impact and in diverse focus areas such as Youth empowerment, Law, Human Rights, Health, Environment, Education and Agriculture, Science and Technology, among others.  


  • Young women and men between 18 and 35 years, whose ideas and initiatives offer effective solutions to challenges in local communities across Nigeria, The Gambia, Sierra Leon, Liberia and Ghana.
  • Applicants must be Initiators/ Co-founders of a socially focused venture/enterprise/ Foundation, located in Nigeria, The Gambia, Sierra Leon, Liberia and Ghana.
  • Applicants must have been involved in operating their ventures/ enterprise beyond 12 months prior to the time of this application.
  • Applicants must be available to participate in the Fellowship activities including implementation of appropriate systems to sustain their innovation over the course of the fellowship year.

Following a shortlisting process, 25 candidates will be selected into the programme.These shortlisted participants will be inducted into the Fellowship at the 2020 SIP Awards, scheduled for October virtually.

The SIP is a platform to equip, support and showcase social innovators and entrepreneurs, enabling them to build and sustain their solutions and enterprises towards national and system-level change. They will be entitled to immense benefits including access to mentorship, funding, and other resources including access to globally valuable networks and partnerships.

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  • Access to an established faculty and curriculum to equip you to build effective system and sustainable structures in your enterprise.
  • Access to a support ecosystem of professionals as mentors, advisory services, skills and other resources towards enterprise growth.
  • Access to impact investment opportunities and funding partnerships from local and international partners.
  • Opportunity to build valuable networks and partnerships to amplify your enterprise credibility both locally and internationally.
  • A chance to win NGN 1,000,000 (or its USD equivalent) as sustainability grant award from Union Bank at the end of the fellowship year.


  • Prospective Fellows can apply through the link here
  • The application portal is open until August 31st, 2020.

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