Q. What is your full name?
A. Olajide Olayemi Ajibowo
Q. Is there a title you would like to go by? 🙂
A. Well, I’ve been called many names growing up, but the one I love out of them is,”Bowo” which is just a part of my surname- Ajibowo
Q. Ok Bowo, if i may, what things are you currently involved in? Or in other words what do you do?
A. I’m currently the founder and president of RYSE (Redefining Your Self Esteem) which is an initiative set up by the grace of God to elevate the self-esteem of young people through various platforms such as the DOPE (Discovery of Purpose) conference, Say No To Suicide Campaign, WhatsApp public speaking class etc. I’m also the author of “Everybody is Born Pregnant. A book that will make people problem solvers, value makers and God chasers. I’m also a poet and about rounding up my law degree.
Q. That is impressive…very impressive actually. You mentioned you’re rounding off your Law degree? Where and how do you manage your school workload with other activities?
A. Yes I’m in the last lap of my final year in Babcock University. One can be tempted to say it is as a result of will, grittiness, planning and having to read at night to cover up for my daily activities, but the truth is, It’s really God’s mercy and grace. Good as working hard may look. None of it would have been possible without God’s help and motivation.
Q. That’s definitely true. What’s your routine for recreation/relaxation?
A. I’m pretty much an introvert… And introverts love the company of themselves. Any little time I have to myself and nature is blissful to me. I enjoy movies and reading too. I also occasionally attend parties
Q. So Bowo what started it for you this life impacting journey for you? When and where did it all begin?
A. Hmm. It all started when the late Myles Munroe came to my church and preached on maximising your potential. He said everything we see today came out from God. So, before everything we see today it was just a potential in God, until He brought it forth. He went on and on then pointed out that the graveyard is the richest place because there lays firms not established, books not written, things not done. This sermon sparked something in me. It was a defining moment, I got to my bed that night and began to nurse the seed Myles planted in me, and the idea of RYSE came up. Ryse was not initially a group. It was a book. A book I haven’t published yet. But over the years the vision grew and with the help of some of my friends the group was formed.
Q. I can imagine there is 😊. So it’s safe to say then that Dr. Myles was the catalyst, the spark that began this?
A. He is the catalyst! I fondly call him my mentor from the grave. His works transcends time.
Q. oh wow, never heard that before. You`re a man of interesting thoughts Mr. Bowo, like your mentor said there are dreams unfulfilled in the graveyard, how did you start push to avoid this being your reality in the end?
A. I don’t understand your question
Q. Did you draw up plans with anyone? Solicit funds or build a team?
A. Oh yes. When the idea came up, I spoke to a couple of my friends and they spoke to a couple of their friends and like that a group started. One thing I believe is that, once a man has ideas, it attracts, resources, people and it takes you places. So, with the idea, we were able to build a team over the years, and also with the team, we had to strategically plan our objectives and programmes very well because the nature of our vision is very delicate. And in our plan we were able to seek funding both internally and externally for our projects.
Q. Brilliant. So Bowo nothing good comes easy and the rest isn`t really relevant right now, what has been your biggest obstacle and what active steps did you take to or are you taking to overcome it?
A. Funding I must confess… But every time we are faced with money issue, a helper always comes along. However, moves are being made to set up projects that will generate funds for us internally, so we won’t be limited. The vision is truly big.
Q. Hmmm that`s something, how long was your idea just a mind thing before it came to life in practice?
A. Well say less than a month… However the big projects we did took months of planning
Q. Awesome! Who are your target audience? And how do you get across to them?
A. Young people basically. Social media is one of our tools. We have Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts, the handle is @ryse_bu. Also through our programmes, such as the DOPE conference, and our secondary school outreach called “One Child a Million Dreams. Last year we reached out to thousands of young students.
Q. I’d definitely like to attend one of the programs. Anyone happening soon? #
A. The One Child a Million Dreams outreach is happening this year by God’s grace and some new projects too. I will stay in touch to ensure I am a part.
Q. Mr. Amazing Bowo Any sharable long term plans?
A. Hmm, well… There’s a competition coming up and a school tour coming soon.
Q. That sounds Fantastic. I look forward to watching the competition. But this must get tiring at some point, the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak how do you make it through everyday despite the occasional down moments or terrible stress?
A. Passion, purpose, Christ, friends and family.
Q. Wow! I must say I’ve learnt quite a lot from you. My final question would be what has been your watchword or mantra?
A. Oh thank God. The earth is groaning for the manifestation of the sons of God!
Q. Ghen Ghen! I said you were a man of intriguing words you buttressed my thoughts. Thank you so much Bowo. You’ve been very helpful. Real grateful
A. Thank you too. It was a privilege.