The Muhammad Sanusi II Sustainable Development Goals Challenge (MSII SDG Challenge) in partnership with 1 Million Teachers has announced its successful top 25 finalists for Cohort 2 from over 1,700 applications received across Sub-Saharan Africa.


Africa has everything it needs to transform its educational system from within, and with the Muhammad Sanusi II SDG Challenge, teachers get to become true catalysts of change and greatly improve our educational sector. The SDG Challenge involves the training of selected teachers and giving them access to the right resources to develop their ideas and projects including $2000 funding for their individual projects with possible follow-up funding of up to $10,000.


Applications for Cohort 2 of The MSII SDG Challenge officially opened on the 7th of June and closed on the 28th of June with over 1700 applications submitted from across sub-Saharan Africa. After a thorough review process – the highly anticipated top 25 finalists that makeup Cohort 2 of the challenge were selected and onboarded last week.


The aim of the HH MSII SDG Challenge is the provision of high-quality, gender-responsive education to students – particularly girls – in the most deprived regions of the world. This is done by empowering and supporting teacher-changemakers with the skills, networks and resources they need to lead innovative and impactful community-based projects which cut across various communities in Africa.



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The 25 finalists for this year’s challenge were chosen based on the originality of their ideas and the impact they would have on the quality of education in their communities. After a rigorous and thorough review of the entries based on the criteria of the Challenge, the following are the top 25 finalists for Cohort 2:


Aisha Yakubu (Sustainabe Teaching for Education Progression), Alero Thompson (Tech Fingers), Aliyu Salisu Ibrahim (Ungoggo Participatory Development Initiative), Blessing Omenogo Itawansa (Special Needs Children), David Adeoye (Psychosocial support), Emmanuel Kilaso (Environmental Change), Farisai Marovatsanga (Resina Literacy and Inclusion Programme), Gloria Ifeyinwa Ayogu (Crestbridge Press Club), Hansaawu Bukari (The Reading Clinic), Ifeoma Obiorah (Improve Reading and Literacy Skills), Issah Abubakari (Girls in Innovative Science and Technology), Joseph Ogbonnaya (The ‘project sportive’ initiative), Josephine Odhiambo (Early Risers of Hope), Maryam Funmilayo (Girls of Substance), McDonald Nguluwe (Green Sound Project), Mufida Bashir Isyaku (Displaced and Refugee Children), Olajumoke Adebisi (Pad Innovation Project ), Olasunkanmi Opeifa (Phenomenon Literacy Project ), Ololade Ogunnubi (IDP Camp Children Education), Oluwabunmi Anani (Quality Education for All), Ousman Faal (, Patricia Uma (IHY Learners Handbook), Uwezo Ramazani (Accelerated Learning in Displacement project ), Wallace Maguma Tort (Education Through Agriculture) and Zenaida Odimegwu (The Eduvate Initiative).

Whilst congratulating the 25 finalists at the virtual welcome event, His Highness, Khalifa Muhammad Sanusi II (UN SDG Advocate & 14th Emir of Kano); re-emphasized the reasons why he is passionate about education, particularly the girl child and his vision for education in Sub-Saharan Africa. He shared his dream which is to help develop Africa’s future leaders, and ensure every child has the opportunity to reach his or her potential, to address SDG 4 (inclusive, equitable, high-quality education) & SDG 5 (gender equity – by advancing economic empowerment for women and girls) and to empower thousands of teachers to bring to life their own vision for the future of education in Africa.


On the role of teachers in achieving SDG 4 and 5, His Highness said, “Teachers are a powerful force – Each teacher will directly impact a minimum of 3000 students in their career, and many more students indirectly. There cannot be quality education if the teachers do not have the right competence to impact students positively. Only by empowering teachers can we implement solutions that truly transform our education systems.”


Also present at the welcome event to encourage the finalists were, Dr. Mansur Muhtar (Vice-Chairman of the MSIISDG Board), Mrs. Bola Adesola (Trustee), Dr. Andrew S. Nevin (Trustee), Hakeem Subair (Trustee and CEO, 1MillionTeachers), Shari Hughson (Member, Advisory Board), Jane Chin (Member, Advisory Board), Seth Warren (CEO, MSIISDG) and Olasubomi Sofowora (Director Engagement, MSIISDG).