In 2015, a group of well-meaning Nigerians with diverse backgrounds and first-hand experience in caring for their elderly both informally and formally in a resource-limited environment as ours, got together to chart a course on how to create value in assisting themselves and other informal care givers also caring for their own elderly folks. They see the need to be a voice for the elderly, in order to bring to light their plight to every necessary stakeholder, and also help to enlighten them on how to access various much-needed information, assistive products and essential services.
LEMON & FEATHERS is a social enterprise that was established in 2016, essentially to promote the care of the Nigerian ageing population, owing to the scarce resources and facilities available for their elderly. As strong advocates for the best interest of Senior Citizens in Nigeria, we are creating more awareness about the plights of this demography with the intention to incorporate them into most aspects of our communal life, especially in view of their anticipated declining overall health and strength required to cope adequately with simple daily chores and activities. We aim to achieve this feat by sensitizing and reminding every stakeholder about their plight, especially the need to take necessary action. Lemon & Feathers also sets out to prompt Nigeria to take a lead on the continent in addressing this population of people, in maintaining their care, dignity and their human rights while dealing with their vulnerabilities, neglect, abuse, violence suffered and all their attendant and related issues in order to enhance their quality of life.
Ageing, which simply means to grow older naturally may come with serious physical, psychological and social challenges. Hence, public enlightenment of the ageing population in preparation for old age and a more fulfilling life in their twilight years is of utmost importance to our organization. Providing appropriate consultations and creating a platform for discussions on complex real life and end of life issues, such as giving power of attorney, making a will, estate planning, pension plans, accessibility to competent resource persons but to mention a few. This will go a long way in pointing persons who are in need of these services to the right direction.
We are poised at Lemon & Feathers to promote and offer diverse support services to Seniors in Nigeria which will also include outsourcing, concierge services, health & social escort services, professional care services, logistics, home retrofits & adaptations along with lifestyle enhancing products & services, training, events, etc. We also plan to adopt and support indigent community facilities.
Our plans are already under way for the design and construction of the first of its kind Proposed Care Home Facility, affordable and accessible to the average Nigerian. It is set out to provide care at various levels for Day Care, Respite/Short Term and Long Term Care. Other facilities include a Recreation Centre for Social Network and a Resource Centre with diverse lifestyle resources, products and services meant to assist the ageing population and their care givers with information on quality living and a more adaptable lifestyle as required.
Dr. (Mrs.) Idowu Osibodu
Arc. (Mrs.) Yinka Williams
Dr. (Mrs.) Taiwo Oduguwa
Growing up in a large family and watching those who are blessed to live to old age created a passion of understanding and caring for the elderly in Idowu.
A Dental Surgeon based in the UK, Idowu graduated from University of Ife- now Obafemi Awolowo University. After graduation she worked in General Hospitals Lagos Island and Ikeja, and in private practice before proceeding to the UK. She is a Fellow of Royal College of Surgeons and Physicians (Glasgow) and Fellow of Faculty of Dental Surgery of Royal College of Surgeons Ireland.
Idowu worked in various hospitals in the UK before deciding to go into private practice.
She is involved in organising holiday scheme for the elderly within the community she lives in Hertfordshire.
Yinka’s passion for “Humane Architecture” was ignited while carrying out some research work during the final year of her studying Architecture at the Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria. This has become an integral part of her paying special attention to the infinite details in designing to enhance comfort and a functional lifestyle all through her career. Yinka is the Managing Director of Fola Alade Associates, established by her Dad, Chief (Arc.) Fola Alade, OFR since 1980. She is also a Director at Savant Integrated Concepts Nigeria Limited, an indigenous Project Management firm.
Yinka first learnt about the obscure realities and the elusive plights of the elderly in Nigeria while she served on the 60+ Network (an outreach to the seniors at her local church) in 2008 from where she rapidly learnt the ropes in less than two years, little did she know how this was to prepare her for her key role as a primary caregiver today. She also engages in other voluntary works with Bethesda Schools, an NGO initiative of the church, and serves on the Building Committee of the church umbrella organization, Freedom Foundation. She recently commenced works with ALEPH Education and Empowerment Foundation LTE/GTE, a not for profit organization whose aim is to create an inclusive society for persons with or without disabilities in Nigeria, and also Patrick’s Speech & Learning Languages Centre in Ikeja, Lagos. She has served as the Chairman of the Building Committee of the Nigerian Girl Guides Association for the past nine years.
Yinka attends conferences and exhibitions that enhance her capacity to design for those living visible and non-visible impairments. She regularly attends the IMDDA, an International Masterclass on Dementia Care Design and Ageing at the Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC) at the University of Stirling, Scotland. DSDC is an International Centre of knowledge and the expertise dedicated to improving the lives of people with dementia and ageing. Yinka is dedicated to improving the quality of life of the ageing population with the hope of getting Nigeria to become one of the Age-friendly counties in Africa, as is in most developed countries. She focuses on adapting aspects of their homes and designing for them to live in very functional, safe and comfortable spaces for a better quality of life.
Dr Taiwo Oduguwa is a Consultant Psychiatrist with the Federal Neuro-Psychaiatric Hospital Yaba (FNPHY) Lagos. Her area of sub-specialization is in old age (Geriatric) Psychiatry.
Her interest in Psychiatry developed about 20 years ago during her compulsory 1 year National Youth Service Corp at the Federal Neuro Psychiatric Hospital, Aro in Abeokuta.
She then proceeded for her Residency programme at FNPHY, and has since remained a Consultant Psychiatrist in this great institution.
She has attended various training programs both at home and abroad, and has chaired different hospital Adhoc committees. She has an interest in research and presently heads the Schizophrenia Research group of the hospital which is involved in international collaborative studies with the University of Maryland Baltimore and Solent University, United Kingdom.
She is an alumnus of Queen’s College, Yaba, Lagos University of Ilorin, Kwara State and the prestigious Lagos Business School.
She enjoys traveling and meeting great minds. She’s most passionate about service to God and humanity. She is happily married with children.
Mrs. Julie Okoigun
Arc. (Mrs.) Olabisi Olumide
Dr Memuna Esan, mbbs, mhp, fmcph
Julie Okoigun is a businesswoman and a loving mother of three, with diverse interests across different sectors (Oil & Gas, Real Estate and Fashion Industries) of the economy. An alumnus of Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, she holds BSc in Sociology.
She is a director at ARCO Group Plc, a wholly indigenous company with over 35 years’ experience in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry. She was instrumental in the strategic transformation of the organization into a Group. Her role at ARCO includes but is not limited to Strategic Planning, New Business Development and Corporate Social Responsibility.
Beyond ARCO Group Plc., Julie is engaged in advising and mentoring young professionals involved in start-up businesses with high potential for contributing positively the economy. Also, she has approximately over a decade of experience in the real estate business particularly in the area of home-ownership schemes. She has successfully managed and delivered turnkey real estate projects in different states across Nigeria.
Her other interests include, coaching young people, promoting start-ups and small medium enterprises within the fashion industry. Julie Okoigun is an avid interior design enthusiast. Also, a certified Image and Etiquette Consultant.
A homemaker and businesswoman, Julie is a ‘mum-treprenuer’ who enjoys spending her time nurturing her family and travelling across the world.
Bisi grew up in a home where there were often three generations of her multicultural extended family present at some time or another.
Bisi studied Architecture which was an ideal course of study for a determined and opinionated girl. She completed her formal studies at the University of Lagos and later received her professional qualification as a registered architect over 20 years ago while she worked with a thriving architectural practice. Bisi later worked in the Housing ministry of the Lagos State public service and set off on another journey of learning to the academia where she has been an active lecturer at the Architecture department of her alma mater for many years now as well as continuing in professional consultancy. Her research interests lie in preservation of heritage buildings, low-income housing and the adaptable home.
This last aspect became personal when the value of a preemptive remodeling of her parents home to accommodate their reduced physical mobility was only fully appreciated after extensive surgery made the use of the stairs impossible for them.
Being the secondary post-surgery carer for her parents and the primary worrier, BIsi has seen how the relationship between carers, the medical team, the patient and support personnel is crucial to the long term rehabilitation including maintaining a semblance of independence and maintenance of functioning mental health of the elderly. Having frequent interactions with dedicated geriatric medical professionals during both parents hospitalisation heightened her belief in the need for awareness of the complexities associated with the ageing process.
Bisi has been involved with the Spinal Cord Injuries Association of Nigeria (SCIAN), is an active member of Legacy95 a pro-heritage conservation NGO and has meaningfully participated in the politics of her professional institute - the Nigerian Institute of Architects at the state and national levels for eight years. She counts as her greatest privilege the opportunity - through her teaching - to positively affect the minds of the next generation who will take charge of and change this country to a nation.
Experiencing the realities of aging both on a personal and professional level created a passion in me for the Aged and the process of Aging. This was further bolstered by the observation that various medical conditions associated with Aging are now on the rise, becoming PUBLIC HEALTH and EPIDEMIOLOGY burdens, and that in the Nigerian environment where the various services and program that can assist and alleviate the associated conditions are lacking and limited.
Memuna is a Public Health Physician who graduated from the University of Jos, Memuna has worked both in the private and public medical sectors. She is a Fellow of the National Postgraduate College of Nigeria.
Mrs. Bisi Soji-Oyawoye
Bisi is an Executive Director of the John Maxwell Team.
She has about 30 years experience in the Nigerian Oil & Gas industry where she served in diverse roles of increasing responsibility including being the 1st Integrated Travel Center Coordinator, the 1st Female Aviation Supervisor in Escravos, the 1st and the 1st Female Logistics Superintendent in the Nigeria/Mid Africa Business Unit of the company. She recently retired but is not tired. She is refired to inspire people by working with them to maximise their potential and be the best version of themselves. She understands that People are our greatest assets and we must genuinely invest in them for a Return On Investment (ROI) – that’s the Bottomline! She works with them to Raise Awareness of their Potential, Move them from Confusion to Clarity and Encourage them to Live their lives in 3D! - DISCover their Purpose, Develop their Potential, and Deliver Effectively with Passion!
Bisi currently serves as a member of the President’s Advisory Council (PAC), one of the highest bodies of the John Maxwell Team. Furthermore, she was a member of the 2018 WIMCAP Committee of WIMBIZ and is currently a Mentor on the WIMBIZ Mentoring Program. She is the CEO of Be Causative Ltd., a consulting outfit that focuses on Transformational Leadership Development, Personal Growth and Mindset Reset.
Bisi is committed to impacting the world by making a difference, with people who want to make a difference, doing something that makes a difference, at a time that makes a difference.