Postgraduate student Nkechikwu Azinge was this month recognised as a Queen’s Young Leader in the inaugural awards in Buckingham Palace. The awards were presented by the Queen of England, Queen Elizabeth II, to 60 exceptional young people from across the Commonwealth, who are taking the lead in their communities and using their skills to transform lives.
Nkechikwu Azinge set up the Sickle Cell Aid Foundation (SCAF) in Nigeria in 2010, to help people with the hereditary blood disorder, Sickle Cell Anaemia. The organisation encourages people to get tested to know their haemoglobin genotype, carries out free genotype tests and has set up Sickle Cell Clubs in schools to inform and educate young people about the condition. So far they have reached over 17, 000 people across the six area councils in Abuja.
It is for this and her various volunteering commitments to improving the lives of people that Nkechikwu was recognized as a Queen's Young Leader. She participated in a Question and Answer session with the Prime Minister, David Cameron, and undertook leadership and mentorship sessions at the University of Cambridge.