One of the Non-Governmental Organizations, NGO’s that have been contributing and impacting on the society is Peat Phillips Foundation, PPF,through education and foundational processes of children in their academic uplifting.
Peat Philips Foundation is the organizer of the Spelling Bee in Nigeria, and the current edition is the 8th season of the annual educational competition being organized by the Foundation.
They were Nigeria’s representatives at this year’s Intercontinental Spelling Bee competition which held on September 24, 2021 in Dubai, UAE. The adolescents, ranging from 12 to 15 years were qualified from local competitions from schools across all regions of the country in the Spelling Bee Contest in Nigeria.
The 8th season is unique in the sense that Peat Philips Foundation currently and just recently has the franchise for the Intercontinental Spelling Bee and winners of the national competition in Nigeria will be featuring in the 2021 Intercontinental Spelling Bee in Dubai.
The Nigerian qualifiers were currently in Dubai, after rigorous camping and training at the DeMeros Hotels, towards their preparation for the stiff competition in Dubai.
The Head of the Organizers, Akin Olu-Phillips, congratulated all the competitors in respect of their anticipated victories for the Intercontinental Spelling Bee, which is taking place in Dubai from September 24 – 30 this week.
According to Phillips who spoke from their Dubai camp with our correspondent, ‘the children were in high spirit and ready to make Nigeria proud in Dubai; we currently own the franchise for the Intercontinental Spelling Bee competition and we made the first trip to Dubai in 2019, that was when we had the second edition of the competition. We went with two children and they performed and did their best; but for this year’s edition we were able to go with more children, eight in all, who will participate in all the three-categories of the competition, viz: categories 4, 5 and 6 which fall among the junior, lower and upper primary and secondary schools.
Speaking further, ‘this year, Nigeria will be featuring in two major categories 5 and 6 which are the junior and senior secondary schools. In our last outing in Dubai, the challenges before this edition were that the children were not fully prepared, due to paucity of funds. In fact, in the past years, we were travelling to the US, just to witness the competition, but now we are fully ready to compete and do better and even best this time around.
Over the years, as I said, our major challenge has been funds and support which we need from the corporate world and private sponsorship, even if the government does not support in this drive to improve the spelling skills of our children in these age categories.
However, we are still urgently craving for support to pay for the children’s registration in Dubai. The cost will cater for their feeding, accommodation and other sundry expenses during their stay, even as their parents have assisted in no small measures to actualize their children’s dream.
Akin Olu-Phillips spoke further on what distinguishes from other Spelling Bee Contests, ‘where we stand out is our technical expertise, on account of our cordial relationship with the USA Spelling Bee, because this is where the concept emanated from.’
One of the personalities who identified with the project is Hon. Fateema Aduke Mohammed who give the speller a boost during their camping when made a surprise visit to the Spellers at the camp to motivate and encourage them to do excellently well at the Spelling Bee Olympiad in Dubai, UAE.
The scholarship spellers who distinguished represented Nigeria are: Avar Dooshima Dorcas, Princess Adeja from International School Gboko, Benue State, while also David Audu Utennami, Nanret Adamu and Bentinen Anita Yiltok are from St. Augustine College, Du Jo’s Plateau State. Including also are Oni Inioluwa Daniel, Olujobi Oluwadarasimi Opeyemi, Anino-Oritshe Esezobor, representing Ambassadors College Ota, Ogun State, and Utibeabasi Okpokowuruk from El-an Nexus Academy, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, while Matt-Etika Pearl Koshi, from Eni Memorial High School, Calabar, Cross River State.