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Nigerian schoolboy wins global prize

This event, organised by Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan, invites schoolchildren worldwide to illustrate their dream cars, using their imaginations without limitations.
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In a remarkable display of talent and creativity, 10-year-old Oluwademilade Odumuboni, a student at Corona School in Gbagada Lagos, has been announced as the global grand prize winner of the prestigious 2022/23 edition of the Toyota Dream Car Art Contest. This annual event, organised by Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) in Japan, invites schoolchildren worldwide to illustrate their dream cars, using their imaginations without limitations.

Odumuboni’s winning entry featured a waste compactor vehicle with a visionary concept aimed at supporting food production and ensuring a clean environment, particularly in African communities. His submission stood out among 782,852 entries from 90 countries, earning him the coveted global prize.

The award ceremony, held on Saturday, September 2, in Lagos and organised by Toyota Nigeria Limited on behalf of TMC Japan, was a momentous occasion. Oluwademilade Odumuboni received a cash prize of $5,000, a plaque, and a certificate for his outstanding achievement. In addition, Corona School was honored with a $10,000 prize, recognizing the nurturing environment that fostered his creativity. Mr. Ojeagbega Oserogho, his art teacher, was also rewarded with a laptop for his guidance.

Speaking at the ceremony, Kunle Ade-Ojo, Managing Director of Toyota (Nigeria) Limited, expressed his excitement and pride in Oluwademilade’s accomplishment. He noted that the young Nigerian had not only dared to dream but had also put forth a unique and inspirational idea, placing Nigeria on the global map of this prominent art contest for children.

The Toyota Dream Car Art Contest was initiated by TMC of Japan in 2004 and later embraced by Toyota Nigeria Limited as a corporate social responsibility initiative to encourage children to express their visions of future cars through art.

In his remarks, Ade-Ojo emphasised that the contest aimed to inspire children to imagine a peaceful world full of smiles while promoting a friendly society. He expressed Toyota’s commitment to nurturing a lifelong friendship with these young artists, encouraging them to care for the planet and explore the bounds of their imagination.

Ade-Ojo further explained the contest’s structure, highlighting that annually, three winners are selected in Nigeria from each of the three age categories: Category 1 (children not older than seven years), Category 2 (8-11 years), and Category 3 (12-15 years old), totaling nine winners. These national winners, along with their artworks, are then sent to Japan to compete with entries from all over the world. Oluwademilade Odumuboni is now one of the three global grand prize winners, earning him a $5,000 USD reward.

The ceremony was attended by Oluwademilade’s proud parents, family members, fellow students from Corona School, and their teachers, including Head Teacher Henrietta Eguagie. Eguagie lauded Oluwademilade for bringing glory to the school and commended Toyota for inspiring young people to unleash their creative expression.

In response, Oluwademilade expressed his gratitude to Toyota Nigeria Limited, TMC of Japan, his school, art teachers, and his parents for their unwavering support. He stated, “I appreciate Toyota for this award and for believing in a little child like me… I’m also grateful for the big award shield; I’ll surely display it in my room and admire it every day when I wake up in the morning. This experience has taught me that hard work pays and that we should never give up.”

With his remarkable achievement, Oluwademilade Odumuboni has not only captured the hearts of many but has also demonstrated the boundless potential of young talents in Nigeria on the global stage. His victory serves as an inspiration to young artists and dreamers worldwide.

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