Introducing myself and my journal: Impacting Positively life' of individuals living with altered images
My name is Ogo Maduewesi, I am a Daring, Innovative, Resilient and dynamic lady, a self-taught in her focus area, an advocate for positive change, healthy living and Liberation from restrictions of social, economic and health conventions. Selfless and passionate about empowering & impacting positively life’s of individuals’ living with Vitiligo, altered image & skin conditions, motivating behavior change around unusual visual appearance and also an advocate for plant- based nutrition for health especially for women and empowering young girls/ladies.
I am the founder/Executive Director of Vitiligo Support and Awareness Foundation (VITSAF), a not-for-profit, patient–driven, patient-advocate organization incorporated in Nigeria and passionately concerned about the needs of persons living with Vitiligo, skin imperfections, altered images and autoimmune Disorder primarily in Africa, helping ameliorate the agony people suffer as a result of turning from black to white. VITSAF’s major goals are absolute Support to its members, extensive Vitiligo and skin health awareness and enlightenment; motivating behavior change around unusual visual appearance through Entertainment Education, understanding autoimmune disorder and achievement of World Vitiligo Day - June 25th.
I am also the Volunteer Coordinator Nigeria for Kechies Project a New York based organisation empowering the girl child education from Primary to Secondary Schools.
I am an Ashoka Fellow https://www.ashoka.org/fellow/ogo-maduewesi
Vitiligo in spite of not being a rare disease, is a hugely stigmatized condition in Africa, facing not only a visible, disfiguring skin problem, but with widespread social discrimination fueled by powerful myths, discrimination and stigma. The myth about Vitiligo being contagious is likely the result of a common fear: people stay away from anything different. It has a major impact on the Quality of Life (QoL) of patients. It is one of the most psychologically, emotionally and psychosocially devastating chronic skin conditions, which has a major impact on both patients and their families. It is a totally neglected and underestimated condition by the health sector, they label it cosmetic and not life threatening. The main contributing factor to social stigma is that Vitiligo is considered by many as a wrath of the gods, confused as burns from fire, mystery, nemesis, magical, spiritual attack etc.
Women as usual are most vulnerable to the devastating impact of Vitiligo as they are most times rejected out rightly by the opposite sex and their families in most cases. We have cases where a husband left wife with three kids because of the condition, A young lady lost her job in a hospitality industry because one of the regular customers (a lady) detested her for her white patches (Vitiligo).
Innovative personal change, Positive Living, Empowering and Impacting Lives of individuals living with Vitiligo and altered images, Plant based Nutrition
Communicating my causes and ideas, Resources (human and others)
My Vision for the Future:
To achieve a Positive Lifestyle and awaken Positive Consciousness for individuals with vitiligo, skin imperfections and altered images in Africa. A healthy nation through plant based nutrition
My Areas of Expertise:
Skin imperfections, Altered images, Confidence Building, Healthy eating, Positive Living