My encounter with LEAD Transformation Initiative really imparted a positive transformation in me and now I picture myself a solutions man or a problem solver rather than remain in darkness.

While under the tutelage of LEAD Transformation Initiative, I was able to focus on the challenge posed by the high rate of type-2 diabetes disease among adults in Lagos state, South West Nigeria, aged 25-65 years of age due to their unhealthy eating lifestyle by exploring the nutritive and health benefits of our local root tuber, Taro – colocasia escullenta (cocoyam locally), to promote and produce snacks and flour for paste to reduce the blood level glucose and management of type-2 diabetes disease.

I have been able to take the project a notch higher from the incubation stage by identifying materials that will be needed for the process.
Part of what i have done so far with the project is to test run the process by going into the production of the products. I have been able to produce the chips and flour from the raw material, cocoyam. The products came out well and was found good by the panel that tasted. See attached pictures.

Apart from the above, I have also been able to come up with what the package will look like in the market by creating a design for the package and also a promotional item for the products. These products shall be distributed through supermarkets and retailers with promotional items like branded t-shirts, stickers, pens, mugs, mufflers and exercise books. There shall as well be occasional electronic adverts. We shall be on the lookout for occasions of large gatherings where our products will be displayed for sales.
One other thing which I have also engaged in briefly is to identify the likely source of farmland which i will use for the cultivation of the cocoyam plant. Presently, i am working out a partnership relationship with LEAD Transformation Initiative, for the cultivation of an acre of farmland for the plantation of cocoyam.

Future proposal
Having come this far with the project,I believe that the project will not just be for the management of type-2 diabetic patients alone but also a source of prevention for the spiking of the blood sugar level of those at risk of the disease. As a result of this I am looking at promoting a healthy eating culture for all. By this i will be exploiting the health benefits of the nutritive values of cocoyam. I dream of creating an alternative recipe for adults through the production of Healthy lunch snacks which will be in the form of roasted cocoyam to go along with stew made from organic vegetables which will be sourced from my organic vegetable farm. The strategy to be adopted in promoting this will be in the form of a cafe, where you come into a relaxed environment to order your snack and there shall as well be home/office delivery service to go along with it.

why project is needed.
In Lagos, South West Nigeria the eating lifestyle of adults aged 25-65 years is increasingly tending towards the western culture of high consumption of processed and refined foods. And a relationship exists between this cultural shift and the high rate of type-2 diabetes in Lagos state, Nigeria. Studies have shown that Nigerian hospitals are grappling with increasing cases of type-2 diabetes. Data from WHO and Diabetes Association of Nigeria also indicates that there are more than 1.56 million cases of diabetes in Nigeria as at 2015, of which above 40,000 adult deaths have occurred. The percentage prevalence of this disease is about 2% among the age group 25-65 years and is likely to reach 6% in 2030. It is also on record that the number of cases of type-2 diabetes in adults yet to be diagnosed is more than 1 million. With this high rate of the incidence of type-2 diabetes, I and my team are certain that the need exists for a project of this nature if we are to make any headway in reducing the rise of type-2 diabetes cases among adults of age 25-65 years in Lagos, South West Nigeria.

Estimated Cost
In other to bring the above project to reality, I intend to raise fund to be able to meet up with the expenses that will be involved with such project. As it is, I am seeking for USD$4,350.00 to be able to execute this project within the next 3 months.


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