S. E. Williams | Executive Editor
The idea of being a citizen of the world is more than just a popular expression for inland region business owner, Toyin Dawodu, who immigrated to the U.S. from Nigeria by way of England in the early 1980s.
After establishing himself in America he earned a bachelor’s degree in Finance and an MBA in Business Marketing at Cal State San Bernardino.
In the ensuing years Dawodu built several successful businesses and is currently Chairman and CEO of Guaranty Investment Company, a real estate development company that has completed over $50 million in transactions over the last decade. He is also a managing partner of Capital Investment Group, a diversified investment fund for distressed acquisitions, and T&S Investment, used for real estate acquisitions in Southern California.
Dawodu’s success in business is mirrored in his commitment to serving others, and in recognition of the time and energy he devotes to humanitarian efforts, he was awarded the NAACP Freedom Fund Award.
As a successful businessman in America, he also remains connected to his Nigerian roots and is mindful of the plight of many citizens in the land of his birth.
Since 2018, more than 86.9 million people in Nigeria are living below the poverty level. And as such, the African nation is often referred to as the “poverty capital of the world.”
Today, Nigeria’s citizens are vulnerable to the impacts of hunger. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the collapse of the crude oil market, rising food costs, and recent unrest in the nation has only served to exacerbate food insecurity in the country.
In December 2020, Dawodu, through his company, Guaranty Investment Company, Inc., became the first organization to support and sponsor an initiative between the Nigerian American Public Affairs Foundation (NAPAC) and a Nigerian company, Sweet Sensations Confectionery Ltd., to feed Nigerians. The Sweet Sensation Food Security Initiative (SS-FOSI) is working to help alleviate hunger and poverty in this African nation. The goal—to feed 600,000 Nigerians. The initiative is providing cooked meals packaged by Sweet Sensation Restaurant and served to the needy.
NAPAC, under the stewardship of chairman Taye Doherty, is leading the effort in partnership with Sweet Sensations Confectionery Limited, one of the leading brands in quick service restaurant services in the food sector in Nigeria.
“For those of us who can afford three square meals a day, we should not forget our brothers and sisters back home that can hardly afford one meal a day,” Dawodu emphasized.
“I know 99.99% of Nigerians in the diaspora think about the country daily and how they can help a lot of our folks that are suffering,” said Dawodu. “Here’s your chance. No amount is too small to contribute. My company jump-started the effort by donating one million Nigerian Naira. Please join me. May God bless your pockets and reward you abundantly for your donations.”
The idea of providing high quality meals to poor Nigerians was borne out of NAPAC’s realization of its dual role of giving back to the land of its members birth, and to help their community both here in the USA and Nigeria.
“We cannot just focus our efforts only in the US while our people go hungry in Nigeria,” he stressed. “Our ultimate goal is to have the same impact as the American Red Cross, to alleviate human sufferings on impoverished families across Nigeria.”
The invitation to support this initiative is open to everyone.
NAPAC Foundation was founded in 2013 as a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization based in Los Angeles, California. It is the resource trustee for NAPAC USA. Its vision is to be the center-point of Nigerian American progress in the United States.
According to Dawodu, although the Sweet Sensation Food Security initiative was scheduled to run through the end of January, it is now an ongoing effort. In early January, NAPAC announced a global movement to raise $2 million to fight food insecurity in Nigeria.
To learn more about this initiative and/or to donate, please visit www.napacfdn.org.
S. E. Williams is executive editor of the IE Voice and Black Voice News.