What we do

What we do

National Leadership Summit (NLS)

This is a summit designed for high school and university students as an approach to addressing leadership challenges in the country. This summit brings together students to learn about design thinking with their peers and to learn from leading individuals in various industries.
Our 2016 NLS was held at Petra Secondary School, Ibadan, Oyo State, and it had eight different schools represented with over 80 students in attendance. There were leadership and design thinking sessions for the students and it helped us gain an insight on what we needed to teach students moving forward.
Our 2017 NLS was held at Covenant University and it included keynote speeches and several sessions to help build our students. We had over 12 secondary schools represented as well as students from Covenant University and other tertiary institutions.

We had partnerships with global Organizations including the Global Shapers Community, World Economic Forum, Guardian Nigeria, UNILAG FM, and more. 


Our 2022 NLS was held at the international conference center at Lead City University, Ibadan, Oyo State. We had over 10 secondary Schools present as well as students of the University of Ibadan, Lead City University, and other tertiary institutions. It included keynote speeches, a panel discussion, a high school debate, the grand finale of the Idea for Change Competition, networking, and more.
Our guests included Engineer Abiodun Fijabi (International and Award winning public speaker), Seun Fakorede (Hon. Commissioner for Youths and Sports), Ayo Arikawe (Co-Founder and CTO Thrive Agric Limited), Femi Adeyeye (National Publicity Secretary, AAC), Dr. Oluremi Olutimo, (Secretary-General, United Nations Association of Nigeria), Mide Olayinka (CEO, Kashbase), and more.
We received funding from the generous OneFoundation and, and our host of partners and sponsors were the United Nations Association of Nigeria, Lead City University, Junior Chamber International (JCI UI), Kayode leadership Alabi initiative (KLCI), and more.

Aliu Empowerment Program (AEP)
The AEP is a program that is geared towards empowering individuals and communities, through the Aliu Development fund we are able to carry out three different outreaches • Scholar Support by State: This is an empowerment program that provides deserving high achieving but low-income students with full or close to full tuition, resources to help them thrive at school, and training on community development to enable them to give back to their community.


Aliu Empowerment Program (AEP) is honestly the best that happened to me this year as far as my academics is concerned; and being opportune to be tagged a scholar, having successfully undergone certain self-building projects is one I will hold in high esteem.
I seize this opportunity to express a heart-felt gratitude for the financial support from this great program. It is one that has made an indelible mark in my life.
God bless AEP! I am indeed grateful!

Ibeh Paul

University of Lagos, 2022/2023

I would like to express my sincerest gratitude for the scholarship fund I have received from this organization.
It's truly a great honour to have been chosen as a recipient, and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity it has provided me. Though it tarries, yes it came in its time. Your commitment to empowering individuals through education is commendable, and your generosity made a significant difference. Thank you for your support and belief in our potential. This is not only development in education but development of our society, I promise to make the most of this opportunity and strive to make a positive impact in my community.
God bless AEP, God bless Upsurge Foundation
Thank you AEP and all Admins

Ogunbiyi Elijah

FUNAAB 2022/2023

  • Household Food Support Outreach: The program aims to provide essential food supplies to vulnerable households, ensuring they have access to food items through innovative and fun means.
  • Community Healthcare Outreach: The Program focuses on educating and empowering individuals to make healthier choices regarding their nutrition, physical activity, and weight.


When the Healthcare Outreach Project was brought to our attention, it was immediately granted as the Palace has been working on ways to aid the health status of residents in Itele. The initiative is an opportunity for people, especially the aged and senior citizens to remember that good health must be prioritized above all; it is non-negotiable. Thank you Upsurge Foundation for bringing such initiative to our community.

Mr Waheed Oluwaseun

The Palace Admin Officer to Onitele of Itele

I thank the Oba Onitele of Itele for approving such an initiative in our community and most especially I thank the organizers of this event for this program. I was informed my BP is fine and it’s such a great thing to know about our health once in a while. I have also been advised to watch my food intake, consume more fruits in order to live a healthy life. Once again, I really thank the organizers for this setup.”

Mrs. Adetunji Adebola

A beneficiary and a teacher

I really thank the organizers of this program for bringing it to our community because normally this health screening and consultation would have cost us money and time especially for someone like me that is always busy. I was told my BP is fine and I was advised to stay away from very late food at night. My gratitude also goes to Oba Onitele for this amazing initiative.

Mrs. Sekina Olagunju

Iyaloja Itele

This is a Tech Academy where we provide our students with quality and affordable training in various digital skills. With our strong teaching model and fantastic trainers, we are able to train our students to use their skills to stay on top of the economy. This training includes: Skilled Facilitators Certificate of Participation Hands-on Learning Internship Opportunities Membership Opportunities Amazing Prizes Cohort 1 (April 12 – May 12, 2021): In this cohort, we offered 6 skills to our students and they were: Web Development (JavaScript, HTML, and CSS) UI/UX Design Data Analysis Graphics Design Web Design (WordPress) Digital Marketing Cohort 2 (October 25th – November 26th, 2021): In this cohort, we offered 3 Courses to our students and they were: UI/UX Design Data Analysis Graphics Design
This is a 2-day intensive mentorship program that seeks to train talented and skill-driven young people who have shown passion to building a better Africa and are willing to give back to their communities with their skills, talents, and resources. Twenty participants are trained, mentored, provided platforms to showcase and harness their skills, and given a chance to network with other bright minds. The first cohort held virtually in June 2021. Engr Abiodun Fijabi was our RLF mentor and he took our fellows through two days of leadership, creative writing, and public speaking training.

The second cohort took place on the 29th and 30th of March, 2022, at Lead City University, Ibadan, Oyo State. Twenty participants received in-person training sessions and were mentored, provided platforms to showcase and harness their skills, and given a chance to network with other bright minds. There were sessions and workshops from design thinking to public speaking, creative writing, leadership building, fitness, and more. Our fellows got to work on project ideas that would be implemented at the end of the fellowship. Our facilitators included:

  • Engr Abiodun Fijabi (CEO, Lord Princely Associates)
  • Mrs. Deborah Adejobi (Senior Assistant Registrar, Lead City University)
  •  Racheal Balogun (Program Officer, KLCI)
  • Omolola Lipede (Program Manager, KLCI)
  •  Tomiwa Olusesi (Sub-Saharan Africa Community Lead at Peace First)
  • Aliu Iyanuoluwa (CEO, Myfarmbase Africa)
  • Collins Alfred (Founder, Ascent Innovation Lab

The third cohort took place at Hotel Chez Lando, Kigali, Rwanda on the 27th and 28th of May, 2023. Fellows from across five (5) African Countries received intensive hybrid top-notch mentorship programs that equipped 20 young Africans with employability skills, soft skills, technological skills, problem-solving skills ultimately building their potentials to be agents of social change.

  • Mariam Adebayo Esq (Orange Corner Alumnus)
  • Kelvin Uduma (Agronomist, Barogu Farm Enterprise)
  • Alfred Collins (Co-Founder, Ascent Innovation Lab.)
  • Dada Samson Esq (Intellectual Property & Technology Lawyer)
  • Joshua Tahinduka (Professional Skills Lead, TEP, ANDELA)
  • Hammed Kayode Alabi (Founder, Kayode Alabi Leadership and Career Initiative)
  • Daisy Batete (Vice-Chairperson, Youth for Rwanda)
  • Damilola Fasoranti (President, JCI Mille Collines)
  • Amina Umuhoza (CEO SAYE company Itd)


The African Royal Leadership Fellowship 2023 in Kigali was an exceptional program for me. I love being in the midst of like minded youth, particularly Africans, and that is what this program brought to pass. Kudos to whoever was in charge of the curriculum, as the sessions were thoughtfully curated, covering a wide range of topics from leadership and business to design thinking and creative writing that are needed in the 21st century. My Aha moment was during the pitches, but more so during the Idea Pitch Competition. The speaker, Mr. Damilola Fasoranti, captivated the audience with his aura, expertise, and interactive approach. His ability to connect with the participants and deliver practical strategies made him a standout speaker. Having him again would undoubtedly enrich future cohorts of the fellowship. Shout-out to the other speakers; I definitely would love to be under their teaching again. To the RLF23 Team, great job! (The Lunch also made each of my days,

Eunice Adewusi (Nigeria)

( Student, African Leadership University)

The program was amazing! A worthwhile experience for that matter, I got to leave the place transformed, with a renewed will and strength to impact the world. I loved Damilola Fasoranti and Joshua Tahinduka. Their enthusiasm and charisma in the delivery of their presentations was mesmerising! I learnt about the PREP formula to use before doing a public speech. I also loved the striking realization that our presentations are to be considered as a gift to our viewers. Damilola brought a flip mindset that was really interesting. I learnt that I can always do something differently and still bring great results.

Ivy Mwango Getanda (Kenya)

Civil Engineer

Student, African Leadership University General overview: The program was very well-organized and informative. The speakers were experts in their respective fields, and they shared their knowledge and insights in an engaging and thought-provoking way. I learned a lot from the program, and it will help me be a more effective leader. Standout session: The session on creative writing stood out for me because it was so different from the other sessions. He was a very talented writer and shared his writing process with us. I found his insights beneficial, and I am excited to try some of his techniques in my writing. I enjoyed all the sessions too. Speaker I would love to have again: I would love to have Damilola Fasoranti speak at the next African Royal Leadership Fellowship. He is a gifted speaker, and he would be able to share his knowledge and insights with us in a way that would be both engaging and thought-provoking. I enjoyed his feedback and everything he said about Pitching.

Fani Akan (Nigeria)

Student, African Leadership University

School Outreaches
Through our Design thinking tour we carryout school outreaches, providing students with empowering sessions ranging from leadership, creative writing, to problem solving skills, our goal being to help students in the area of design thinking so that they can in turn transform their community.
In early 2020, we visited His Royal Diadem College and taught about 100 students design thinking and how they can utilize it in their immediate communities.
In June and October 2022, we had empowerment programs in two schools where we taught the female students on design thinking and how they can contribute to their communities.
Dialogue Series
These are virtuals leadership training sessions where we invite experts in various fields to speak to our community members on important issues and topics. These topics range from leadership development to goal setting, risk management, and more. These trainings started during the start of the pandemic and helped us connect with young people across the country who we trained and provide platforms to learn about leadership and design thinking.