Don’t be deceived by the slight frame, Oyindamola Ige is very much the 21st-century definition of a superwoman. A lawyer by day, the business entrepreneur by afternoon and theatre director every other minute of the day, Oyinda’s passion for children has been her major creative driving force; it is why she started the K-Center, a privately owned recreational center in Ibadan just for kids and definitely what inspires her as the director of the Alo Children’s Theatre. Oyinda is also an author, having written a page-turning biography on her late mother-in-law, Justice Atinuke Ige. She takes time out of her busy schedule to play a game of 10 questions with us…

Tell us a little about yourself

My name is Oyinda Ige. I am married with three boys. In the course of my lifetime, I have developed a passion for children and that has sort of jump started my creativity. It’s one of the reasons why I opened the K-Center which is a sports and cultural venue for children in Ibadan. I am also the director of the Alo Children's Theatre.

What is the K-Center all about?

It was started as a recreational center strictly for children and youths but lately, we see that adults are interested in some of our activities as well. It is an exclusive place for the family that centers on fun, entertainment, development, sports, and learning.

When and what was the idea behind opening the K-Center?

The K-Center opened officially about two years ago. They say if something doesn't make you angry, you won't ever get creative. I opened the center because I was riled at the state of things in Ibadan. On getting to Ibadan, there was really no place that was safe and private within the city; a nice little haven exclusively for the family where parents can drop their children off. This was why I decided to start the K-center.

What is it about children that really piques your interest?

I love children, I love being around them. I often tell people that children are the most intelligent yet the most innocent of our species and thus they need to be handled in a special manner. I may be 44 years old but I feel to a large extent that I am still very much young at heart which is why I am able to successfully open a center such as this and connect with its clientele.

In all your experience, what have you learnt over the years about handling children?

Children are looking for who they can trust; for those that keep their promises and who will show them the love they crave. Most children are born insular and it takes a certain skill and patience to coax them out of their shells. They don't always want to be talked to as they have many things inside of them just waiting for the right opportunity to find expression and you only need to be willing to lend an ear to gain their trust. These days, parents are so busy making ends meet that they don't have time to listen.

Tell us about your children's theatre?

It's called the Alo Children’s Theatre under the Kulture Matrix group. It has been around since 2005 and basically, we do stage productions for the family that specifically target children as our audiences.

What makes your theatre group such a special one?

We make sure that all of our plays center around ongoing topical issues so as to better educate children on topical matters going on around them. A lot of times when news erupts, children are often left out of the loop and what we do with our plays is to try and bridge these gaps. Using a fun and entertaining medium such as stage plays is an effective way of getting across to children without boring them.

What has been your most successful production till date?

We had a play back then that ran for over 5 years called Akabi the Wicked Lion and Imoduye the Wise Tortoise. The play later had its own book adaptations and even its own cartoon which you can find on YouTube.

Your interest in the girl child is what motivated you to organize a play for the abducted Chibok girls last year, when did you discover this passion?

Besides being a ministry that I have been gifted with, my interest in the girl child came as a result of the way my father raised me. I was the only girl in the family and growing up, my father made me feel invincible like there was nothing I dreamt of that I couldn't achieve and that went a long way into molding me into being the person I am today. This coupled with not having any daughters of my own makes me feel hard pressed into helping little girls out there to be the best version of themselves.

What are your hopes and future plans for the K-Center?

I haven't even begun to scratch the barrel. I wake up every day with about 50 ideas for the K-center but my sole aim remains to recreate Disney in Africa with K-Center as the hub. As regards my future plans, I intend to follow up my career as an author. A few years ago, I wrote a book about my mother-in-law which many people loved and I recently opened a blog that weighs in the issue of mothers-in-law. The blog is meant to be a platform that sparks debate about what is usually a universal and controversial topic.

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