Kaffy...an inspiration to young Naija women everywhere..

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Kaffy...Dance Queen and Entrepreneur
Success is never truly success...unless one has been able to seize nothing, and make it absolutely something...

If there's one thing that truly intrigues me about my friend Oro, it is how she is so in tune with her Nigerian roots. On an ordinary day, if you walk into her apartment in the far, far land of Halifax, you would either hear 96.9 Cool FM (Lagos) blaring in through her speakers, or meet her dedicatedly watching a Nollywood movie on Iroko tv. 

While I never practiced similiar level of patriotism, she was able to convince me on one occasion to begin watching Project Fame West Africa...a yearly West African talent show hosted in Nigeria. With time, I became hooked on the show, and the various auditions on You-tube always kept me entertained (I honestly think all the crazy people are in Calabar!) 

I followed the show through the auditions, to the live shows, always eagerly waiting for a new episode to be posted on YouTube. Truth be told, the show was not exactly at par with the other shows I was used to seeing, (the Voice, Britain’s Got Talent, American Idol). Nevertheless, I was quite impressed with the calibre of voices that were chosen for the Project Fame Academy, and admired the coaches for the training given to them.

However, the person who has my greatest admiration remains the dance coach, Kafayat Shafau-Ameh a.k.a. Kaffy. My respect for her is not just based on who she is now, but where she is coming from.

Many of us may not remember a Nigeria of the late 90s/early 2000s, where you were deemed to be a failure for wanting to pursue a career in something as 'silly' as dancing. The entertainment industry back then was nothing compared to what it is now.

But back then, Kaffy had always shown her passion for dancing, and her name would usually come up in the basketball court of the Onikan Stadium as 'that girl that loves to dance'. Most people may not know, but Kaffy also played basketball, and was not scared to dabble in any sports which would keep her active.

She gained prominence by almost killing herself (Yes o! Because she danced for three days without stopping) for the Guinness World Record, for person to have danced the longest. Thereafter, she was a judge for the Malta Guinness Street Dance competitions. Today, Kaffy owns her own dance company, her own fitness class, is a regular feature on dance videos of popular artists, and is the dance coach for an international talent show. She is a self-made entrepreneur, and is undoubtedly the highest earning choreographer in Nigeria.

I greatly admire Kaffy for taking what she loves, and turning it into something beautiful. It goes to show that one does not necessarily need to be a doctor, or lawyer, blah..blah…to be successful in life. One simply has to identify that thing which makes you tick, and infuse determination and excellence. Kaffy has (literally) danced her way to success, and I believe her story is an inspiration to Nigerian women everywhere (and everybody) that it is not what you do that determines your success, but HOW you do it, and your passion in doing it.

Well done Kaffy! 



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