Theophilus Y. Danjuma: Founder of TY Danjuma Foundation

Lt. Gen. Theophilus Y. Danjuma, a retired Nigerian Army chief of staff and an astute and successful businessman, established TY Danjuma Foundation in 2009. It is a private Nigerian philanthropic organization committed to improving the quality of life for disadvantaged Nigerians.

It operates by supporting primarily health and education interventions undertaken by non-governmental organizations, community and faith-based organizations, youth organizations, women’s groups and similar groups working in Nigeria. The activities are designed to promote philanthropic works across the country.

The foundation has a vision of a Nigeria where everyone has access to high quality but affordable healthcare and education and also has equal opportunities to realize his potential. Its mission is therefore to support initiatives that improve access to health and educational opportunities.

The foundation is committed to enhancing community healthcare by providing free medical services to rural communities that lack adequate medical facilities. It is out to improve the quality of education of children and young people of 18 years and younger. It also focuses on alleviating extreme poverty in communities across the country by providing clean drinking water and encouraging education and women empowerment.

TY Danjuma Foundation is structured to operate through partnerships – a strategy designed to build institutional capacity of intervening groups, support innovation and ensure that interventions are culturally relevant and meet the needs of target beneficiaries. The foundation encourages its partners to forge collaborations and partnerships with local, state and national governments and their agencies to enhance sustainability of projects.

Relationship with governments and agencies is designed to involve them in the assessment of the projects being implemented to ensure that the grants provided are utilized for the approved purposes. This is in recognition that its interventions are the primary responsibility of the government and cannot absolve government of the responsibility.

The foundation also seeks collaboration with other grant makers and international agencies working in its target areas. It may leverage additional funding from other sources to support partners’ initiatives. It carries out analyses of the projects it funds in order to strengthen its future grant making, policies and practices in the areas it operates.

The foundation has built collaborative relationships with key groups of actors in the areas of its desired interventions. These include the civil society organisations such as non-governmental organisations, community based groups, faith-based organisations, youth and women’s groups in Nigeria.

TY Danjuma Foundation also partners with other foundations that work in similar intervention areas. This is an encouragement of international foundations to invest and work in Nigeria through joint funding initiatives. The foundation engages the national and international philanthropic sector for the purpose of advancing philanthropy. It leverages international expertise in projects implementation.

The foundation seeks collaborations with private sector institutions that use business solutions to solve social problems. These include organizations with corporate social responsibility initiatives and public-private partnerships in the funding of large-scale projects.

The foundation’s philanthropic giving reached a significant milestone in 2014 when the total amount in grants crossed the N2 billion-mark. It has supported 98 institutions across 19 states of the federation to implement 153 projects. The projects are spread across the six geo-political zones of the country.

The foundation is looking for credible organisa­tions with innovative, practical and relevant project ideas to work with wherever the projects may be located in any part of the country.  It believes in working together as partners to deliver positive results and make lasting impacts that empower communities around the country. 

Grant making is the primary funding scheme of the foundation. It publishes yearly a call for concept notes of proposals requesting qualified organisation based in Nigeria to apply for funds to implement projects in the key focus areas of health, education and skills training.