top of page


United Nations Academic Impact and MCN are proud to partner on the Millennium Fellowship.  In the three months the application was open in 2019, over 7,000 young leaders applied to join the Class of 2019 on 1,209 campuses across 135 nations.  69 campuses worldwide (just 6%) were selected to host the 805 Millennium Fellows. 

During the Millennium Fellowship, Millennium Fellows' dedicated 96,705 hours and their 422 unique projects positively impacted the lives of 564,366 people worldwide.



Ahmadu Bello University | Zaria, Nigeria | Advancing SDG 6 & UNAI 1


" I am excited to be a Millennium Fellow because it provides me with the opportunity to, not only tap into an incredible community of leaders and resources but also witness the incredible work young change makers like myself are doing all over the world. I believe that young people coming together all over the world can help create the kind of world we want to see. "

Millennium Fellowship Project: HOPE RISING PROJECT

In 2017, I and a group of friends learnt about the lead poisoning epidermic in Bagega community of Zamfara State, Nigeria. The lead poisoning was as a result of the illegal gold mining , reported to have killed over 1500 people in Zamfara State. Children in this community have also paid a heavy price as a joint report from the Doctors Beyond Boarders and the U.S Center for Disease Control and Prevention relays the horror that out of 120 children examined, an alarming 96% were found to show life threatening lead concentration levels in their blood.

From our needs assessment in Bagega, we identified three major challenges: contamination of their land and underground sources, record breaking desertification rates, and water scarcity.

Our project- HOPE RISING PROJECT, we designed a holistic model that provided clean drinking water in Bagega community, used the clean water to grow fresh agricultural products lke tomatoes, vegetables, hot pepper and fish using the aquaponics method to tackle food insecurity, create employment by hiring beneficiaries to build this model for long term empowerment, then partnered with the local government to create a market for them.

To tackle the water problem, we devised a continuous flow mechanism through collaborative efforts with National Research Institute for Chemical Technology, Zaria to develop our biotech filter, a cheap, reliable and readily affordable solution to water poisoning. We also built a rural water hub, making over 4,000 liters of clean, portable drinking water available in Baggega.

With the heavy land contamination also in view, we also initiated our Jatropha Remediation Scheme, planting over 1000 Jatropha seedling across Baggega. Jatropha is a drought resistant plant which provides a wide resistance to desertification, and cleanses the soil of lead contamination by reducing lead concentration in soil fro an impressive 4.33mg/kg to 0.02mg/kg in 13 weeks in through phyto remediation.

We partnered with the United for Climate Change and National Biotechnology Development Agency, to set up an Aqua-fresh farm, comprising a green house made from locally sourced materials, and an aquaponics system to grow fresh tomatoes and catfish.

Our project have made available clean drinking water to over 5000 people in Bagega community through our rural hub, saving women and children a walk of 1.5km daily. In addition 30 individuals have already been trained with the skills necessary for maintaining the hub, ensuring clean water supply all year round.

About the Millennium Fellow

Francis Eneji is currently in his penultimate year studying Human Physiology at Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria. At the core of it, Francis is passionate about making social impact, reducing poverty and unemployment.

bottom of page