Our tech challenge winner: a royal visit and much more

Patrick Obumselu, the winner of Thomson Foundation's 2019 Commonwealth Digital Challenge, has been in London meeting mentors and receiving advice on progressing his project.

The sexual abuse reporting platform is designed to ensure justice for survivors of sexual abuse in Nigeria. It took first prize in the competition which is designed to encourage innovation through media and is supported by the Elizabeth R Media Fund

Here he reflects on his experience.

I was invited to Buckingham Palace

Patrick Obumselu, Crimeshred

I was so excited during my first visit to the Thomson Foundation’s headquarters and the first day was important for the future of my project.

I had a very intense meeting with the foundation’s experts to help them understand more about my platform, Crimeshred, and to help me explain it more effectively.   

Crimeshred aims to offer a secure, online space where those affected by sexual abuse can report crimes committed against them. Independent investigators – including journalists - will gather enough evidence to compel the police to act.

Trainer Liz Pike helped me to present my project in a more engaging way.  Meeting with Liz taught me how to effectively communicate my idea to stakeholders and this training paid off during later presentations at the innovation charity Nesta and to staff at the Queen’s London residence, Buckingham Palace.  

Nesta Challenges

I had the opportunity to meet with Kate Adams, the director of Nesta Challenges who was one of my mentors during the Commonwealth Digital Challenge.

Her fellow experts at Nesta showed me how other legal access challenge projects, which help people to better understand and resolve their legal problems, work and how I could learn from their solutions. I was also given a lot of resources to work with. 

I was invited to Buckingham Palace by Emma Goodey, the Royal Household’s digital engagement manager to give a presentation. 

I received valuable positive feedback. The Palace’s tech experts advised me to ensure Crimeshred is designed to suit the end user and to have a human face.

On my final day with the Thomson Foundation I was privileged to meet the British politician, Lord Boateng, who gave me a tour of the Houses of Parliament. He gave me a lot of positive feedback and advice.  



My stay in London wasn’t just work. I saw the Lion King musical, toured the London tourist sites and saw the London Eye. I had the chance to eat sushi for the first time.  

It was really a great honour and privilege to be invited to the UK by the Thomson Foundation. It is a lovely place and what great people. The weather wasn't as bad as I thought it would be!  

The Elizabeth R Media Fund

The Elizabeth R Media Fund (originally the Elizabeth R Broadcasting Fund) was established by Buckingham Palace from the royalties earned from “Elizabeth R” - the 1992 BBC documentary which marked the 40th anniversary of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. Its original purpose was to help Commonwealth broadcasters who received a donation from the Fund. It now works to encourage the development of digital platforms which promote civil society.

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