About Us

The Foundation

What Drives Us

MarkWillows Foundation is the National Alliance for Social-Emotional Learning and Soft Skills.

According to CASEL (Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning), social and emotional learning (SEL) is an integral part of education and human development. It is the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring decisions.

Social-emotional skills as well as soft skills are crucial for the wellbeing and happiness of every child and youth. They are relevant for educational outcomes, for employability prospects and for addressing the kinds of global challenges that the Sustainable Development Goals (especially Goals 4 and 8) seek to address.

Social and emotional skills and soft skills can help societies meet the needs of all of their young people, their families and communities and in the long term save governments money.

Our vision is to build a prosperous Nigeria where all learners and youths are empowered with skills that arm them for success in school, work, and all aspects of life.

Our mission is to inspire and equip all relevant stakeholders concerned with students and youths in Nigeria with information and resources that promote quality and equitable social and emotional learning and soft skills in schools, homes and workplaces.

Our Objectives:

MarkWillows Foundation is established to achieve the following objectives:

1. Provide tools, resources, skills, and knowledge to schools and educators at all levels to help improve student social and emotional skills and encourage students to exhibit positive social behaviors.

2. Provide tools, resources, skills, and knowledge to young people to help improve their soft skills and prepare them for the future of work.

3. Partner with government and other stakeholders to promote the spread of social and emotional learning and soft skills in schools and among young people.

4. Be the one-stop centre in Nigeria for information and knowledge on social and emotional learning and soft skills.

5. To contribute to achieving SDG 4 (Ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all).

6. To contribute to achieving SDG 8 by equipping individuals with the necessary skills (soft skills incorporated into hard skills) that will drive/promote more ethical forms of entrepreneurship and job creation and also make more ethical candidates for the available jobs thereby contributing to achieve productive employment and decent work for all by 2030.

One Intervention, 3 emerging impact levels

Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Works

Improved Behavior

Studies show decreased dropout rates, school and classroom behavior issues, drug use, teen pregnancy, mental health problems, and criminal behavior where SEL is implemented.

Increased Academic Achievement

According to a 2011 meta-analysis of 213 studies involving more than 270,000 students, those who participated in evidence-based SEL programs showed an 11% point gain in academic achievement.

Strong Return on Investment

A review of six SEL interventions in evidence-based SEL programs showed that for every dollar invested there was an economic return of 11 dollars.


Our Board Members

Associate Professor, Faculty of Education, University of Lagos
Co-Founder/CEO, Lead Inspire Network
Special Assistant, Education Matters, Delta State Government

Key Focus


National SEL Conference

Partnership with Faculties of Education

SEL Certification for Teachers

Curriculum on SEL & Soft Skills for State Governments

Soft Skills Clubs in Universities

Soft Skills Clubs in Secondary Schools

Advocacy on Traditional and Social Media


Executive Committee

Economist, Global Policy at The ONE Campaign
Partner, Alli-Balogun, Okeke and Taylor


Panel of Partners

Literacy Educator, Sunnydale School
Lead Consultant, Chalkboard Communications