Sunday, August 25, 2019 2:25 pm
Freeborn Ukpede, Senior Pastor of U.S-based Abundant Grace Gospel Assembly, wins the 2019 Delta Role Model Awards
By Nehru Odeh
Freeborn Ukpede’s self-effacing personality speaks volumes. He may not have covered illustrious global magazines like Forbes, Time and Newsweek, but his humanitarian deeds are etched in the hearts of the people. Though based in Atlanta,United States, the Senior Pastor of Abundant Grace Gospel Assembly, alongside his team of medical practitioners,have, for the past 16 years, been offering free medical services to the poor and less privileged people in Delta State. The remarkable thing about his altruistic services is that he has been offering them without sponsorship.
His humanitarian interventions paid off when the African Child Foundation, a non-governmental organization aimed at rewarding excellence and raising role models in the Nigerian society honoured him with the 2019 Delta Role Model Awards on 8 August 2019 after he emerged winner in a keenly contested online vote. The awards ceremony held at Sweet Spirit Hotel in Asaba, Delta State.
Ukpede, while expressing appreciation to his church, friends and family dedicated the award to them.”We won. Thanks to everyone who made it possible … We do it not for perishable crowns. We do it for His glory and we receive the honor that we get along the way. God will always, all the same, use men to bring honor on our way,” he said.
Ukpede’s award is well deserved given the fact that he has been engaged in this humanitarian work without sponsors.”We have been doing this or 16 consecutive years now. We need sponsors in Nigeria. Our sponsors so far have been our church here in Atlantaas well as my colleagues and friends here in the United States. I have also received sporadic help from some o our families and friends in Nigeria,” he told TheNEWS.
The Delta State- born clergy’s victory was no mean feat since he had to scale through many hurdles spanning 12 weeks before winning the award:namely, the nomination, voting, collation, questionnaire, examinationof questionnaire, interview and the selection stages
African Child Foundation, which has been in existence for fifteen years, is a growing community of young African leaders passionate about humanitarian services, as entrepreneurs, civil and public servants, career professionals, clergies and farmers, “We believe it’s in our DNA to help others and add value to the society,” the website of the foundation reads.
Aside from the Delta Role Model Awards, the African Child Foundation also awards deserving Nigerians in other categories such as African Integrity Award, African Child Prize, and the Nigerian Role Mode Award..
According to the website of the foundation, the Delta Role Model Awards DREAMS has earned a reputation forshowcasing endearing legacies of excellence for over 15years without government sponsorship.