Founder of the Rainbow Foundation and Programme Director of the UNESCO Port Harcourt World Book Capital 2014 project, Mrs Odo Claire ‘Koko’ Kalango, has been nominated for the prestigious national honour of Member of the Order of the Niger (MON) by President Goodluck Jonathan. She joins a list of over 300 awardees that are being honoured for their service to the benefit of the nation.
In her teenage years, Mrs. Koko Kalango emerged a prize winner of the MOBIL National Essay Competition with the title ‘What Can I do for my Country?’ and represented Nigeria at the Kirby Smith Youth Camp organised by the Lions Club in Arizona for promising leaders. After spending five years writing a weekly lifestyle column in This Day Newspapers, she founded the Rainbow Book Club and kicked off the ‘Get Nigeria Reading again!’ campaign in 2005. In recognition of her work, she was invited to serve on the READ Campaign of the Federal Ministry of Education (in 2007) and sponsored by the British Council to represent Nigeria at the Edinburgh International Book Festival (2010). Koko has worked in Nigeria, the UK and the US, with experience in Education, Communications and Social Development. She is the Festival Director of the Garden City Literary Festival, now Port Harcourt Book Festival. A graduate of French from the University of Benin and International Relations from the University of Lancaster, Koko has also been a member of the Royal Institute of International Affairs as well as the Royal African Society.