Nearly three years ago I was a nervous recruit for the position of Team Leader with Restless Development. Today I stationed myself still nervous, but now extremely proud and eager to share the work I had done over the past years, and how amazing my journey had been.
In two years I have managed to achieve so much with Fabric of Life and with my involvement with the Bavubuka Foundation. It is interesting to look back and remember what dreams, aspirations and fears I had felt along the way, and expressing my achievement to an audience of interested Restless Development staff felt really good.
Screening some of our videos and pictures to my audience felt amazing. I am in such an honouree position to be an ambassador and contributor to work that is relevant, cool, innovative, exciting and just brilliant. I loved sharing thoughts and experiences about how Hip Hop has empowered young people to be leaders in their community and how it has give them focus and drive to live positive lives. Hip Hop has also give them strength in being able to connect with different generations, and give them a feeling of integrity and pride when raising issues and creating dialogue with elders and community leaders
Sharing the work with others brought me back to the original driving force that led me to make the crazy decision to move to Uganda. That original motive and passion that pushed me to make hard choices about work and life, that pushed me completely out of all my comfort zones, that propulsion into the unknown. I admit there were many times at the beginning when I had sobbed in the shower, completely terrified of the people and places I was about to encounter. Not believing that a single, sometimes unstable, seemingly unqualified girl such as myself could achieve the things that I was dreaming of.
One fundamental theme that ran through my presentation was the learning that happened along the way. Each task and situation that I have encountered with Fabric of Life and the Bavubuka Foundation, has required me to be bold, resourceful, adaptable and brave. I have sought out and given myself the skills, knowledge and experience that most people would gain over years in a variety of different jobs and sectors. Coming from a country where you are led to believe that education is only given by experts, and that without a degree or certification you are unable to follow certain career paths, I believe I have been very courageous in my own path.
I am very grateful for the opportunity I got with Restless Development and the International Citizen Service, without the support they gave me, I would never had the chance to volunteer in Uganda with young people, and therefore would not be where I am today. I am particularly grateful to the amazing group of young change-makers I met today, who were so willing and eager to offer help, support and guidance. The world indeed would be a better place if all business was orientated in creating capacity for others to excel and be empowered. Bravo to all of us for contributing to this generation of active agents of change.