My purpose is in supporting the next generation of leaders and organisations to realise their true potential; enabling them to break systematic injustice for community transformation
Over the past 4 years I have found international development work really tricky; perhaps because I’ve seen with my own eyes how the natural resilience of people and communities goes unrecognised at best, and is corrupted at worst, by the inherently neocolonial practices of so many international NGO’s working in the field. More troubling for me, is the entrenched mistrust within local communities that this approach has instilled, leading to a culture of competition instead of collaboration, for control of the limited resources and opportunities available.
Since my first visit in 2015, Uganda has been a blessing, my greatest challenge and my biggest education in life. It was there I founded the fashion educational platform Fabric of Life, supported and facilitated multiple programmes for Hip-Hop movement the Bavubuka Foundation, and coordinated the In Place of War Creative and Social Entrepreneurship Programme. It was amongst the many amazing people I met during this time that I found something that is both a tool for change and a refuge; work within the arts, music and creative and social entrepreneurship, which provided fertile ground for an approach rooted in community self-expression, cultural preservation, healing and economic empowerment.
Within my roles, I brokered the magic of the young people I build with, with those that may be able to offer support and experience that quality in return. My aim was to foster environments that supported growth, skill development and potential to flourish as an authentic individual. This means opening up spaces and platforms for connection and collaboration, where young people envision and build their own future.
I am forever grateful for what I have been so privileged to experience and learn over the last 3 years in Uganda. I have seen through the eyes of so many people I have met, that Uganda has an important story to tell; of a rich culture, a talented youth, and a new generation of warriors who are stepping forward to reclaim their right to bring the future they envision into reality.
Now back in the UK, amongst the rolling hills of Devon, I am proud to work in my role as Studio Assistant for Exeter-based arts production studio and co-working space Kaleider . My aim is to offer the wisdom, experience and love I have to build a life here, and in-turn learn from the amazing collection of artists, creative technologists, scientists, producers and young people I get to work with each day. My adventures continue.