Could you describe the first moment when you realized you wanted to do this work?
Being a child born in the fragile country where abuse of human rights have being normalize, the existing inequality between the very rich and the most poor affected my childhood and influenced my attitude for social justice. I spent my primary and high school education in public schools. At age 10, I knew what the best was for me. To finish education and have certificate that allowed me to enter University was my first moment when I realized that I could do this job.
Could take us through a day of your work? Where do you put most of your time and energy?
I started a community based organization at age 15 while I was still in secondary school to allow my peer young boy and girls have dialogue forum with medical doctor as regard HIV and AIDS. This shifted my vision till today. I spend most of my time with youth leaders and movements to build their capacity in democratic governance and respect for human rights. My energy is focused on advocating rights of young people to have positive development and dignified living.
What are your key achievements in your work?
For the last 8 years I managed to strengthen youth awareness to public life. Young people adherence to values of democracy and non-violence culture while reclaiming their rights is positive outcomes while the country is unstable with militias groups.
How does your organization promote inclusive participation of youth from diverse backgrounds?
My structure promote gender inclusivity among young people throughout training, leadership representation and participation at managing board, running of project and community implication of female and male in working together for democracy and respect for women rights in ongoing debate.
What has been your hardest struggle so far, and how did you get over it?
The hardest struggle to rebuild new leadership and influence culture of democracy and respect for human rights in a fragile and unstable country is lack of local authority interest in the future of young people. Rebuild new thinking and perception of leadership is key to how we get there. Community leadership must be driven by the wish to develop and lead people to build their own dignified living.
What is the biggest challenge you currently face?
Community organization is not well-funded in my country. Due to poverty levels, even members within the community have difficulty to support certain initiatives. This situation left us with loosing human resources who want to have better life beyond our resource center for the young people. A constructive young people dialogue with local authority represents a challenge because young people have more moral questions to ask than old one. This leaves most of the activities organize by the structure have limited support from authorities.
What has been your biggest surprise on this journey so far?
the unwillingness of the authorities to provide young people with better environment to participate in the development of the country.
What keeps you going and give you inspiration in your work? What gives you hope?
My hope is find in the eyes of every person, the need to support vulnerable people get justice and respect.
If you could travel back in time, what advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t spend your time and energy to excuses but join others initiative that build nation and young people role for development and social justice.
What words of encouragement would you give to women, children, minorities, and other dis-empowered groups when they are facing rejection because of the prevailing cultural norm?
The rejection (physique and moral) must be energy to our hope and aspiration for better tomorrow. Rejection is a means to success.