The championing of support for minority voices was one of the key messages I took from the summit. Sir Bob hailed the next generation as the key to solving global issues, while Denise Young Smith impressed the need for young people to have a role model. They certainly hit the nail on the head. Having access to this support combined with sheer dogged determination lead me to the successes I have achieved so far. Mentoring has made a real difference to me so I was thrilled to hear these inspirational voices talk about the value mentoring can add to someone’s life.I now work with the groups that supported me to encourage others to achieve their aspirations, by running educational workshops and coordinating University advice days.
At the summit, Ousmane Ba, the founder of The Girl Child Project discussed his activism on feminist issues. He began when he was just nine years old. If a boy as young as this has aspirations to make a difference anyone can lend a hand to support someone that needs it. Ousmane addressed the audience with “It’s simple: educate a girl and you educate a whole community!” I loved this and took it to mean that by helping just one person, it will create a positive ripple effect. It was truly inspirational.
We also heard from the Astronaut, Ron Garan. He showed us an image he had photographed of planet earth from space. What struck us all was there were no borders and no barriers between one country and another. It is only the barriers and limitations that we impose on ourselves that hinder us from getting where we want to go. Or, prevent us from giving an outstretched hand to those across the globe that may seem far away.
It was a levelling moment. We all have so many more similarities than differences and, by making the most of opportunities, we can create our own achievements and help others to do the same in the process.
by Abdulkadir Elmi
Outreach Manager, Bright Education Centre