Its often said that our lives are lived in bubbles. In each of our bubbles we set the rules; we give specific things permission to access us. Usually, that's friends and family, celebrities, Beyoncé (because she's in a class of her own), some politics and work. In the day to day flow of our lives, we sometimes forget that there are billions of people out there who live very differently to what we're accustomed to and experience daily challenges that we could never even begin to fathom.
Last year, I spent 8 months in Nigeria and it was amazing. I enjoyed every minute of being with my family and friends, but something became pretty clear; my bubble was a contradiction. I was a Nigerian in Nigeria, trying to recreate my life in London.
I moved from the day to day grind of working and living in central London to life in Lagos, separated from the experiences of 80% of the Nigerian population. Most days, I sat in my air conditioned Uber, worked from my air conditioned co-working space, lived in my (brother's) really awesome air conditioned apartment, and ate out at the fanciest air conditioned restaurants in the city.
Despite the fact that I had moved back to my home country, I had successfully sequestered myself in the familiarity of Uber and Nespresso. But surely there is more to experience of life than that.
I started thinking about how easily that could be me, begging, on the other side of my car window in desperate need of the kindness of strangers. Without my parents, and their parents before them, I could've been in their position instead.
In response, I started mapping out potential courses of action based on the conversations I was having with people across Africa that had chosen to step out of their comfort zones and create programs that help millions of people get out of the poverty cycle. I resolved to create something that could help address some of the challenges being faced by those incredible organisations.
That's how Impact Africa began. This initiative is about empowering social entrepreneurs and NGO innovators in African countries, who are doing the work to develop our continent. To help as many of them as possible get the support they need, I need you.
Will you join me in this resolve to support organisations that are making a difference in African communities?
Giving women and girls living in poverty, access to sanitary products means they can stop missing days in school or opportunities for paid work that will help them in their individual fight to break the cycle of poverty in their generation.
Here are three ways you can get involved
1. give: they have the ideas, the "on-the-ground" connections and the know how, the social entrepreneurs and NGO innovators just need the money to grow their programs to make a bigger difference.
2. advise: some of these incredible innovators and social entrepreneurs are lacking expertise in some pretty pivotal areas. Could you let them into your bubble for a couple of hours a month so they can get the benefit of your professional experience?
3. create: there is no one else in the world like you; no one has the same combination of your insight, your talent, and your expertise. If you're passionate about solving the problem of Period poverty on a large scale, we can help you create something that will be truly impactful.
In November 2018, we're launching a diaspora focused Fight Against Period Poverty campaign to help ensure that all young women in Kenya have access to the sanitary products they need to continue going to school and work during their time of the month.
This isn't your typical donation drive. This is an event based, live and in full-colour fundraising and awareness campaign bringing art, education and empowerment together in a week of events, supported by The Africa Centre and Purpose.
I'd love to welcome you into a really cool and very impactful opportunity to help end Period Poverty in Kenya. If you'd like to be notified when the Fight Against Period Poverty campaign is ready to launch, please let me know.