They are Inspiring and Supportive

TCFT has brought an abundance of amazing people into my life over the years, including the awesomeness who is Geraldine, who I met in Bournemouth back in 2016.  Geraldine is inspiring, incredibly knowledgeable and extremely experienced in the media field, as well as being caring, down to earth and very, very funny.  When I invited Geraldine to TCFT Croydon last year, she was more than willing to come and support, bringing her friend, Patricia, along with her.

I met Patricia for the first time that Sunday, but somehow, I managed to make a major impression on her.  Ever since then, she has been one of my biggest – and I mean biggest – champions.  She is genuinely one of the most supportive, kind and driven women I have ever met.  She is also a master networker, just like Geraldine.  It is that supportive nature and networking brain of hers that recommended me to become a scholar for the eiClub.

I was beyond shocked when I received the email, but extremely thankful for the opportunity.  I knew that it would be a blessing for me and provide me with the opportunity to not only expand my network, but continue to develop as a person.  I would probably say that the biggest honour was being named the first ei Khadija Saye Scholar, named after the amazingly, talented young woman who lost her life in the Grenfell Tower disaster and was one of the scholars who came before me – I really wish that I had gotten the chance to meet her.

Being a Khadija Saye Scholar opened the door to a wealth of opportunities this year and introduced me to a whole lot of wonderful, stellar people.  Julia immediately comes to mind, the force of nature behind ei and the queen of networking, who is also thoughtful, intelligent and most of all, has a very big heart .  Julia is an amazing conversationalist, with some of the best stories.  She is inclusive and caring, ensuring that no one is ever stood on their own and taking time to introduce you to others.  Throughout this year, Julia has made me feel nothing but welcome and supported, also asking me to read poetry at one of the trips away and present an award at the Comment Awards – both unique and great experiences.

The trips taken as part of Names Not Numbers, to the beautiful Waddesdon Manor and Oxford, were kind of surreal from me, but never failed to teach me a whole lot.  They were filled with great people, including Angela, Louise, Mr Gee, Simon, Mr Gee, Justine, Deborah, Steven, Shanice and so many more.  I’ve also loved getting to meet and speaking to other members of the Editorial Intelligence team, like Alice and Karen – they’re so funny.

I’ve met other beautiful, supportive individuals over suppers, like Kat, who I sat down with for great conversation over coffee.  I’ve learnt from truly talented veterans and legends in their fields at various events throughout the year, buying brilliant books along the way, like The Empathy Instinct by Peter Bazalgette, who personally signed it for me with his nickname after being majorly impressed by a question I asked (I was surprised too, I was simply speaking about what I know).

However, I think I’ve most enjoyed spending time with and developing friendships with fellow scholars, Mayur, Dami and Rae.  These are three brilliant young people, overflowing with talent and making a difference in the lives of young people in different ways.

Dami never fails to make me laugh, or make me smile with his bubbly energy – he is a master networker in his own light.  Rae is very easy to talk to and a fun presence to be around.  And I enjoyed spending plenty of time with Mayur during the weekend away at Oxford, engaging in conversations on a variety of subjects and having him by my side when I felt out of my depth.  Mayur also touched my heart majorly that weekend, when he had my back and gave me an unexpected gift – those little things mean the world to me.

I have already gained and learned so much during my time as a Khadija Saye Scholar, which has a whole lot to do with the people I have met.  I feel beyond blessed to have met them and I look forward to developing the connections in the new year and beyond.  To my champions and supporters, Patricia and Geraldine, you are the most amazing and wonderful women.  I love you all.


My God is Big

“My God is big / So strong so mighty”

These are the first lines from my song right now, BIG by the Planetshakers (although I prefer the version by the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International), which was introduced to me by Madison Mission Seventh-day Adventist Church.  This is an uplifting, joyful song with few lyrics, but a powerful message that speaks to me in so many ways right now.

Of course, it goes without saying that “My God is good / He’s so good to me”, as I serve an awesome God who is good to me all the time and I will never get tired of saying that, because I’m so unworthy of all of the blessings He bestows upon me.  However, my favourite part of the song are the lyrics, “My God’s plan for me / Goes beyond my wildest dreams”, because all He’s got in store for me is more than I can even imagine in my right now.

I just need to testify a little bit, because my God is doing the most amazing things in my life and He is setting His amazing plan for me into action, without me even showing Him the level of gratitude He deserves.  Yes, I’m more than thankful for everything my God does, but I do not always give Him enough credit or have the level of faith in Him that I should have.  Too often when things are going wrong, I get upset and worry, forgetting about what God has done time and time again.  Instead, I should be remembering that His timing is perfect and He will always come through for me.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been fretting about the launch of my short film to empower youth voice, thinking it won’t happen or it will have to be prolonged again or that people wouldn’t show interest in coming.  Things got down to the wire, but God made sure I that I got a great location so I could have my launch before the end of the year and He’s enabled a number of people to help me, particularly through promotion.  The level of support I’ve received as been amazing and really warmed my heart, and I believe the turn out for next week will better than I could even imagine.

I was worried for a while, even though I knew that I didn’t need to be, because God has got my back.  I know that through Him, this launch is going to be special and act as the start of something that will change the lives of young people, which I believe is His calling for me.

God has shown his goodness and his wonderful mercies in other ways this week, but I know that I need to spend a whole lot more time with Him in prayer before I make some of my other decisions going forward.  For now, all I have to do is live in faith and trust in my Heavenly Father, because “there’s nothing my God cannot do”.

Deserving of All My Praise

I just need to take some time right now and praise my awesome, amazing God, because He deserves all my thanks, adoration and praise.

I can see my God working in my life right now in so many ways and there are no words that can do Him justice or even express just how grateful I am.

I’ve said time and time again that my God always comes through for me, delivering what exactly what I need at exactly the right time.  And you know what, He’s done it again.

I’m so glad that I serve a God who always has my back, because I don’t know where I would be without Him, especially in my physically and emotionally tired states.  There have been many times when I’ve simply wanted to give up, but God wouldn’t let me and He never gave up on my sorry self.

My God is allowing me to move forward with my ventures in ways I never even imagined and He’s somehow placed the right people in my life.  He’s got people helping me in various ways, which is doing so much for me right now, I can’t even tell you.

I love my God so, so much and it means everything to know that He loves me, which is why He wants nothing but the best for me.  I just hope that I can make Him proud and become the person He has intended for me to be, because that is the least that He deserves.  I’m excited to see what future blessings He has in store.