My name is Nameya Jacobs, a 22-year-old unemployed Creative Brand Communications graduate. My friends would describe me as outgoing, enthusiastic, funny, opinionated, smart, kind, caring and conscious, (yes, I actually asked them and this is what they said, I’m not just tooting my own horn). I’m passionate about equal rights for all genders and races, so my hobbies are geared towards creating content online bringing awareness to these topics, whether that be writing about them on my blog, facilitating healthy debates about them on Instagram, and even short video rants on my story about how capitalism continues to fail us, and why we need to burn it to the ground. I haven’t been able to explore much of Bristol because of COVID, but something I love doing is going on walks with my mum to feed the ducks in Eastville Park when the sun makes an appearance.

Fortunately, none of the barriers I faced growing up were financial. My parents worked very hard to provide me with the best education and opportunities, so I was fortunate enough to have help both in and out of school when I needed it. I did struggle socially, though. I’ve always been able to get along with most people, but I was an only child up until I turned 20, so things like sharing and compromise didn’t come as easily to me as they seemed to come to my peers who had siblings from a young age. I was also very lonely, and made my friends my family, which put a lot of pressure on my friendships and relationships.

What motivated me to change was my need to grow. I’m constantly looking to do better and be better for myself and those around me, so I read up on personal growth from authors like Osho and Eckhart Tolle, made friends with people who pushed me to think outside of my circle of influence, and engaged in conversations where I wasn’t the centre of attention.

I heard about Babbasa from one of my mum’s friends who also does work in the community. I worked in the communications group and created graphics for Babbasa’s social media pages, (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn). I’ve worked as a social media manager and content creator before, so I didn’t necessarily learn anything new, but I did manage to make new friends and connections, which I am more than grateful for during such a lonely and uncertain time.

My motivation has been this pandemic. I wanted to make a difference in a field that interested me, and being a part of the Youth Ambassador program meant I was giving someone out there the chance to do what I do by putting them in contact with people that could hire them or give them insight into the industry they’re interested in. People of colour deserve a seat at the table, and I hope my working with Babbasa puts them in that position someday.

I’m excited to see what the future has in store for me. Through working with Babbasa I managed to land a job experience opportunity with Natracare for two weeks! I wouldn’t have known about the position otherwise, so I’m grateful to Babbasa for putting me in contact with them. One of my goals is to land a permanent position somewhere working as a content creator or social media manager. In the next six months I hope to have a job and be able to walk next to someone in a shop without a mask on. In a year, I’ll be living on my own or with a friend/partner, probably in Bristol or Bath, and climbing the ladder in whatever industry I’m working in. In five years? I have no idea, but whatever it is is beautiful, I know that for a fact.

If I had to give myself or any young person advice, it would be to start work experience as soon as you can and stick with it. Above all else, I think employers want to see someone who is both versatile and dedicated, so finding something you’re interested in and working at it consistently is what’s going to make a difference. (Also, start a skincare routine ASAP. Your skin will thank you.)