Our Stories

OUR PARTICIPANTS

Since being founded in 2013, we have supported over 2,200 young people with their professional aspirations!

 

The young people who have graduated from our programmes are called ‘Babbasa Trailblazers’ because they use their skills, knowledge, and platforms to make a difference in their communities and inspire others.

 

Read their stories in their words below!

 

 

 

Bobby’s Story

Bobby’s Story

  My name's Bobby Hopkins and I'm 20. I currently work part time as a Waiter at a pub called The Farmers Arms, also part-time I teach kickboxing as a Senior martial arts instructor to ages through 4-6 year old’s all the way through to adults and ladies classes....

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Tamelia’s Story

Tamelia’s Story

  My name's Tamelia Smith and I'm 18 years old. Some of my favourite things to do include listening to music and watching movies. I currently work a part time retail job after leaving college in the first half of the year, but my real interests lie in media and...

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Will’s Story

Will’s Story

My name is Will and I am 23. My aspirations and goals are to hopefully find a creative career path. I am willing to try many different industries and forms of work until I really decide, in the meantime I just want to get as much experience as possible and meet as...

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Hannah’s Story

Hannah’s Story

My name's Hannah Smith and I'm 21. I spend all my spare time watching Netflix and looking for new series to watch! I also enjoy spending time with my friends on the weekends and going out for drinks. My aspirations for the future are driven by my career, I want to...

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AZ’s Support Story

AZ’s Support Story

  When AZ* was referred to Babbasa’s Support Programme, they reported significant experiences of social anxiety. His guardians knew he...

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Rasheed’s Mentoring Story

Rasheed’s Mentoring Story

Me, my journey with Babassa and where I am today.   My name is Rasheed, and I am 23 years old. I love watching television with a good romance plot – I feel like life can sometimes be unpredictable and difficult, so I enjoy the predictability and the warmth of a...

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Esther’s Mentoring Story

Esther’s Mentoring Story

  My name is Esther and I’m 23 years old. Other than binge watching films, I’ve recently started cooking a lot more and trying new recipes. It’s become therapeutic, I also enjoy swimming.My end goal is to become a successful and established film producer.  But...

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Imani’s Story

Imani’s Story

  My name is Imani Grant and I'm 19 years old. My friends would describe me as bubbly, fun-loving, gregarious, caring, considerate and meticulous. I enjoy going to museums/art galleries, taking part in creative workshops and picnicking with friends. I'm really...

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Mugi’s Story

Mugi’s Story

  My name is Collines Mugisha and people who know me would say I'm relaxed, friendly, approachable, confident, intelligent, Creative innovative, hard working, kind generous, a good observer, and business minded. I love seeing the creativeness around the city and...

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Hanad’s Story

Hanad’s Story

    My name is Hanad Mohamed. I’m 17 years old. My friends would describe me as cheerful and confident. I enjoy basketball and am heavily invested in History. I love the m1 bus ride, it’s hardly talked about but it’s underrated, the views are spectacular. I...

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Becca’s Story

Becca’s Story

My name is Rebecca Hurford and I am 21.  My hobbies are photography and filmmaking.  One of the barriers I have faced growing up is with mental health. I have had an ongoing battle with anxiety, leading me to not always be able to partake in opportunities that I wish...

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Dami’s Story

Dami’s Story

  My name is Oluwadamilola Okeyoyin and I'm 25 years old.  My friends would describe me as fun, loyal and talented. I enjoy reading, traveling and cooking. I've always wished there were more for BAME students like me and I wish there was no bias in getting jobs...

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Anna’s Story

Anna’s Story

My name is Anna Richardson and I’m 22 years old. I haven’t been up to too much during lockdown but I usually enjoy live music and art, volunteering and some part time work online. One of my most significant barriers growing up was being a mixed-race person in a...

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Millie’s Story

Millie’s Story

My name is Millie Shoebridge and I'm 24 years old. My hobbies are radio presenting and production, I volunteer for a few different radio stations and I used to host a podcast, basically I love chatting. I read a lot of books and magazines, a mixture of political...

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Suad’s Story

Suad’s Story

My name is Suad. I'm 17 years old. My Friends describe me as approachable, well-organized, and dependable. My key interests would be community involvement and reading. The diverse culture, as well as the variety of places to visit, are two of my favourite aspects of...

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Danielle’s Story

Danielle’s Story

  My name is Danielle and I'm 23 years old. I love to play the guitar, bake, cook and learn languages. I really enjoy chilling in green spaces in Bristol, visiting different music venues and going to the climbing gym. I faced a lot of bullying in school and even...

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Nameya’s Story

Nameya’s Story

  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...

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Ruth’s Mentoring Story

Ruth’s Mentoring Story

    Having recently secured a job in the pharmaceutical industry, Ruth reflects on the impact of Babbasa's mentoring scheme in helping her achieve her goals.   My name is  Ruth Gbao and I’m 17 years old. At the moment I’m in my last year of sixth form...

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Lashawn’s Mentoring Story

Lashawn’s Mentoring Story

    Having recently secured a job as a Production Management Assistant at the BBC, Lashawn reflects on the impact of Babbasa's mentoring scheme in helping her achieve her goals. My name is Lashawn and I am 20 years old. I first heard of Babbasa through a...

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Keenan’s Story

Keenan’s Story

    My name’s Keenan Lawrence and I’m 23. For me, I’ve always had an expectation for myself that has been holding me accountable. Sometimes I put pressure on myself to get things moving as quickly as possible. But creating foundations for myself has been...

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Grace’s Story

Grace’s Story

Grace discusses her experiences as a young creative working with PAPER Arts, and the influence of Babbasa's mentors My name's Grace Sodzi and I'm 23. I was a part of their first Mentoring Club, and I found their support so helpful in pursuing my creative passions. At...

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Kaden’s Story

Kaden’s Story

My name’s Kaden Gardener and at the moment I am creating my video content while looking for paid work and opportunities within the media industry, specifically within video editing. In my spare time I like to listen to and create music, play video games and hanging...

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Leila’s Story

Leila’s Story

    Leila reflects on her time as a Youth Ambassador working on the City of Change Campaign:   While doing the campaign I noticed how it kept my head above water and helped me reflect on my own life so much because I was thinking about other people. It offered me a...

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Ella’s Story

Ella’s Story

 Ella discusses her time as a Youth Ambassador and the impact of City of Change: ​I find that often when communicating with large organisations and businesses, young people are invited to the table to offer "a younger perspective" (often for free), but the...

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Sarah’s Story

Sarah’s Story

  Reflecting on my Experiences as a Youth Ambassador During COVID-19 Written by: Sarah Anisah Nabi  When I initially signed up as a Youth Ambassador with Babbasa, I had no idea what to expect. I knew the project that we’d be working on was to create workplace...

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Rasheed’s Story

Rasheed’s Story

  My name is Rasheed I am 23. My friends would describe me as funny, a typical Scorpio and loving. I enjoy creative writing, song writing, story writing and I like to play the piano. I am passionate about the arts and advocacy work. I enjoy walking, going to the...

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Esther’s Story

Esther’s Story

  My name is Esther and I'm 23 years old. I’m currently working. My hobbies are binge watching Netflix series and going to the cinema and my goal is become a successful film producer. The last challenge I had to overcome was pitching an idea to a group of...

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Lashawn’s Story

Lashawn’s Story

  My name is Lashawn Binns, I am 20 years old and at the moment I am looking to gain more experience in the TV/Film industry as well as job that will further my career in this industry. Some of my hobbies include reading, I have always loved a good fantasy book,...

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Hamza’s story

Hamza’s story

"My name is Hamza. I was born and raised in Bristol.  I am the oldest of 3 siblings from a Pakistani background. I am seen as hard-working, resilient and organised by the people I work with. At the start of Year 5 I was underperforming in Mathematics until my teacher,...

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Theresa’s story

Theresa’s story

  "I'm Theresa and I’ve grown up in the UK, my parents are from Ghana and I go there occasionally to see family, which I love. I would say I’m fairly confident and very friendly, but I’m sure my friends would most definitely describe me as dramatic because I love...

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Trailblazer – Max: My Story

Trailblazer – Max: My Story

"I’ve lived in Bristol for as long as I can remember. I was born in Hackney, but moved here as a baby. All of my pride is in Bristol. My primary passion is music. I’ve been drumming since year 7. At school they had one small room with a drum kit, an amp and a window....

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Trailblazer – Yesmain: My Story

Trailblazer – Yesmain: My Story

“I'm Yesmain and I would say those close to me would say I’m assertive, passionate, and honest.  Spending time in isolation either listening to music, podcasts or language-orientated audio books is therapeutic and the best way to spend any free time I have.   Growing...

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Trailblazer  – Nehanda: My Story

Trailblazer – Nehanda: My Story

"I was born in Bristol and the I'm the youngest of 3 children, with two brothers. Being the only girl can be annoying at times but I guess I've learnt to deal with it. Most people would describe me as being quite weird and dramatic, but others would say I'm quite...

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Trailblazer – Yasmin: My Story

Trailblazer – Yasmin: My Story

I am Yasmin Mohammed, a 24-year-old currently living in Bristol. I was born and raised here and studied right through to college-level education. I am the youngest of 5 brothers and I am the only girl. It was at a young stage in my life when I knew I wanted to work in...

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Trailblazer: Osob – My First Media Role

Trailblazer: Osob – My First Media Role

  “I don’t like to say it’s a challenge, and I tend to see it as more of a blessing but I come from a big family of 12 siblings and with a condition that has required multiple surgeries. Babbasa arranged work experience for me with the editor of Bristol 24/7....

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Trailblazer: Cameron – My Story

Trailblazer: Cameron – My Story

“When I was growing up, my home life was full of abuse and I was continually faced with fear, pain, and hostility. I faced a lot of violence and racial abuse at school as well, and before long, I was kicked out, and later arrested for possessing a knife. I had reached...

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Youth Ambassador: Yasmin – The Importance of Key Workers

Youth Ambassador: Yasmin – The Importance of Key Workers

Key workers are a lifeline to our country during coronavirus  A key worker is someone in the public sector who provides care to others or performs another vital function to provide support or services to others (such as working in supermarkets or transport). As a...

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Youth Ambassador: Rosie – Out of Crisis Comes Creativity

Youth Ambassador: Rosie – Out of Crisis Comes Creativity

"Things are weird right now, aren’t they? The sun is shining, but no one is out. Everyone is in quarantine, self-isolating, or simply shut up in their houses awaiting news of where we can and can’t go. So, in these unusual times where we can’t enjoy a trip to the pub...

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Youth Ambassador: Rosie – My Experience So Far

Youth Ambassador: Rosie – My Experience So Far

"My experience so far as a Youth Ambassador (YA) has been nothing but positive. I found out about the Challenge programme as part of the ‘Our Bristol, Our World’ conference, ran by Babbasa’s previous YA’s in mid-October. The aim of the conference was to give young...

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Trailblazer: Stephen – The City Leadership Programme

Trailblazer: Stephen – The City Leadership Programme

Babbasa Trailblazer, Stephen talks through his experience of being a part of the City Leadership programme. The programme supports highly aspirational young people from less advantaged backgrounds by giving them the tools they need to become leaders of the future....

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Trailblazer: Amy – The City Leadership Programme

Trailblazer: Amy – The City Leadership Programme

Babbasa Trailblazer, Amy talks through her experience of being a part of the City Leadership programme. The programme supports highly aspirational young people from less advantaged backgrounds by giving them the tools they need to become leaders of the future. It's an...

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Trailblazer: Sumayo – My First Steps in Enterprise

Trailblazer: Sumayo – My First Steps in Enterprise

“I joined the Babbasa Level 2 Enterprise course as a secondary school leaver, with a clear idea that I wanted to pursue my own business either in fashion or with food, but lacked the skills needed to do it. Babbasa was there to support me as a learner. During the...

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Trailblazer: Aabbi – The Value of a Mentor

Trailblazer: Aabbi – The Value of a Mentor

"I went to a school where I felt a lack of encouragement for ethnic minorities to study academically and creatively challenging subjects. Despite feeling discouraged, with the support of Babbasa I got a professional mentor who supported me to complete my A-levels and...

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Trailblazer: Haji – My Story

Trailblazer: Haji – My Story

Haji has been on an incredible journey so far. After migrating to Bristol from Nigeria, he spent his childhood living in a single-parent, low-income household with his siblings, aspiring to become a successful professional. Haji came to one of Babbasa's first-ever Ask...

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Trailblazer: Daniella – My Story

Trailblazer: Daniella – My Story

'   I was born in London, and I spent most of my early life moving in and out of Britain from England to Barbados. I was in the middle of a custody battle between my parents, and all the moves meant that I didn’t have a normal, average upbringing. Without going...

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Trailblazer: Zainab – My Story

Trailblazer: Zainab – My Story

I  My name’s Zainab, I am currently a Babbasa Trailblazer and have been with Babbasa for a number of years. I was originally born in London born into a first-generation Pakistani family but have lived in Bristol for the majority of my life and would say I love...

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Trailblazer: Hersi – My Story

Trailblazer: Hersi – My Story

I moved from London to Bristol in 2004 and I’ve lived here ever since. I know Bristol like the back of my hand. My family are originally from Somaliland, and Bristol has a thriving Somali community which is a lot closer than that of London because of how big London...

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Trailblazer: Qazzally – My Story

Trailblazer: Qazzally – My Story

I’m from Bristol, but I was born in London but grew up in Bristol. Both my parents came to England as refugees of the Somali civil war. I am 1 of 6 children in the family I keep it simple with my hobbies. I love watching sports like basketball and playing them as...

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Trailblazer: Olumide – My Story

Trailblazer: Olumide – My Story

Hi, I’m Olumide. I grew up in Berkshire, but I also lived in Nigeria for 3 years from 13 to 16. I came back to England for 6th form and finally came to Bristol to go to university. My friends would describe me as being joyful, creative, and sociable. I’m going into my...

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Trailblazer: Tyreke – My Story

Trailblazer: Tyreke – My Story

Hi, I’m Tyreke. I’m originally from Bristol. My family and friends would say I’m funny, wise when it comes to serious topics, confident, and dependable. I’ve finished college, and I’m currently taking a gap year. I’m using this time to experiment by doing different...

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Trailblazer: Jeril – My Story

Trailblazer: Jeril – My Story

Hi, I’m Jeril, and I’m a social media and marketing manager from Bristol. At the moment, I’m studying Business Management at UWE. I was born in South India, and spent a couple of my early years in Oman. I came to the UK when I was 4, and lived here for about 9 years....

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Trailblazer: Beatriz – My Story

Trailblazer: Beatriz – My Story

I moved to Bristol from Brazil when I was 6 years old with my parents and older sister. Since then we have had 2 additions to our family, my little brother and our pet hamster. I would describe myself as impulsive, warm and understanding, although my friends and...

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Trailblazer: Hari – My Story

Trailblazer: Hari – My Story

Hari Ramakrishnan (also known as Pariah Khan) is currently touring his one-man-show, An Indian Abroad, which he stars in, writes and produces. Having lived in multiple countries, the show plays on Hari’s experiences of moving to Britain as an Indian, and India as a...

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Trailblazer: Farnaz – My Story

Trailblazer: Farnaz – My Story

Farnaz became a Babbasa Youth Ambassador in 2019 and had big ambitions to transition from admin work to a career in TV. Three months later, she found herself working for an award-winning production company, Icon Films - something which she said has changed her life....

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Trailblazer: Mo – My Story

Trailblazer: Mo – My Story

I migrated to Bristol at the age of 5 to escape civil war and the harsh environment of a broken country. Irrespective of this, I focus on that which I’m in control of and give no time to the things that limit me. I have always been driven towards business and consider...

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Trailblazer: Jasmine – My Story

Trailblazer: Jasmine – My Story

Hi, I’m Jasmine Thompson. I’m a creative, so creating art ALL the time. I’m quite chilled out, and very focused on what I want to do. I'm now twenty-four and based in Bristol as an illustrator and designer. Growing up, I lived in a really small city that didn’t have a...

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Trailblazer: Ismail – My Story

Trailblazer: Ismail – My Story

I grew up always moving. I was born in Italy, then later moved to England at the age of 11. Because of my diverse upbringing, I am able to speak multiple languages. I speak English, Arabic and Italian. My life in Italy if compared to my life in England is...

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Trailblazer: Whiz – My Story

Trailblazer: Whiz – My Story

Both my parents are from Nigeria. My village in Nigeria gave me my name, Fumen. That means 'wisdom', which is where Whiz comes from. I went there for the first time at age 6 and learned the language that I use now called Hausa. Being born in London and going to...

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Trailblazer: Haneen – My Story

Trailblazer: Haneen – My Story

Hi, I’m Haneen, I’m 16. I have 3 siblings. My friends would describe me as funny, a good listener and that I give great advice! My parents would say that I’m loud, a bit naughty, but nice as well. I like playing sports, especially football. And I really like baking. I...

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Trailblazer: Marissa – My Story

Trailblazer: Marissa – My Story

Hi, I’m Marissa and I’m a Graphic Designer from Bristol. I think that my friends and family would describe me as outgoing, motivated, and creative. I’ve spent the last 3 years in Birmingham studying Graphic Communication at Birmingham City University. I loved being a...

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Trailblazer: Kelly – My Story

Trailblazer: Kelly – My Story

Hi, I’m Kelly, originally from London. My friends and family see me as funny and caring, although a little bit argumentative. I came to Bristol to study Law, but I’m looking for a career in TV - behind the camera, definitely behind, ideally a scriptwriter or producer....

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Trailblazer: Myles – My Story

Trailblazer: Myles – My Story

"My name is Myles, and I’m 26 years old now. In school I wasn’t interested in any of the subjects so left with no GCSEs which made it difficult to find a job.  I didn’t know what I wanted to do after I left school, but one day  I just bought a camera and started...

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Trailblazer: Faduma – My Story

Trailblazer: Faduma – My Story

"I came here when I was six, from Somalia. I’m the oldest of eight siblings. I’m seen as honest, motivated and bold, although my little siblings think I’m bossy! When I moved here I didn’t know the language. I learnt everything from watching TV, it’s why I love it, it...

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