I previously worked in education for 6 years as a qualified teacher, and fancied a new direction. The work Babbasa really intrigued and inspired me, and I knew straight away I wanted to be a part of this journey.
My role is very people-centred, which I really enjoy as building new relationships is important to me. I meet with clients and discuss options of how we can help make their companies more inclusive and culturally competent. This includes delivering training from our four “Bridging the Gap” modules and providing advisory support on policies and other processes.
Focusing on ED&I is something I am extremely passionate about as I know what it can be like to not feel a sense of equity or opportunity within the workplace. As Training and Inclusion Manager, I have been fortunate to work with a range of clients both in the private and public sector.
Delivering Inclusive Policing with Confidence workshops for Avon & Somerset Constabulary as part of a multi-organisation initiative, has been particularly rewarding especially, as this is the first of its kind in the whole of the UK.
The last challenge I had to face was running for local councillor for last year for Eastville. I had to speak publicly for the first time and I remember my body trembling with nerves as I read my speech to a room full of local residents. After I was selected, I worked tirelessly with my co-candidate campaigning. I was supported by so many people including the deputy and mayor of Bristol. I had aspirations to work in the cabinet on education and improving representation in Bristol Schools. I was so close (I came third) to winning but did not quite have enough votes to win. I was devastated as I had put so much work in and pressure on myself, I felt like I let down so many people. I was super deflated and didn’t know what my purpose was.
Some of the most important lessons in life are learned through defeat and I therefore tried to see the positive side of things. A great woman once said (Aaliyah, RIP) “If at first you don’t succeed pick yourself up and try again” so I did that. I remained hopeful and positive that I would find a new purpose…AND I DID! Working for Babbasa has given me that as they share this vision I have always had.
That experience was not a waste of time because it provided me with transferable skills and a new level of confidence, because if I could do that I can do anything!
Babbasa’s core values, vision and diverse staff attracted me to joining the team. First of all this is the first time in my working life that I haven’t been the only person of colour! I can’t put into words how this feels. Secondly, everyone is very supportive and it feels like one big family. A highlight of mine has been attending all these cool events but especially meeting the young people we support. Engaging with these young people and hearing their aspirations honesty warms my heart, and I can’t wait to see them kill it in their fields! Working here has taught me of the importance of community – we all need each other to succeed.
I see my role growing and hopefully I’ll have my own team of trainers to work alongside me – like The Avengers but for ED&I! I would also like to be a mentor to a young person, I would love to share what I have learned over the years.
My advice to young people:
- Don’t let anyone knock your confidence – I used to be really shy and didn’t believe in myself for years.
- Never stop learning – you can really teach yourself anything.Whatever you put your mind to, with self-belief and support from someone who cares you can achieve anything!
- Create a vision board/wishlist – this can help you map out what you want out of life and it’s surprising how subconsciously you will tick off things one by one, if you work towards them.
We believe Bristol’s most marginalised deserve access to support at their own pace, have their voices heard, and have access to real work opportunities.
If you believe that too then get in touch!