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 everything the city has to offer!

I am currently a freelance henna artist and studying towards my master’s degree in International Real Estate and Planning at UCL with the aim to become a surveyor.

I have a few different interests ranging from henna art, politics, economics, philosophy and real estate.

I first came to Babbasa when I was 15 for an enterprise competition. I heard about them through MSSSP, which was an organization dedicated to improving the GCSE scores of individuals from ethnic minority backgrounds.

I had an opportunity to pitch an enterprise idea to Babbasa as part of the competition, and won £1,500 to start a youth club, which I ran during my time at sixth form.

I loved being involved with Babbasa. The atmosphere and overall team spirit lead me to my involvement as a Youth Ambassador where I worked on a multitude of projects; most notably Ask about me and Empowered, which were amazing!

Babbasa gives you a lot of responsibility from day one, and it’s a variety of experiences that you get involved with, not just being stuck in the office.

Through Babbasa I have been involved in a variety of networking events, gained a professional mentor, was part of the Mayoral Campaign,
had the opportunity to be on Ujima radio etc.

I just wanted to delve into Babbasa’s mentorship scheme, which I would thoroughly promote to any young person.

I had originally wanted to become a Lawyer and very fortunate to be paired up with Susan Heenan who was my professional mentor.

She was incredibly supportive in every capacity, she took me to a variety of law events, explained a load of concepts, went through my
personal statement and genuinely went above and beyond her role as a mentor!

I feel like Babbasa hasn’t just helped me in one sphere, it’s truly an organization which really focuses on the holistic development of its young people.

They really push you to work outside your comfort zone, whilst also providing you with enough support to succeed.

Therefore, my advice to young people would be to really utilize any opportunities provided to you, whether big or small. Always aim to improve and stay optimistic through any adverse situations.