Many people ask me what the Young Eye is? How is it a foundation? Why is it a podcast? Why have you launched the Young and Restless? Where are you going with all this? All good questions, that I didn’t have answers to three years ago, I was simply doing my best and letting the journey help me piece it together. That is exactly what happened! After years of persistent efforts to comprehend what truly works, I discovered an alignment—understanding how all initiatives complement and synergize with each other to ensure the achievement of all missions!
But, how was this alignment achieved? A famous quote from “Built to Last – successful habits of visionary companies” by Jim Collins says “…learn to adopt the genius of AND and not the tyranny of OR..” Directly translating to the fact that visionary companies have built organizations by not confining themselves to doing either one thing or the other, but adopting a strategy for their different initiatives to work together.
This is the story of the three arms of the Young Eye Initiative.
The Young Eye Initiative
The Young Eye Initiative is an initiative that represents the needs, interests and aspirations of young people. I define it as a perspective of fresh, innovative and contemporary approaches to tackling challenges or developing solutions that resonate with and benefit young people.
Young Eye Foundation
The Young Eye Foundation, my first child, a non-profit organization whose mission is to improve the livelihood of children through early childhood care and education and marginalized youth. Launched in 2019, but actually discovered in 2021.
The early childhood care and education arm has a flagship project called Homeland Project, adopted from our first ever project in 2019. This arm focuses on infrastructure development of schools both interior and exterior, scholastic material donations to schools and teacher training on the effective use of limited resources. A blog on our most recent project: Adopting a School in Uganda.
The marginalized youth arm of the foundation works with youth in juvenile detention centers in Uganda. Over the past two years the focus shifted from donation of resources to the home, to skill building programs for the youth in the detention centers. With support from partners and the matron of the home – Naguru Remand Home, we have been able to run two successful skill building programs in hair braiding and nail dressing.
However, as you can imagine financing these projects, needs a flow of finances and that is where the Young Eye Foundation and Young and Restless came in as independent organizations to support the work the foundation does whilst driving their own agendas.
Young Eye International
The Young Eye International did not start off as a podcast as I often say, launched in 2020, as just the Young Eye as a television show with my friends and I, and then going through multiple phases of change and iterations that did have us questioning the viability of the this product. Following a brief hiatus from April to July this year, I took the opportunity to reevaluate the tasks at hand and strategize the most effective approach to accomplish our initial mission.
The mission of the podcast now is to create a socially connected world by diving deep into the captivating stories, ideas, and experiences that shape our world, providing listeners and viewers with fresh perspectives and a renewed sense of curiosity.
Since launching the new variation of the podcast in July 2023, it has seen tremendous growth with its first eight episodes, and now positioning itself to facilitate a more sustainable future and testing the waters of the podcast realm.
Young & Restless
The latest edition to the Young Eye Initiative, Young and Restless, recently launched on 18th November 2023, at the University of Waterloo in Canada. Honestly, this was not meant to become an independent organization under the initiative, it was supposed to be the theme of the one time event we were planning. After careful consideration and actually realizing its potential with feedback from our target audience and partners, it became apparent that there is a gap we need to fill and creating this was necessary.
Young and Restless, still early in it’s days, but as it is defined now; it is a networking, coaching and event focused group that aims to bring together young people from diverse backgrounds that are restless with things, ideas and beliefs they are passionate about.
I will be writing a recap blog of how we planned and executed our first event!
It definitely is not easy managing all three of the arms, but that is why we have have great teams passionate about the causes each of these arms do in hopes that we do achieve the goals of each arm. As we grow and learn, we are grateful for the journey we are on and take it with positivity despite it’s challenges, because if we believe in what we are doing, then we can in whatever capacity create impact and inspire!