Can you tell us about your background?
I have a rather mixed back ground in that I don’t think I can say that I come from one place/country. I grew up in Zimbabwe, so had a very exciting time with some of the most unusual pets imaginable (I’m a mad animal person!). I moved to New Zealand where I studied Business and Computers at Uni and started my own trading business.
I caught a Travel bug while over in London a few years ago and decided to pack up and move to China for a few months, which was amazing! When I ran out of money I then moved to London and have been here 3 years now…there is never a dull/boring moment to be had in this Melting Pot of a city.
Why did you move to London?
I moved to London to take advantage of the travel opportunities here. Travel around Europe is so much more accessible from London than it was in New Zealand and also I knew the job opportunities would help me gain the experience I need to get higher up the ladder given that there are so many more cultures to work with.
What’s the benefits of being active in the JCI London council?
Being involved in, not only the Local Chamber but also being allow an opinion in the National Board decisions. But for my role as Social Director I would say the biggest benefit is being able to develop other members who want to be involved and learn how to organise and host events. Giving them to the licence to be creative and empowering them which inspire confidence.
What was you biggest learning when you did JCI Presenter and JCI Trainer?
I thoroughly enjoyed both of these courses! In just those three days I learnt so much about myself and other people. Biggest lesson that has stayed with me is, if your speaking in front of people and you know what you want to say, but it doesn’t come out right or you make a mistake – it’s not usually noticeable by anyone but yourself so just carry on as if nothing was wrong. Words flow easierly if your talking about something your passionate about and believe in.
What projects are you involved in in JCI London 2011?
I’m involved in a project where we have invited our five twin cities (JCI in Copenhagen, Stockholm, Tallin, Paris and Berlin) to London for a weekend of British culture. This is one of the ways we encourage relationship building with our countries as we are international and we all have the same goals in mind for the our lives and saving the world.
Another really exciting project we’re doing this year is creating a brand new London Chamber from scratch. This will mean we have two JCI chambers in London, giving the members an opportunity to be involved and double the benefit we can provide to our communities.
Why do you think more people should join JCI?
It’s just such a fantastic opportunity to be active and develop your networks but also to help other people. For me personally, I joined because I wanted to meet new people like me that would make a difference in my life and learn the skills to be confidence as I knew I needed it but, after being in JCI for a few months I have a real passion to help other people make the most of their experiences and their lives. JCI has a really supportive membership base that are always more than willing to help and offer their advice.
What do you think make JCI different from other networking groups in London?
JCI is different because we have a wider focus which suits every one of our members, from community driven people to business driven people. There is always something out there which will interest everyone. We make a difference and we can see this with our Nothing but Nets Champaign where we have helped saved families in Africa from Malaria.
Who do you admire?
There are so many people I admire for all different reasons, though the first person that came to mind is a JCI member for her passion, her Just-Do it attitude and her drive to succeed with the same values as myself. She has achieved a lot in her JCI career and there is always a new challenge that she’s willing to take on. She’s such a supportive and encouraging person. For me, she’s one of those people I admire and would strive to have the same qualities, drivers and ambition and I which I am working on. This person was President of JCI London last year and will be President of JCI UK next year – Solveig Malvik.
What you biggest passion in life?
I have two passions in life and both equally important to me, one is travelling – I love exploring and experiencing different places and cultures, there is always such wonderful learning experiences to be had. The second passion for me is helping people make the most of their lives. The way the world has changed, has left a lot of people struggling for some purpose and direction in life. The reward for me is seeing how much happier people can be once they are doing what they are passionate about and making the most of what they have.
Categorised in: Charity
This post was written by Sarah Beckwith