Voices of Youth Inspire! "We are never leaders of tomorrow, but of today."
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Your name: Courage Nyamhunga
Your age: 23
Where are you originally from and where do you currently live?
I come from Zimbabwe and I live in Harare which is the capital city.
According your business card – what is your job title?
I am a Child Protection Advocate.
And how does that compare with what you wanted to do when you were 10 years old?
When I was ten I always wanted to be a lawyer. My father always inspired me, but here I am working on promoting the rights of children.
Give us 5 words or phrases that describe your typical work day.
Energetic, interesting, problem-solving, challenges as opportunities to learn.
In a nutshell, how did you get to where you are right now? Name some of the most important milestones.
For me to be an intern with UNICEF Zimbabwe, I had to have so much passion for children's rights and their welfare. It also took an outstanding and a certain qualification. I would also say volunteering to see change in my close communities and seeing children achieve their goals. It had to take courage and that eye that looks beyond obstacles and keeps the resilient spirit. In essence, what made me know I was interested in children’s rights was the fact that I positively used my position as the chair-man of the Legal Aid Clinic at the University of Zimbabwe, Faculty of Law.
What was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome to get to your current position and how did it help you to grow as a person?
The biggest challenge that I faced was deciding which area of human rights development I wanted to specialize in. My passion was with children, yet my family wanted me to pursue business law so there was a conflict of interest with my parents. However, eventually they had to let me pursue what I would enjoy, even though there is less remuneration. I do enjoy what I do and I am not apologetic about it. I learnt a lot from that firm decision that I took, and no matter what comes your way, if you vividly imagine what you want to be, then it will inevitably come to pass.
What are the top three things someone needs to excel in your field?
Passion, service above self, and focus.
What do you think is the MOST important thing governments and/or companies can do to help young people get started in their careers?
I have a firm conviction that governments need to be accountable for their actions and stop all the rhetoric about youth empowerment and development. They must honor what they would have said they will do. They also need to believe in our potential. We are never leaders of tomorrow, but of today. The old approach to youth inclusion should come to an end.
On a lighter note, tell us about the strangest day you’ve ever had at work or the strangest thing you had to do?
We all do strange things all day, and I live each day as if it is my last. My superiors always say “ask yourself each day, what value have I added to this organization?” Well one strange thing I had to do one day was wave at the President's (Robert Mugabe) motorcade when he came to my University campus to officially open the new Computer Science Center.
Some words to youth out there: What advice can you give them when chasing their dream position?
They should know that a successful life is like a string of coincidences that gathered significance and became miracles. They should take that risk and venture into new horizons.