Happy New Year to all my lovely readers. It's hard to believe that we are over 2 months in!
It's International Womens' Day today and I'm super excited to be sharing this post with you. This is a day set aside to show respect, appreciation & love towards women, and also to celebrate our economic, political & social achievements. The theme this year is "Make it Happen".
Earlier in the year, I gathered 11 women who inspire and I admire; for a calendar girl photoshoot wearing some of our WF scarfs. These are young (under 30) godly women, striving to be the best at what they do, and 'leaning in' to life in general - taking advantage of the professional & personal opportunities that come along.
Amongst these women are first class lawyers, hospital pharmacists, business owners, journalists, chemical engineers and more; and that's just their job titles. Multidimensional as they come, January's girl is a wife gunning to be Secretary General of the United Nations and I'm absolutely rooting for her. February's told me when we were 17 that she would buy a property by the age of 25, pleased to say that she moved into her own apartment last month! (few months short of her 25th). Then there's November's who started up what is easily the best read for black and mixed race women right now (http://www.blackballad.co.uk), May's who runs a dynamic Afro Caribbean hair salon(Jadoy), June's whose eclectic lipstick brand(MDMFlow) has been featured in the Stylist and other glossy pages, and April's who is getting set to launch her body care range. It's not hard to see that these women are Making it Happen, doing what they love! I for one, am most inspired and proud to have them in my network.
I make the 12th, for the sheer purpose of not being left out lol and also assuming that what I do, inspires someone to discover their gifts and develop it.
Here we are, answering 5 little questions and giving our best shot at being supermodels!
JANUARY - Ola Owojori, 28 - @something_borrowed1
Describe yourself in 3 words: Passionate, Loyal, Weird
What do you do: Policy and Projects Officer - work on the Mayor of London's Health strategy/policy. I'm also studying part time for a Masters in Conflict, Security and Development.
What's your dream job: Ultimately a conflict resolution and civil war specialist/expert. Insurgencies such as Boko Haram and ISIS as well as African civil wars and the war on terror are all areas that I am extremely passionate about.
Favourite thing to do when not working: Watch web series!
Favourite place to hang out in London: I don't have one, I'm an explorer :)
FEBRUARY - Chrystel Kayibi, 24 - @kayibiz
Describe yourself in 3 words: Resilient, Motivated, Fun-loving.
What do you do: I am a corporate finance lawyer.
What's your dream job: Being a lawyer for a luxury good company or a company in Africa.
Favourite thing to do when not working: Travelling.
Favourite place to hang out in London: A good shisha spot.
MARCH - Jasmine Boadi, 23 - @afiaandjay
Describe yourself in 3 words: Dreamer, Composed, Funny.
What do you do: I am currently studying at a law school with plans to start training as a commercial solicitor. I also work as a freelance writer in my spare time, and I run my own website on fashion and the Millenial experience at www.afiaandjay.com
What's your dream job: I've always loved having lots to do, so my dream would be to work as a lawyer but also contribute written pieces to noted publications, build up my website, do some fashion styling/designing, and write a book.
Favourite thing to do when not working: I love to trawl through fashion and style blogs for inspiration and ideas.
Favourite place to hang out in London: Islington's my home, so I love either walking around Angel/Upper street or being wrapped up indoors with snacks and Netflix!
APRIL - Sayo, 28 - @sayoodu
Describe yourself in 3 words: Christian, Foodie, Resilient.
What do you do: I am a process Engineer, currently working in the O&G industry, and an aspiring entrepreneur making & selling natural hair & beauty products.
What's your dream job: The CEO & founder of various companies (including a cosmetic company).
Favourite thing to do when not working: I love travelling, visiting beautiful places, spending meaningful time with friends, and just staying at home when I can!
Favourite place to hang out in London: My house!
MAY - Doyin Afolabi, 23 - @jadoy, @dee_sola
Describe yourself in 3 words: Creative, Bubbly, Calculative.
What do you do: I'm a self employed hairstylist.
What's your dream job: To run a very efficient salon - Jadoy Hair and overall be the best entrepreneur that I can be.
Favourite thing to do when not working: I enjoy cooking/baking. Also looking up a variety of foods to get inspiration for my next meal.
Favourite place to hang out in London: I generally enjoy eating out. Any cuisine is good for me as long as it's good food.
JUNE - Florence Adepoju, 24 - @mdmflow
Describe yourself in 3 words: Passionate, Inquisitive, Determined
What do you do: I run the coolest lipstick company around, according to Sunday Times Style. I'm the founder of MDMflow, a beauty brand that is very current.
What's your dream job: Creative Director of Tom Ford beauty as well as running MDMflow.
Favourite thing to do when not working: Reading/having brunch with good friends
Favourite place to hang out in London: Shoreditch
JULY - Tracy Olla - 24
Describe yourself in 3 words: Interesting, Funny, Lover-of-People
What do you do: I'm a Hospital Pharmacist.
What's your dream job: Successful property developer.
Favourite thing to do when not working: Cook - stress reliever!
Favourite place to hang out in London: Anywhere with good food and a good vibe. Love brixton market, southbank and shoreditch areas.
AUGUST - Lula Ajani, 22
Describe yourself in 3 words: Inquisitive, Stubborn, Reserved-ish.
What do you do: Currently in my final year training to be a pharmacist, hoping to be fully qualified this summer.
What's your dream job: Food critic.
Favourite thing to do when not working: Read and catch up on as many series as possible.
Favourite place to hang out in London: I haven't spent much time in london over the last few years but my favourite place by far is Ronnie Scotts.
SEPTEMBER - Ayomide, 22
Describe yourself in 3 words: Adventurous, Inquisitive, Attentive
What do you do: Currently doing my legal practice course.
What's your dream job: Fashion Designer
Favourite thing to do when not working: Sewing
Favourite place to hang out in London: Anywhere there is good food.
OCTOBER - Dami Akinmarin, 24 - @lolamarine
Describe yourself in 3 words: Ambitious, God-fearing, Kind
What do you do: I work as a system support engineer for IBM contracted to Ogilvy and Mather.
What's your dream job: Chief Information Officer (CIO) for a company or Minister of ICT in Nigeria, Amen!
Favourite thing to do when not working: Staying on my bed and watching series.
Favourite place to hang out in London: Wura's house! lol I'm a home buddy and I love to hang out with friends at home.
NOVEMBER - Tobi Oredein, 25 - @blackballaduk, @iamtobioredein
Describe yourself in 3 words: Passionate, thoughtful, loyal
What do you do: I am a journalist who recently founded a glossy lifestyle website for black British women called Black Ballad - www.blackballad.co.uk
What's your dream job: Being the editor of Black Ballad
Favourite thing to do when not working: Visit a museum preferably in another country, but London has some great museums.
Favourite place to hang out in London: The Victoria & Albert museum or Portobello Market.
DECEMBER - Wura Afolabi, 25 - @wf_ldn, @wuraf
Describe yourself in 3 words: Dynamic, Optimistic, Stylish
What do you do: I'm a womenswear fashion designer, building up my own brand - WuraFola
What's your dream job: To be the founder and creative director of Africa's heritage luxury fashion brand. Italy has Gucci, England has Burberry, France has Chanel and America has Ralph Lauren, it's time we have something of our own :)
Favourite thing to do when not working: Chilling with my girls or catching up on tv shows - currently obsessed with Mad Men (thanks to sky box sets!)
Favourite place to hang out in London: Sky Bar at the Aspers Casino, Stratford Westfield. It's a great atmosphere, I love the live music and I meet the coolest people there.
Thank you to all the lovely ladies who took time out to be part of this. Like fine wine, may we all get better with time! :)
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