The idea that we are the future is not lost on us
Future Leaders is a registered charity that offers students a range of meaningful opportunities through study, service, mentorship and empowerment to develop the knowledge, experience and leadership skills they need to make a positive change in the community. In all our activities, we encourage independent thought with a community-centred and social justice-minded approach that will enable students to gain a better understanding of themselves, disrupt the status quo and take charge over their futures.
Future Leaders recently hosted its inaugural mentorship event as part of a new “Monthly Mentorship Club'', which will see students engage in various life-skills and personal-development activities throughout the school year. The format of the club combines educational sessions with a fun activity at a local establishment each month.
For the first event, Future Leaders were taken on an African-Bermudian Dispersion “Long Walk to Freedom” Cultural Tour with Titan Express.
The below reflections from Future Leaders speak to their acknowledgement of the need for holistic education, which improves the cultural and historical awareness of students. In a world where so-called “soft skills” are increasingly being recognised as essential, opportunities for self-reflection, which challenge students to think critically around knowledge of self, one’s history and identity, remain fundamental gaps that Future Leaders Bermuda works to fill.
The reflections of students below speak to this void which must be filled, and an indication of some of the questions our young people are beginning to have. The answer lies within all of us.
On February 12, Future Leaders launched its new Monthly Mentorship Club.
The operations manager and head of the club, Alicia Lister, was hopeful, but unsure of how well we would receive our inaugural meeting. However, it exceeded all expectations.
The Future Leaders Programme has encouraged us to understand our role in the community. Our first meeting included a diaspora tour from Titan Tours. Facilitator Rashida Godwin told tales of Mary Prince, Sally Bassett and more, as we toured Hamilton. During our final stop at Barr’s Bay Park, we stood surrounding the We Arrive sculpture. I don’t believe any of us knew the sculpture was there. We definitely did not know what it represented!
In order to understand our voice in the community, we must first understand our community. A part of understanding our community is understanding all of our history and the paths that have led to our present locations.
Taking part in the Titan Tours experience was eye-opening for all of us. What should be common knowledge is somehow evading our consciousness, and we are curious as to why.
We appreciate the efforts of Titan Tours, and others, who have created spaces for us to understand Bermuda’s history. However, why does this void exist? This tour has ignited a fire in us to advocate for more of Bermuda’s history to be taught. We can use this knowledge to not only explain where we are today as a society, but also to learn from our history to determine where we want to be in the future.
That we collectively felt the same way should speak volumes. We were thoroughly engaged on a Saturday, and did not want the tour to end.
The Godwins were gracious enough to receive our questions with the same enthusiasm they were posed. We were able to continue our conversation in Victoria Park, while trying to process all we had learnt. The idea that we are the future is not lost on us. We can take an active role in our community and help facilitate change with the understanding that it is for all of us. Our future is in our hands and we do not take that lightly.
We would like to thank Ms Lister for starting our programme with Titan Tours. It was just what we needed to awaken our interests and empower us to seek more. More knowledge, more understanding ... just more.
We are our ancestors' greatest dreams, and we’re looking forward to each month’s opportunities to demonstrate that.
• Contributing Future Leaders are Xavier Ramsay, Preston Ephraim III, Sari Smith, Meron Simons and A’Mya Harvey
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