This is an article about youth, hegemony, and the misguided approach of the Western mind in dealing with both Youth, based on nearly a decade of research subsequent to a life-changing experience I had whilst volunteering for an independent Somali-run youth centre in St Pauls, Bristol, in 2005
Somalia has longer standing ties with the UK than one might think, and the UK has more involvement with Somalia’s conflicts than we are led to beleive, but before I became aware of all that, I had simply stumbled upon an offer put to me after inquiring as to the usage of a shop/cafe space, with the view to setting up a community cafe.
What I found was a working youth centre, set-up by two friends with own savings and loans, with a drive to improve prospects for their brothers and sister uprooted to the UK because of terrible conflicts back home. But it was struggling to make ends meet, and they asked if I’d be interested in volunteering to see if I could help turn it around for them. Being who I was, I took up the offer, and spent my time making small improvements, getting to know the members, and seeing if I could help in funding efforts.