Inspire! With Nora Ed-Daoui – dare to dream
- 37 Posts
- Age 19
‘The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow’ – Nelson Mandela.
21-year old Nora Ed-Daoui has a pretty busy life. She studies at KULeuven, created her own company and is involved in many other projects. How does she do it? ‘I have ambition, that keeps me going.’ Let’s see what this interesting young lady has to say.
Tell us a bit about yourself and the things you do.
I’m Nora. I’m 21 years old and I am a communication student at KULeuven. In February I started my project Renescitia. The name refers to our motto ‘reinvent yourself’ and to the Renaissance, a period in European history. We offer talent coaching for and by youngsters. The goal of Renescitia is to ensure that young people dare to dream because I often notice that in today’s society young people aren’t really encouraged to dream and pursue those dreams. People often tell them to ‘stay realistic’. Even though it is always said they are the future, there are not many opportunities for them to develop their talents. With Renescitia we try to create those opportunities. We get in touch with young people; figure out a way to pursue their dreams/goals; connect them with others who can offer them opportunities; and we provide them with resources to work out their own projects. We basically work with two types of people. Firstly there are people who have an idea, but need help to turn it into reality. Secondly we work with youngsters on projects we develop ourselves for those who want to do something, but don't have a specific idea.
How did you come up with the idea to start Renescitia?
Because of my own experience. When I was younger I loved doing things related to art, but I just didn't know where to go with it. When I started university, I suddenly had a lot of time so after my exams the idea of Renescitia started growing. It took me and my co-founder Naoual Saddiki 9 months to create our project. With Renescitia I help other young people, but at the same time I can express myself in a creative way.
I sometimes feel like many young people are disapproving ambition themselves, what do you think about that?
It’s something I’ve noticed too, as example with my friends. When I first started all of this, they asked me what I was doing and if I was sure it was a good idea. I think this is a problem in our society nowadays. The impression is that you should not have too much ambition because you can't make it all happen. This is not true. There are so many young people with loads of talent who have achieved and can achieve amazing things in their life, but don’t because society says it won’t work out anyway. It only takes one dream and a whole lot of determination. The government is trying to work on this, but only on a very small scale, they still do not see talents - and the development of them - as a priority. In the context of my youth, I never came into contact with opportunities. It is only now after I created Renescitia that I noticed there are a lot of organisations and opportunities available. To be fair, I have to admit that sometimes youngsters don't always act upon the chances they get.
Tell us a bit more about everything else you do.
Kif is a movement in Antwerp. Their goal is to tackle racism
and discrimination in Flanders. We write opinion paragraphs about
hot topics, interview and tell the stories of successful people
with a different background to give them a platform. We also
collect the stories people who faced discrimination acts and
report them at UNIA, a public organisation that fights racism. We
organize discussions, activities and many more. I’m also the
communication coordinator of Amana, an organisation that helps
orphans in Belgium and Morocco. We gather money and then give
orphanages the things they need. Another thing we do is giving
homeless people in Belgium supplies twice a year. Amana is also
building a well in Morocco and provided the village with an
ambulance last year. Another thing I do is; I’m an ambassador for
my university KULeuven. I represent my story as a student with a
different background. We go to schools to tell about our
experiences and meet with the educational council of Leuven as
well. We tell our sides of the story and they can tell theirs and
we think together how we can deal better with certain things.
Last but not least, another project I’m involved in is Mvslim.com. This is a
website created by two of my friends. The goal of this project is
to deal with the stereotypes of Muslims that are created in the
media. They bring positive stories and I write articles once in a
while for them.