Shaping Narrative

Shaping Narrative

It’s been a summer of influential African hashtags. The hashtags have trended across the continent and global diaspora this summer. While many of them have been fun like #IfAfricaWasABar others have had fun campaigning like #SomeoneTellCNN but they all point to young Africans increasingly shaping their own narrative.

And now with Cecil the Lion’s story breaking the USA internet, it’s safe to say, Africa is on the world’s map. And even more so, Zimbabwe is on the radar.

But is it for all of the right reasons?

If you ask most people in the city centre of Harare what they think of Cecil, most will not know who you’re talking about. And those that do, say something like, “Where are the news articles when my friend is eaten by a croc at Kariba, chased by a lion in Mana, or trampled by an elephant in Hwange?"

Yet that’s the point. If we allow the world to shape the narrative for us young Africans, then we will be subjugated to what they deem newsworthy.

It’s inspiring to see many young entrepreneurs and professionals taking charge of their story and their narrative. As this take charge mentality increases, I believe it may affect the stories we see coming out of Africa.

We’re joining this cause and beginning development on a storytelling project to share the inside scoop of entrepreneurs in Zimbabwe and what that looks like. It’s time to show the behind the scenes of what life is like as an African entrepreneur.

It certainly isn’t glamorous, but it’s deeply necessary in order to shift the economic decline that has been so devastating to our nation over the last decade.

Don’t get me wrong, we’re bullish on Africa in a big way. We’re not diversified whatsoever—100% invested in the entrepreneurs of this continent. But we have to be realistic when faced with what life is really like here.

Let’s shape our narrative.

The world needs to hear the real story. Honest, true, optimistic, hopeful, and courageous—that’s all of our story.

(photo via liz west)