MEET THE TEAM: SHALINI SPEAKS

My journey started in early February, when I was in and out of jobs after just graduating university. I started a course in Digital Marketing and wanted to see where this knowledge takes me. As most students, I didn’t know what direction to take, I just knew I was creative, loved marketing and wanted my designs and work to make a difference. And that’s when I first met _SocialStarters.

_SocialStarters gave me the push in the right direction, at this point I knew what I wanted, I knew what my strengths were, and so they supported me to become a specialist in my field. Still juggling between my jobs, I was still so inspired by Social Entrepreneurship, I still wanted to share these stories, make the public aware of all these amazing things that were happening around the world. And that’s what took me to Rio.

Consultants come onto this programme to make a difference, to share their knowledge and consult start up or already established social enterprises around the world. _SocialStarters allow the consultants to use the right techniques and methods in order to become social entrepreneurs and with this, consultants are able to find out their own strengths and weaknesses by taking part in various challenges, workshops and then move on to helping their own clients in hard to reach places.

Social entrepreneurship is about telling a story, no matter what shape or form, they have an amazing story to tell on how they started, and how far they’ve come with that one innovative idea. Similarly, these consultants already have an amazing story to tell, just finishing university or even them just quitting their jobs a day before arrival after years of being fixated in just one industry, who are now starting an exciting journey in Brazil. But what inspired me the most is that half of them didn’t know how good they actually were, how much they could help these social enterprises with the knowledge they brought from their experiences.

Coming out here allowed me to reflect on my own strengths and my own journey I wanted to take. I enjoyed getting to know the _SocialStarters team, the clients, the consultants, and the journeys they’ve had so far. One of the highlights was creating a workshop for storytelling through various platforms; giving the consultants a chance to reflect on themselves. It was really great to see the enthusiasm of how people wanted to share their stories in a creative way. And that’s when I knew what I aspire to be, helping people figure out their own journeys, their own strengths and help them succeed in their field of expertise.

That’s what this journey is about, being different, not being afraid to show what makes you stand out from the crowd. This is what my journey is about, helping people in an innovative and creative way in order to make the world a better place.

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