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Darwin helped to set up the Nutmeg Community Project, which aims to Unite, Educate, Inspire, and Create through inspirational workshops and community forums.
Name: Darwin Bernardo
Facebook: Darwin Bernardo
Check out Darwin’s work at: www.nutmegcommunity.org
How would you describe yourself in 10 words or less?
Emerging Leader, charismatic, Introspective, Determined.
Education, and Motivation will Inspire a Generation
Why did you get involved in your community?
One of my friends during the year of 2006died due to knife crime, this affected the whole school , and our wider community . Also in2006- 2007 there was a lot of reports on the number of young people that where dying in London. So I got together with a school teacher and held mini workshops inside our school to inform students that the carrying of knives is dangerous and that we needed to be united in sending a message that young people didn’t want this to become ‘normal’. This worked well but we wanted to spread the message to a wider audience so we got together with our local safer neighbour hood team and together we began to set up the Nutmeg Community.
What is your project about and when did it start?
Nutmeg`s “Unity Within the Community Project” also known as Everyone2gether, is about allowing young people to be involved of their own community. This project started in September 2008; This project had four main aims: toUnite, Educate, Inspire, and Create! From the Everyone2gether event we wanted to unite every young person from the various communities we were working with in a community hall, allowing them to be entertained by their own peers, who had various talents they liked to express. During these events we hold debates and allow external organisations to come along and educate the young people on topics such as: sexual health, anti knife crime, homelessness, abuse, drugs, and the education system amongst other things.
We also run motivational and self development workshops and invite inspirational young people who have set up their own organisations to talk to the young people, in the hope that they will provide inspiration. After being inspired, the young people will be determined to create their own projects that will help other young people in their community whether this is by holding music workshops, dance, art, fashion.
What difference has your project made, and to who?
This project has allowed young people to have an alternative state of mind, seeing members of the Nutmeg team who are all within the same age range doing positive activities will allow them to think that they can get involved as well. This project has allowed Nutmeg to effectively engage with other 2,500 young people from the ages of 4- 25 years old. Not only this, but the project has also attracted audience members aged 26-54 to the workshops and event.
How do you inspire other people to get involved, and who have you involved?
This project allows Nutmeg to go into schools, attend workshops, and even debate sessions held by various organisations. They allow us time to speak to young people about our projects, it’s been exciting receiving feedback from other young people who want to join the project, as they know that I’m of the same age and there is little difference between my background and theirs. This similarity makes it easier for them to understand the positivity both I and Nutmeg represent. This project has allowed me to involve other organisations that work with young people such as Barnet Homes, The Metropolitan Police Safer Neighbourhood teams, The Big Challenge, UnLtd, Changemakers, Elevation Networks, Emerging Leaders, Department for Schools children and Families, Youth justice in Action, Grab Ur Mike, Kidscount, Princes Trust, Sea cadet, VInspired, Army Cadet, NHS, local football teams and many more organisations.
What has been your most memorable experience in your project?
The day after one of our events we reviewed the tapes of the events, and saw the number of registration forms that were filled in. Over 784 young people had made a decision to be involved in a positive event, and be part of that community.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learnt during your experiences?
Everyone wants to be part of something, and if it’s the right opportunity is in front of them they will all go for it. Alicia Keys once said, “provide opportunities and you will eliminate the ghetto” I believe this to be true. If it wasn’t for the opportunity that I have been given by people around me who helped bring this project to life, I don’t think I would be the person I am today.
Where do you see your project going and how will you stay involved?
This project is run by the young people from the community, therefore I believe it will pass on to the next generation, with more and more young people getting involved and this project truly allowing them to be part of something positive. I personally will also be involved in this project, whether I become the motivational speaker during these events or the sponsor of the event.
What qualities does it take to be a good leader?
Patience , Positive thinking regardless of the outcome, persistence and faith in the young people you work with. As I once heard, “you don’t have to be great to start, but you do need to start to be great.” Visionary, has to have a clear plan that is flexible but has a concise aim and objective.
What do you feel inspired to do in the future and where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years?
Working with other young people and inspiring them.
- Student,Public Relations Manager, motivational speaker and Special Youth Diversion Officer
Thank youby on Fri, 2010-03-19 12:28
Let me take this time to thank The Youth Of Today, for giving soo many young people the opportunity to be recognised as a "HERO". The Youth Of Today are giving young people a true platform to represent themselves, and im glad im part of this positive movement.