Focus on Youth Leader, Innocent Ninsiima

YOUTH INSPIRED: By Gloria Iribagiza
At the age of 23, Innocent Ninsiima has positioned himself as a highly motivated leader and self-starter among the Rwandan youth. He is the Co – Founder and C.E.O of Grow2Lead, Creative Director of Ninsiima Concepts and Rwanda’s Youth Representative to the Commonwealth.

The Service Mag (TSM) caught up with him to find out how he manages to balance these roles while still pursuing his studies at Mount Kenya University. Below are the interview excerpts.

TSM: What specific roles do you play among the Rwandan youth?
I have three major roles I’m involved in currently; As co-founder founder and C.E.O at Grow2Lead, a Youth thinktank founded to inspire African Youth in Leadership and Social Entrepreneur- ship; we transform the lives of young people and communities through un- locking the potential of today’s generation. We know every citizen can achieve, we just help people realize this.

My other role is that of Creative Director at NinsiimaConcepts, which is one of Rwanda’s premiere social enterprises. We provide superior services in Public Relations, Campaign Activations, Communication and Events Manage- ment, serving both the domestic and the international market.

Lastly, as Rwanda’s Youth Ambassador to the Commonwealth, my activities mostly revolve around advocating for Rwandan Youth in the Commonwealth and bridging the gap between the Government of Rwanda and the youth sector.

TSM: Why are the above roles important?
I always believe in the virtue of selfless- ness as a principle towards building a new Africa that we shall be proud of! I do what I do because I believe that I am contributing to this dream of a new continent whose people can envision its future in a positive light and are not afraid to take big strides towards mak- ing Africa a better place today and for generations to come.

TSM: What do you consider as your biggest success story? That’s a hard questions to answer be- cause for everything I have done, there has always been someone I have done it with. I am the kind of person who be- lieves in teamwork. However, seeing the actualization of the Teen Times concept in The New Times is one of the things that I am proud of. The magazine has been a great success so far and I am always happy with the role I played from conceptualizing it to contributing towards it whenever I can.

TSM: And your biggest challenge? I have actually been my biggest challenge. Being over ambitious is a good thing but if you are not careful, it could also be something that is fatal. Until I was taught on how to manage my ambitions, it was a big challenge to me.

TSM: What do you think about Service Delivery in Rwanda and what should be done to improve it? I think a lot has been done but the challenge remains with attitude. It’s a big challenge which will take us change. Service delivery is a two-way thing! We the people who give the services need to change our attitude because sometimes it’s not good towards the people we are giving the service to and also the benefactors (people getting the service) also need to change their attitudes because we are also human.

TSM: What are your aspirations? One of my aspirations is to see a new African continent where leaders walk the talk. A continent full of ambition and resilience; where we shall celebrate the uniqueness in our differences rather than fighting against each other.

TSM: What wise counsel could you give to the Rwandan Youth?
The time has come for us to change our communities. Let’s not wait for things to be given to us on a silver platter; let’s work hard and take our country to the next level and continue building on what has already been done so far.

Face to Face:

Happiest when: “…a successful story impacts a society. It just gets me thinking… ‘Boy that’s so cool’”.

Afraid and sad when: “…a young person passes on. It hurts me so much! Loosing someone so dear to me makes me afraid! The thought of it makes me so thoughtful!

Favorite hangout spot: “… I love New Fiesta at Kisementi and not because of that drum that we have to hit when we love the food! I also fancy Sticky when I want to catch-up with ‘the boys’.

Favorite Drink/ Dish: “…I enjoy tradi- tional dishes as long as it has nothing to do with fish! Drink uhhhhm… mango juice always does the magic!”

Dream Car: “…I love BMW series and currently I’m into the BMW Z4 2011! I would recommend it for anyone who loves class, style and adventure.”

Gadget or accessory you can’t do without: “…I’m never without my Gucci Elegance watch! I even sleep with it on my right hand.”

Celebrity/ famous person since time begun: “…I would have loved to meet Adam and ask him what he was thinking while he was eating the forbidden fruit and what exactly it was.”

Most Inspired when: “…My inborn desire to inspire others surfaces. I always aspire to inspire people.”

Relationship status: “…Hahaha…I’m not married, neither am I in a relationship! I am single.”

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