Zahraa and Sarah from Engaging Young Entrepreneurs both contributed to this amazing interview, read on below!
Tell us all about you and your organization!
Hi! My name is Zahraa Hossenbaccus and I am the Director of External Affairs for Engaging Young Entrepreneurs (EYE). We are a youth-run, non-profit organization based in Kingston, ON, Canada that aims to help all youth get a grip on business and entrepreneurship. Our mission is “to open up students’ eyes to entrepreneurial resources in the community, encourages the discovery of new opportunities and pathways, while aiming to inspire leadership, creativity, and innovation.” This organization was founded by Sarah Hesp and Myra Chan in 2018 and has impacted over 600 students since its creation. Students have gotten involved with EYE through multiple events and virtual activities that help them get excited while still learning and understanding the risks and opportunities that come with entrepreneurship.
Why do you think it’s important for your generation to let their voices be heard?
I believe it is important for our generation to have our voices heard as we have new ideas and are excited to bring them to the table. Thanks to social media, our generation is very aware of the issues that are happening around the world. I believe that our generation’s voice needs to be amplified as I feel like we are pushing for change, especially concerning issues that should have been dealt with a long time ago.
Are you optimistic or pessimistic about the future?
I am optimistic for the future. I believe that there will be change in the future, for the better. I believe we just have to continue to have hope while still making sure to take the proper measures to make sure the people in power are willing to listen and make those changes. We just have to keep a positive mindset and keep pushing for our world to become a better place.
What are the most important issues facing our world right now? And in the future?
Hi! My name is Sarah Hesp, one of the two Co-Founders of EYE, and I will be providing answers for the next couple of questions.
2020 has been an eventful year so far – especially when it comes to the social issues many North Americans, and youth around the world, have been grappling with and advocating for. I would say that the #BlackLivesMatter movement (and by extension, the treatment of BIPOC) is one of the most important issues facing us right now. It has been amazing to see people start having conversations surrounding BLM and issues that BIPOC face, leading to education and advocacy through the sharing of information, petitions, and protests. While these efforts are admirable, I hope that we see real change regarding these issues in the near future, and justice for all of the BIPOC lives lost to police brutality.
The COVID-19 pandemic is another major issue currently facing the whole world, one that will certainly continue to impact our future. The virus has infected millions, claimed the lives of thousands, and will continue to spread if we are not careful. If you are out in public, please carry hand sanitizer/wash your hands before coming in contact with anything and wear a mask! While businesses have started to open up again, we want to make sure that they have the opportunity to stay open by lowering the number of active cases in our communities.
What does your organization offer that helps the world be a better place?
Our organization frequently shares a number of resources and opportunities with youth on our various social media platforms, focused on (but not limited to) business and entrepreneurship (both for-profit and social). By connecting youth with these different initiatives, we hope to help in fostering a more caring, educated, and innovative global society.
Will you be voting in the next election?
As I turned 18 this year, I will be! Canada’s next federal election is in 2023 so I do have a couple of years before I cast a ballot for our next PM. To anyone 18 or older reading this – especially Americans thinking about the upcoming 2020 election – please get out there and cast your ballot if you are able to!
Please tell us all about your current campaigns, projects and endeavors. Tell everyone where to find you online and on social platforms.
Right now, the majority of EYE’s events and activities will be hosted online through our various platforms.
We encourage you to check out and follow us on our Instagram (@engagingyoungentrepreneurs), our largest and most active social media page. We are currently hosting Story Takeovers to introduce our followers to different opportunities available in the fields of business, entrepreneurship, and STEM, and will be posting about our new initiatives soon!
We also have a website, engagingyoungentrepreneurs.com, that you can subscribe to! Our site will be getting a new look this summer, along with a new blog (that we will be recruiting writers for shortly), so get excited!
If there is anything else you would like to say, please do!
If you have any questions or would like to learn more about EYE and getting involved, feel free to message us on any of our social media platforms, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!