Office Hours: I'm the co-founder of Future Narratives and former StratComms Officer at the International Organization for Migration Somalia. I'm Raquel Wilson.Featured

Hi everyone! I’m Raquel Wilson, co-founder of Future Narratives, a strategy advisory that helps extraordinary thinkers shape the ideas, innovations and interactions creating the future of African cities; and a digital communications and marketing specialist working with the African Development Bank’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship Lab.I was formerly a strategic communications and media officer at International Organization for Migration (UN Migration) Somalia, and led the deployment of the first online platform for monitoring hate crimes across Europe as a Web Manager for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.I have a bachelor’s degree in informatics from Indiana University and I am a MBA-candidate at the University of the Arts London. Ask me anything about communications strategy, impact, development and more!
Thanks so much for joining us @raquelwilson!Elphas – please ask @raquelwilson your questions before Friday, November 13th. @raquelwilson may not have time to answer every questions, so emoji upvote your favorites 🔥👍🏾➕
OMG HI RAQUEL! That’s it, that’s my comment. 🥰
Did you ever feel like “but I’m just one person, how can I really change anything?”? I get stuck in those thoughts a lot, like I’m too small to make a difference. How did you move past that?
Great question Nicole, and YES! I think this every single day. My daily foe is imposter syndrome! The best way I have found to move past those things is by compiling a list of how I HAVE changed things. Since my works involves me helping others solve problems, that list is often the successes of people I have worked with to talk through a challenge. Seeing them move past that challenge is how I remind myself that I CAN impact change!
Hi Raquel! Everytime I read something Africa-related, my Africa radar is activated haha but honestly love what you are doing + as a former UN staffer I feel even more connected! Could you tell us a bit more about Future Narratives and what type of audience do you help? And to you what is the future African city? Do you think all cities should be like a Kigali (very much "futuristic") or is there a way to balance our current challenges (lack of infrastructure, urban planning that is basically nonexistant) with some of the emerging technologies?Excited to hear your take on this!
Hi Iynna. Thanks so much for your questions! Future Narratives partners with startups, civil society organizations and international agencies to help them solve problems. Most of the work has been working with people who wanted to create access to better social services for communities including creating safe spaces and learning environments for children in Senegal and designing a radio program and listening group for women in rural Somalia that helps them learn about government services available. I think there is an opportunity to reimagine all cities. There was a time when cities were for people, but we slowly moved away from building for people. We need to get back to that space now as a way to ensure future people have access to best quality of life. There are many things about Kigali that work and are good. But I worry about the governance of the country too much for me to actually say cities should be like Kigali. There is a way to slow balance the current challenges with emerging technologies. Sadly I believe it's our leaders[hip] that keeps us from seeing alternative ways of living.
Hi @raquelwilson! Thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge and wisdom this week!It can be difficult to develop or actualize an idea or innovation especially when you have no idea what to do after it pops into your head. Particularly if it's related to a subject matter you do not have much experience with. What are some of the first steps one can take towards developing and realizing those ideas?
Thank you Naome. I hope I can have some impact with Office Hours. The first thing I can offer is to either let go of fear OR if you can't low go of the fear, acknowledge, accept it but keep moving on. When I see a problem and decide I want to solve it, even if I don't have direct experience, but know it's something that needs to change, I research hard! I Google and read as many articles online. I hit up Twitter and ask questions of people there. I try to learn as much as I can so I can really understand the problem. Many people love to share what they know about a topic.
Hi @raquelwilson, nice to e-meet you! I read you’re a huge advocate for mentoring young women... I know the common question to ask if what’s the best advice you’ve ever received or given but let’s change things up! In your experienced, when you have been in the “mentee side” What’s the worst advice that you have ever received? And why? (Career oriented)