Stepping out of one’s comfort zone and exposing oneself to new experiences, new cultures, and new perspectives often jumpstart self-growth and the discovery of a particular passion for a craft or profession. In the case of Fatema Jaffer, it was her internship in Kenya that sparked her passion for service work. Today, driven to impact lives and communities, this inspirational icon calls others to action.
Fatema Jaffer is a former student-athlete who graduated with a B.S. in Political Science and International Affairs from Florida State University. As a scholarship athlete, she ran both cross country and track and field, dashing her way to several accomplishments and podium recognition. Although she still loves to run, she has moved away from the sports scene and is now pouring her heart and dedicating her time to nonprofit work.
In 2017, Florida native Fatema Jaffer contributed to the learning and development of Kenyan children by teaching math and English during a six-week internship. Little did she know that this trip would transform her into a devout advocate for educational opportunities for children.
Along with becoming a full-time educator in the United States, she joined the nonprofit organization Cross World Africa, Inc as its Development Director to inspire change and help lives. On a mission to defeat global inequality through entrepreneurship, education, and public health, this foundation has conducted a multitude of projects in Kenya’s urban and rural communities. As one of its leaders and a member of CWA’s board, Fatema Jaffer brings dedicated volunteers to Kenya to lend a hand to schools and villages to create a sustainable lifestyle and implement educational initiatives.
With these Kenya-bound service trips, volunteers are given a chance to not only immerse themselves in a completely new culture for a few weeks but also to understand the different realities of life. Above anything else, this particular kind of effort is intended to stand against the prevalent approach of looking at international volunteer work as mission trips where the people journeying to other countries will serve as the heroes out to save lives. Instead, Fatema Jaffer and Cross World Africa emphasize how volunteers can equip locals with the knowledge and skills to build better lives.
While leaving the world of sports was undeniably challenging for Fatema Jaffer, her decision to transition to the realm of nonprofit became a no-brainer in the face of her commitment to providing educational opportunities to children. In the coming years, she aims to obtain a law degree and bank on her ever-expanding portfolio of credentials to create a nonprofit organization that will focus on education. Additionally, she plans for the services of her future venture to complement the provisions of Cross World Africa.
As Fatema Jaffer continues to contribute to the upliftment of countless individuals’ lives through her pursuits, this passionate professional hopes to become a motivating beacon for today’s young generation, encouraging them to discover their calling and utilize their passion in the service of communities.
Learn more about how to get involved with these opportunities by visiting her website, or reach out by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.