The Heart of Bucks ‘Inspiring Buckinghamshire’ series gives local people from a range of sectors a chance to share their knowledge and insights to help inspire others.
Here we are speaking with Haseeb Nawaz, Assistant Manager at Wycombe Youth Action.
Tell us about yourself and your connection to Buckinghamshire.
I was born and raised in High Wycombe and have spent the last 10 years working in the charitable sector as a youth worker alongside this I have been working independently in doing body vehicle repairs/ respraying on project cars which is big passion of mine from an early age. My journey to youthwork began in 2014 when I joined Wycombe Youth Action as a Project Officer. Over the years, I have been promoted to the position of Assistant Manager. My passion lies in creating positive change and I firmly believe that everyone has the potential to transform their lives with the right support and mindset. I aspire to inspire the local youth by leading by example and empowering them through educational workshops. My goal is to equip them with the necessary skills to further develop themselves and thrive in their endeavours.
What personal achievements are you most proud of?
One of my most significant achievements that I am immensely proud of is establishing an empowerment youth club. This club operates on a weekly basis and aims to provide support to the most vulnerable young individuals in our community, specifically focusing on young people who are at a higher risk of being exploited, groomed. Creating a safe space where they can find guidance, resources, and a supportive network has been incredibly rewarding. Additionally, I take great pride in my role as an Assistant Manager for a respected youth charity. Through this position, I have been able to actively contribute to addressing critical issues that affect young people, such as knife crime, county lines and grooming. Being part of an organisation that strives to make a positive impact on their lives has been both fulfilling and humbling. These achievements have reinforced my belief in the power of collective effort and the importance of providing opportunities for growth.
What are some of the challenges you have faced, and how have you overcome them?
Over the years of delivering youth work I have been able to provide support to a variety of young people from different ethnicities and backgrounds, some of which have had altercations and physical run in’s with other young people/group’s within the community. Establishing firm relationships with both sets of young people has allowed us to deliver conflict resolution and establish a mutual understanding between groups who otherwise would have found themselves in an escalation of affairs due to a variety of combination factors.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
One of the best bits of advice I have received is from my father, he would regularly reiterate the following saying and is a fond memory from my childhood growing up “Do what you want but do it with dignity” These have been really powerful words as I have found myself doing what I love, it has also inspired me to be optimistic of the future and believe that ideas and thoughts have the power in becoming a reality when you carry out the necessary action needed.
What is your greatest hope for the future for Buckinghamshire?
My greatest hope for the future of Buckinghamshire is to see businesses actively creating more opportunities for vulnerable young people to engage in meaningful employment. By offering these individuals a chance to develop valuable skills and gain work experience, we can help prevent them from falling into the traps of grooming or a life of crime. I envision a future where businesses in Bucks recognise the potential in these young people and provide them with mentorship training and employment opportunities. This would not only empower them to build a brighter future for themselves but also contribute positively to the local economy and community. By investing in the potential of vulnerable youth, we can break the cycle of disadvantage and create a more inclusive society. Ultimately my hope is, through collective efforts, we can create a future where vulnerable youth are empowered, valued and equipped with the tools they need to succeed.
Follow Haseeb on LinkedIn here.
Read more of our Inspiring Buckinghamshire interviews here.