Richard Mabala is an author, a teacher, a poet and a family man. And when he's not busy writing really funny stories for the papers or something for a new book, he spends his time fighting for the rights of Tanzanian youth, chief among them a right to have a voice as leaders and social entrepreneurs.
Richard come into the country as a French teacher, but later taught English literature and poetry. Being a teacher at one of the best schools the young nation at the time meant that his students later became the country's political and thought leaders, some of whom are still artist, writers, government ministers and senior professors at the state University. Richard himself taught at a number of academic institutions from 1973 to 1993 until he realized he was more an activist than an academic.
He immersed himself into conversations and activities centering on issues to do with education, gender and youth development and became a founding member of Tanzania Gender Networking Program and HAKIELIMU, an organisation promoting the right to education. Upon invitation he worked with UNICEF from 1999 to 2007 where he wrote for the Sarah Communication Initiative, was Regional Advisor for Eastern and Southern Africa on Youth & HIV issues and head of Department in Ethiopia. He later decided he wanted to come back home and keep working with the youth in Tanzania. That's how Tamasha
is a youth empowerment NGO based in Arusha that works with youth centres to reach the most marginalized young people all over the country. Through Tamasha, Richard encourages communities to give young people a voice, promotes social entrepreneurship and trains the youth in these communities on how to identify and access opportunities.
When he is not in the wards and districts educating communities, Richard Mabala uses his writing to talk about the most critical and difficult issues facing the youth today. The books he writes are about larger than life characters tackling the issues of gender and youth empowerment with such well crafted humour and wit that teachers use them as the academic standard to teach these basic social lessons to young students all over the nation...
All this does not even begin to describe the social entrepreneur that Richard Mabala is. We are so excited to host him at Startup Grind Dar!