September 21, 2023

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At BoF VOICES 2022, vogue mannequin Dennis Okwera spoke about his childhood in Uganda, fleeing dwelling to keep away from the violent lifetime of changing into a toddler soldier within the insurgent group Lord’s Resistance Military, coming to the UK as a refugee on the age of 9.

Although he was scouted a number of occasions whereas dwelling within the UK, it wasn’t till he was attending college that Okwera determined to pursue modelling.

This week on the BoF podcast, mannequin Okwera discusses his childhood escaping a guerilla military in Uganda, his grownup life as a mannequin within the UK and the way he used his success to offer again to his neighborhood.

“Let’s simply be somewhat bit kinder to one another, particularly to refugees. Simply see them with an open mindset; we’re simply on the lookout for safety and freedom, that’s it actually,” stated Okwera.

Key Insights:

  • After Okwera was scouted he stated at first his father objected to the thought of him modelling. “The primary time I obtained scouted, my dad was like; ‘No, no, you’re not doing it.’ , that is an African dad who thinks something exterior of schooling is an entire failure,” he says
  • When Okwera first began his modelling profession he had the chance to work with designer Grace Wales Bonner when she was nonetheless a pupil attending Central Saint Martins.
  • Because of his profession in modelling, Okwera was capable of put his cousins by means of college and help his aunt who was identified with HIV. Okwera says the “sole goal” of him pursuing a modelling profession was to help his household.
  • After travelling again to Uganda to donate sanitary necessities like diapers and method, Okwera reunited together with his mom after 24 years of being away. “I didn’t know what it was prefer to have your personal mum,” stated Okwera.

Further Sources:

  • BoF VOICES 2022: Reside Your Greatest Life: Throughout final 12 months’s BoF VOICES mannequin Dennis Okwera mentioned his childhood escaping the insurgent group, Lord’s Resistance Military and fleeing Uganda to stay within the UK.