Social Entrepreneurship & Solo Female Travel – Interview With Hind Touissate
Can you imagine a fashion designer, social entrepreneur, public speaker, blogger, polyglote, solo female traveler in one body? Well, these are just a couple of words to briefly describe this amazing person that is Hind. She’s a Moroccan woman, born in 1990. An inspiration for many, a social influencer who embraces change and makes education available for everyone.
Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to Hind Touissate!
How did you start blogging, what pushed you to make this decision? Has something in your life changed since you started blogging?
I was a 20 year old university student with a clear idea of what I wanted to do after graduating: Be happy, make money doing what I love, make a difference and Travel the World. I just didn’t know how I was going to do that, but I was sure I wanted to do it.
At the time, I was working part-time with Amnesty International and writing articles on their Blog almost on a daily basis. I truly enjoyed writing about Human Rights issues because at times, it felt as if I was bearing witness to turning points in Human History and participating in documenting them.
After the end of my job with the organization, I had naturally stopped writing on their Blog and I missed that daily part in my life. So I started my own Blog on July 17th, 2011 and it became more and more enjoyable to produce my original content. One day that summer, a whole 5000 people visited my Blog! I couldn’t help but stop and think: “Imagine if I filled a room with that many people who will help me help other people!” That idea blew my mind, I had no clue that day that my Blog will become one of my jobs and that I would travel, help give a voice to the voiceless and grow to see nearly 10 times that amount of visitors after being voted: Best Female Blogger in Morocco on January 2012 at the Maroc Web Awards.
So here I am now, 25 years old, 3 years after graduating with a Master’s degree in Marketing, self-employed as a Blogger, Human rights activist, traveler, public speaker, social entrepreneur and Fashion designer and I can’t wait to discover what’s coming up next.
You’re constantly expanding your activites, sometimes it is hard to follow you! Hind and Company, BETA Changemakers, According to Hind… Tell us the secret: what makes you keep going?
First, thank you so much for always sending me positive comments and messages Monika. It really means a lot.
There is no secret; just dream and do.
I always remind myself that if someone else can do it, then so can I.
I sit here answering your questions today, having almost “accidentally” started a Blog, my own business and my own Social enterprise and I am as happy to wake up on a Monday as I am on a Friday. I get to wake up every day, work from wherever my electronic devices are, create content I believe in, design, take pictures, meet and work with amazing people and organizations from all around the World and travel to new destinations to network with people who care about the same issues I care about.
Working for myself has helped me push myself creatively. It motivated me to get over my fear of sharing my ideas and parts of my life with people. Also, I have made real friends thanks to my Blog, BETA Changemakers and the soon to be launched Hind and Company, and this is what I love the most about this whole journey.
You’re a solo female traveler, tell us how traveling solo is better than with someone? What would you tell to girls who would like to do it but are still hesitating?
If your dream is to travel the World, keep dreaming and start thinking about how you can make that dream a reality. Don’t be afraid to travel alone because it is fun to travel with friends, but it is even more exciting when you are on your own.
My parents are so protective of me; it took me a long time to convince them that I was capable of taking care of myself wherever I am.
It’s hard to explain, but there is always that look in their eyes every time I tell them my tickets are booked to a new destination and that I would appreciate it if they didn’t freak out about it. They always do and then they will insist on driving me to the airport and I know that they a new car show is awaiting me on the way to the airport. It is a show about the history of the country I’m visiting, the places I need to visit, the food I need to eat and avoid, the times I need to call them and a reminder of a few Kung Fu movements my dad taught me when I was 6 years old and so on and so forth.
On a serious note, traveling alone has been one of the best decisions I made. I have visited places I only dreamt of during my childhood and my teenage years. Countries I would have never seen if I didn’t have that moment of insanity to head out alone. So here is a quick note to you and me: Be insane and travel if that’s what you really want to do.
You put an enormous emphasis on Education. You’ve given seminars in Turkey, South Korea, Morocco, France and the Netherlands. What do you think these countries could learn from one another (if anything)?
I was involved in Education and Social Entrepreneurship projects since I was 16 years old and I was fortunate to learn and network with young leaders from around the World who care about Human Rights issues and GCED: Global Citizenship Education which aims to empower learners of all ages – children, young people and adults alike to assume active roles to face and resolve global challenges and become proactive contributors to a more peaceful, tolerant, inclusive, safe and secure planet.
I believe countries should learn more about each other to be able to learn from one another. We do not have to look, be or act the same, we just have to respect each other and know that there is no right or wrong when it comes to cultures, there is just “different” and different is ok, different is good, it’s what makes us human and unique.
The World will be a better place if we work together, stop complaining and start doing.
How many languages do you speak fluently? What’s your method to learn them?
I speak 6 languages fluently and I still have SO many languages that I am looking forward to learn. I was asked “Why?”, “What’s the point if you already know English?” To me, every new language opens a new door of opportunities and helps me get a new perspective about a new culture.
My method to learn is very basic: I learn like a kid. I wrote about this in my Blog; the key to learning as quickly as a child may be to simply take on certain childlike attitudes: for instance, lack of self-consciousness, a desire to play in the language and willingness to make mistakes.
So discover the language first by listening to music, watching movies, mimicking sounds. Then, use technology, read children’s books and translations of novels you already love. Do not be afraid to start conversations with strangers. Have fun learning and practice every single day. The key to reaching anything is: Consistency.
A few words to the Readers of my blog?
Be grateful for what you already have, work hard to make your dreams come true and most importantly enjoy life.
Photo credits: Hind Touissate.
You can follow Hind on Facebook.