Madam Sips ‘Faki Mafunda’, the EAC Youth Ambassador of Tanzania; On Zanzibar Youth Talk, the Zanzibar Debate Society, Sips Tours, and Travels, and Save the Ocean Zanzibar Campaign
“When I look at myself and how much I have overcome especially coming from a poor family with some illiterate family members who don’t support you for anything and are waiting for your failure, and looking at myself as a young lady working from day till night, working, studying at the same time makes me realize that I need to push more, I need to keep going and make sure that I have to be proud of myself and keep dreaming big; that one day I am going to be living in my dreams that I have been chasing since before.” Faki Mafunda
Mafunda Kombo Faki (Madam Sips) is a twenty-four-year-old Student at The Institute of Public Administration (IPA) in Zanzibar Tanzania, where she is pursuing a Bachelors’ Degree in International Relations and Diplomacy. Faki is also the CEO of ‘SIPS TOURS and TRAVELS’ and her business name ‘SIPS’, also her nickname, was given by an English Language Teacher of hers from ‘Streeter’s Skilled School’. Faki says she has been using this name for a long time, thus it calls for easier recognition of her, definitely good for business.
In 2019, Faki with a friend of hers, Co-Founded the Zanzibar Youth Talk, a youth-led organization whose objective is to Amplify Youth voices. They were also able to conduct different programs such as ‘Be Inspired Unleash Your Potential’ with more than 200 people, did a bookworm lounge launch with 100 people, and the Zanzibar Peace Club to which Faki is president, hosted over 200 attendees at its launch. Not to mention their partnership with the ‘Zanzibar Youth Award’, an awarding event with almost 400 people. Springing from a youngster such as Faki, this is mega and her hard work is absolutely mind-blowing. She’s definitely an Inspiration.
Besides being the CEO of her own Tour Company, Faki is also working in a law firm as a consultant and liaison, as she’s still in her last year at IPA. Like mentioned in the previous paragraph, Peace Agent Faki is the president of the ‘Zanzibar Peace Club’ affiliated to the World Peace Initiative, under their Program Peace Revolution. See about peace revolution on this blog HERE, Or the Organization’s website. And don’t hesitate to join the program! Faki is also The East African Community Youth Ambassador to Tanzania, the Co-Founder of Zanzibar Youth Talk, Co-Founder of Zanzibar Debate Society, Protocol officer, and the Board Member of Save the Ocean Zanzibar Campaign.
“What motivates me to do what I do is seeing that, I started this with the faith that I will go far in my life no matter what circumstances I will go through, also I believe that there are people who trust me, who believe in me and what I do, some people take me as their inspirational person, many referred to me their role model, and in my family they take me as their head and big sister, and in my community people take me as their example, so this makes me keep going, so I do more and more every day. Seeing some people not giving up on their dreams and making sure they climb higher makes me keep moving, seeing my fellow youth working together making changes and impacting our community keeps me focused; more and not being tired to learn and keep acting in my own community.” -Faki
The fourth born of six children, with three brothers and two sisters, Faki says she remembers her journey starting when she was a Form one student, just when she joined the Environmental club, art club, French club and Islamic religion club where she joined all four clubs out of curiosity and said to herself that maybe she could manage all of them.
“But, at last, I remained in two which were Art club and French club. In the art club, we were mostly focusing on Acting dramas, singing, dancing, writing and drawing, and different staffs like that where I was performing in different places and in different competitions. Through this, I got the chance to be selected to participate in the TV show called USEWAZA which was going on Air in National TV every Wednesday and my part with my fellow 10 students was to act a 15 minutes drama depending on certain topics and we later have a discussion over it which makes 1 hour of the show and it went smooth for 4 years. From my first year I was doing it well as I was performing a different kind of character and as I was young (15 years old) most of the time I was acting as a kid, a schoolgirl, a friend etc.” Faki reveals
“Within that time, from my family, I was the first person to pass my exam in Standard 7 and I was supposed to study in Stone Town, I had to have money for daladala fees (Transport fees) and as being in town, things are different i.e. food and some expenditure, meaning I had to look as town girls so I had to look good form top to bottom, from my uniforms, my shoes, my bag, the way am leaving, the way am speaking and everything. So, my family couldn’t give me all I needed and I had to fight for my life, to find what I need no matter my young age. So, the TV show program was giving me some money for my daily needs and it was a big help so I started changing myself form the way I was wearing before or living before and modernize myself.” Faki further reveals.
While studying the English language at Streeters, Faki got the opportunity to hear news about the American corner English Club at the Zanzibar Main Library and she decided to join for her English Practices, reporting there every Saturday morning. Therein, she started meeting different people and they formed a Youth organization called ‘Youth for empowerment and Changes’ and Faki was chosen as the Founder and Assistant coordinator for Youth and Innovation. Soon after her third year of studying, she had the opportunity to go for a study tour to South Africa for 2 weeks and at the end of the program she graduated and became an English Language Teacher, and after one year she became the Secretary. From there on, her professional life started and she got to work in different places like The Crescent Academy, Mombassa Central School, Jabal Khiraa Integrated Academy, becoming Tour Guide, working in the hotel as Reservation officer at Zanzibar International Paradise Hotel from the company called Makuku Tours and Travel.
“In the next 10 years, I expect to see my business among the best tour company in Zanzibar to bring a big number of tourists around the world and providing the best services ever with the best workers and satisfactory services.” – Madam Sips
Sips Tours and Travels is located in Stone Town Zanzibar, and Faki says she came up with the idea when she wanted to go to university and pursue a course in Tourism Management and Marketing but failed to be admitted to that university twice, despite the fact that she has been a tour guide before participating in Zanzibar Tourism show in 2 years, been in-field practices at Zanzibar Commission for Tourism in 2019 for 4 months, founded the ‘60 women tour guide program’ through New Vision Consortium Trainers (NVCT) and regularly encounters a lot of people in the Tourism Sector. This pushed her to start her own Tour company so that she can employ other youths one way or another. Faki intends to launch the company soon.
“What keeps me going on day by day, and manage to keep moving despite challenges is the support I get from my friend and my guardian who always support me in any of my initiatives no matter what, and also I see that the tourism in Zanzibar is still growing up especially right now the Minister for Tourism Information and Heritage himself who is my guardian and a supporter of my business 100% has said that on June 15, 2020, the tourism in Zanzibar is coming back again where I can have to keep making my business running well. Seeing a lot of my fellow young people who use their times working in Tourism sectors keeps me pushing more and right now I have decided that I am planning to start a new organization called Zanzibar Young Tourism Investors (ZYTI) where most of the young people who invested in tourism activities will be joining together and making impacts in Zanzibar Tourism.” – Faki
Through my high school life till now, I have had different struggles, challenges and successes that have kept me going on, as in 2018 I participated in EAC University students debates and became the EAC Youth Ambassador to Tanzania, also from my University that am studying I participated in different formal events as the protocol officer and had the chance to be the Assistant Chief protocol officer to Zanzibar Tourism Show and being the Chief Protocol officer in charge at the Zanzibar Tourism Show Gala Dinner.
“My advice to my fellow youth is that they don’t have to give up on their dreams no matter what and if they see they are facing setbacks and problems, they don’t have to give up, problems are always there but what matters is how they overcome them. There will also be people who will disappoint them when they see them doing something good and wanting them to be down, but what matters is what they believe and should keep their mind focused so as to reach the best destination of their dreams, as to me I never expected that one day I will be the CEO of Sips Tours and Travels but here I am today having what my dreams were telling me to have.” – Faki Concludes.
Howdy, we know that FAKI IS ONE LARGER THAN LIFE KIND OF PERSONA. aND SHE’s a super achiever! This is why we brought you her story, to get you inspired, and remind you to stop limiting your goals and dimming your shine. For Faki shines, and she does it really well. So yes, Subscribe, and come back here next Thursday to get yourself some inspiration. Find Faki On Instagram HERE, and The Lunkuse Initiative HERE. Enjoy more pictures of Faki below!