Meet TK Azaglo, a Ghanaian who studied and worked in Canada but chose to leave it all behind and return to his country. The elephant question at this point is why? Why would this young intelligent individual leave his stable and comfortable future behind in a first world country to return to live in a struggling developing one? The answer, unlike on a Linear Algebra exam, is simple. He went back to serve people which is in essence what he believes leadership to be. The serving leader some might call him. When asked how he would describe what he is doing, TK humbly said, “Helping young people discover their purpose. This basically speaks to helping people see what they can do to improve the life of others and enhance the standard of living within their community. If you are able to add value to someone’s life that impacts how they live, think, and feel, that is exactly what it all boils down to”.
Additionally, he went on to say something even more potent. A line which challenges the common school of thought when it comes on to making a difference. “We are not called to change the world but rather, we are called to change our worlds”. Quite often we render ourselves useless because we only seeing changing the world as making a difference and not inciting change within our own context. This is fundamentally where change is to begin and that is, within your little world which thus leads to a phenomenon similar to the domino effect. Some social activists say this is the only way we can change our planet for the better.
TK’s work extends even deeper. He, with his organization called ‘Future of Africa’ (FOA); instills belief where there is a lack thereof, improves access to opportunities and resources, makes relationships more meaningful while establishing community support networks. The efforts of FOA focuses a great deal on breaking the destructive poverty cycle which he highlights street children as being the root. He has found ingenious ways of getting university students to invest their time and energies in feeding, caring, supporting and pushing these kids to achieve their full potential which is at the moment is yielding great credible results.
“How does this benefit you?” I asked. “Fulfillment and happiness” was all he had to say. Life is about much more than the tangibles we all strive to achieve in this materialistic society. He went on to state that the reason he is doing this is because he wants to be like the man who transformed the world, Jesus. He wants to be able to transform his own world through a kind of leadership defined only through serving. A long term vision is imperative to the success of any organization, even non-profit ones. TK said his vision for FOA after 10 years is to have a movement established in which young people can join and freely live out their purpose.
In concluding, TK had this advice for youth out there with immense potential, “The biggest thing that made my life different was discovering my purpose. Young people are trapped by expectations of society; school, job, making money. There is more to life than that. Invest and discover your purpose. Pursue opportunities to put people ahead. Do things that will solve the social problems around you and not just things that will solve your problems.”
TK Azaglo, the Ghanaian dedicated to changing his world….