No Matter Where Your Wings Take You, Home Is Where Your Roots Are

November 7, 2018

My name is Abdinasir Mohamud Abdillah. I was born and brought up in the UAE but my family has their roots in Somalia. I was schooled in the UAE and whenever my expat friends spoke about their home country I realised I had no memories, no stories to share about Somalia. My first visit to Somalia was when I was 23 years old. The moment I landed in Somalia, I felt a deep sense of belonging even though it was my first time in the country.

Media reports about Somalia always talk about the menace of pirates, the strife caused by the civil war and the extreme poverty. Let me tell you the Somalia I saw is a very rich country. The seas are overflowing with tuna; Somalia soil is rich in uranium, petrol and gas. Somalia is one of the few countries abundantly blessed with camels and other species of animals. If only my people believed they are rich and used their resources well, the world would see a different side of Somalia. Till I visited Somalia, I was very happy leading a comfortable life in the UAE. I had taken the comforts and peaceful surroundings of the UAE for granted but my trip to Somalia opened my eyes to the reality that my people were living a life that lacked in opportunities, peace and abundance.

I want to bring about a change in Somalia. Some people call me crazy for thinking that I would able to bring about a change; but I see hope among the youngsters. My cousins and their friends who live in Somalia use social media channels and they aspire for a better life. Within the homes of Somalia, mothers play a pivotal role in shaping the future of their children. I want to reach out to the mothers and educate them about the opportunities that exist for their children. My mother always tells me, "My generation destroyed Somalia; your generation should rebuild Somalia." My roots, my history and my home belong to Somalia and that is where I will return very soon. I am positive I will be able to transform the lives of my people, even if it is in a small way.

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