Ali Issa Ousmane
When Ali first arrived in Hong Kong in 2017, he didn’t know anyone in the city. Since then, he has built a strong network around himself and has come to love Hong Kong just as much as his home. He has a passion to help young people whom he believes are the hope for the future.
Hong Kong has proven to be a very welcoming home to Ali, and he was keen to reciprocate. In September 2018, when Typhoon Mangkhut devastated Hong Kong, Ali was one of many members of the community that worked to clear the debris.
Since arriving in Hong Kong, Ali taught himself English and conversational Cantonese, adding those to many other languages he speaks such as French and Arabic. He is an active member of the Africa Center Hong Kong, an organization dedicated to connecting Africans and Chinese communities. In addition, he is also part of the Wandering Voice, an advocacy group for minorities, refugees and asylum seekers in Hong Kong, and he visits and speaks at universities and secondary schools to teach on global citizenship, African cultures and raise awareness about asylum seekers. Ali is also part of Global Youth Connect and Learning Together, which helps asylum seekers, refugees and new arrivals adjust to Hong Kong.
Ali believes that youth education is the key to ideological change, which in turn leads to the transformation of a society. When Ali still lived in his home country, his group of friends would use the medium of theater to raise awareness of social issues. One of their main focus areas was on education for girls, because a large percentage of young girls are married off before being able to finish schooling. Their group also advocated on behalf of a girl who was a victim of rape, which opened Ali’s eyes to the stigma that surrounds gender-based violence.
In the future, Ali would like to create an organization that makes presentations around the world and raises awareness about social justice issues. In particular, he is passionate about the issue of youth labor exploitation, where young people are abused and exploited in their first jobs because they do not know better and are too ashamed to speak up about it. Ali would like to help them overcome their shame and stand up for themselves.
Sky Siu, Mentor of Ali
Executive Director of KELY Support Group