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Ghana Heroes: Zainab Yetunde, Restaurant Manager & Consultant

In this edition of Unsung Heroes, we enjoyed being served with the wealth of knowledge in Restaurant Manager and Consultant, Zainab Yetunde. Zainab is a Nigerian, currently settled in Accra Ghana and working towards her dream of becoming a Food Entrepreneur, training and creating opportunities and access for black people in the food industry (we guess this is what happens when you drive through a career based on caring for people). Zainab recognizes that a huge part of her success story stems from having the right access and encourages Africans to unite in providing access to fellow black people, thereby creating a society open to endless possibilities. In her words, “Mentorship is hugely important because representation matters. Having ambitions and seeing and learning from someone who has accomplished them instills a certain confidence in you that your dreams can be achieved.” She shares that mentors are buffers who protect the next generation in their field and teach them to overcome hurdles they faced while getting ahead. Climbing the ladder of the Food/Restaurant industry wasn’t a simple feat. Zainab shared with us how the perception of most people in the West about Africans (especially ones trained in Africa), has not really changed. She had to deal with proving herself more than her counterparts, ignore the hesitation she observed — despite her qualifications, when employers heard that she was Nigerian, and reach for her dreams. “Employers usually take Africans who were trained or have a Western background more seriously than those trained in Africa — who are treated as subpar employees and because these employers presume that such people lack the skill set that their Western counterparts have. So, it’s always a struggle coming from this part of the world and going out to work there. I’ve had opportunities because I was trained in the West compared with people who were trained in African local universities.” She explained. To this, Zainab was quick to offer a solution. She advised Africans to acquire as much skills that they can — even outside the corporate world, recondition ourselves to be global competitors than regional ones (packaging matters 🎁!)

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