Binta Badjie | The Gambia
What do you do in your home country and what do you hope to do upon your return? In particular, with the integration of your experiences here?
I am a disability rights activist. I am also in social entrepreneurship, with special focus on deaf women. I also advocate for the education equity of deaf children. I believe that every human must have equal opportunity. I am the first deaf woman in Gambia with a bachelors degree. I believe that education is very valuable, and for me as well. So, I want to use my education to empower others, especially deaf people. I believe that deaf people are just like everyone else, so my goal is to work hard and bring change to my country.
I want to take everything that I have learned here back home. This program has trained me to be more confident in the areas that I work in and build on my confidence. It has given me more exposure, and I feel that this will help me make other people have more respect for me and hear my voice, give me the opportunity to express myself. I think that that will help me with my work.
What is your favorite thing about your home country? How about Philadelphia?
My favorite thing about Gambia is our hospitality, in fact the world knows my country as the smiling coast.
My favorite thing about Philadelphia is the privacy. I can walk out on the streets without people judging me. I can feel comfortable with walking around the city.
Do you have any hobbies or an interesting fact you wish to share about yourself?
My hobby is collecting books, particularly about history – legal, political and historic stories. I also enjoy visiting museums and other historical places.
If I were to come to your home country, what is the first thing I should eat?
Domoda, it is a rich peanut sauce. It can be cooked with meat, fish, chicken, and is served with rice and vegetables.