- Title: Kouakou Jean-Desire: From Not Having a Computer to Loving Digital Marketing
- Written by: Mirabelle Morah
- Description: The story of 22-years young Kouakou Jean-Desire Kouassi from West Africa tells his amazing adventures on his digital journey.
- This feature story was originally published on BlankPaperz
Kouakou Jean-Desire Kouassi is a 22 years old young man who lives in Bouaké, Côte d’Ivoire. He’s passionate about Digital and New Technologies and is currently the CEO of Communication & Network Corporation. He’s also a Country Representative for Chatham House for the Common Future Conversations Project.
MY ADVENTURE INTO THE DIGITAL WORLD IS THE MANIFESTATION OF A LOVE FOR NON-STOP DISCOVERY
“It all started when I got into High School. I used to accompany my elder sister who was learning how to use the computer since our father registered her in a training center. Once there, I was not admitted to follow the class, so I was just waiting for her outside imagining what was going on inside. One day, my elder sister invited me to a cybercafé where she would go to, for further practice. That was the very time I got to touch a computer, she let me touch it, turn it on and I was able to make some clicks. From that day, my dreams became a reality. Even though I did not have access to it daily, I was reading and learning about how computers worked. And things were like this till I got into University.
“Once at the university, I focused on learning the English Language to become a better translator, but I still had my dream in mind. It was in this process that I got the privilege to join a fellowship, “International Christian Students Fellowship”. My first position there was to be an Interpreter-Translator from French to English (Vice versa). As time went on, the Founding Fathers approached me and told me, “you are no more a translator, you are now in charge of the Communication Department of the Institution.” Even though I saw it as a way to accomplish my dreams, that was a big challenge for me because I was not skilled at all and this was totally new to me.”
“But I had to overcome this challenge. The first problem I faced was that I did not have a computer, so I was obligated to go to friends, either early in the morning or late in the night to not only train myself but also to deliver assigned tasks (making designs, advertisement, online branding, etc.). After few months of intensive self-training marked by all-night learning and practices, squatting in rooms and sharing computers, I got some progress and I was able to make a poster and some flyers for our concert! And I got my first computer! This was the beginning of an endless passion for the digital world.”
THE DISCOVERY OF MY LOVE: SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
“As life went on, I fell in love with Social Media Marketing. This universe really impacted me. I focused my attention on Social Media Marketing. I started creating my own personal branding, and afterward, I started working on the branding of the Institution I was working with. It was a daily discovery full of breakdowns and breakthroughs. 2016 was for me, the turning point of my immersion in this new world! I was selected for an International program called Global People Summit, a summit aiming at Youth Advocacy for change and sustainable communities and it was a program supported by the United Nations. I got the privilege to see my tweet displayed at the UN Conference since it was a live chat! Since that day, everything started coming one another! And I am making my way in this new world!”
MY COMMUNITY FIRST
“In December 2018, after participating into an exchange program YALI (Young African Leadership Initiative), I set an Organization (Communication & Network Corporation) that aims at training Youth on Digital Ethics and Digital use for sustainability, in Pre-urban and rural areas. It is a daily passion and happiness to see hundreds of young girls and boys being involved in digital promotion and being digitally educated for free. I am also a brand owner of “Heaven is the Purpose — Sky is no more a limit”. All my dreams are becoming real!”
MY ADVICE TO THE YOUTH
See what James Okina does for street children, Wadi Ben-Hirki just like Jean-Desire is also a Common Futures Conversation Representative in Nigeria and she’s working with marginalized women and children. Read about CNN African Voices’ Arit Okpo who wants to tell stories and make documentaries.