Asians in Britain
Asians in Britain (AIB) is a platform that I created back in March 2018. Having lived in the U.K. for the past 10+ years, I have observed how Asians in the U.K. are seen as a homogenised group of people despite our diverse cultural backgrounds, religions, languages, and food, etc. People also tend to look down on Asians or make assumptions about us based on how we look.
When I was in Bristol for high school, I remember people, especially teachers, used to make passing comments like: “No offence, but English is not your first language, so you might find English literature a very challenging subject” or “No offence, this is too well-written, are you sure you wrote this?”
On top of that, I’ve also realised there’s not only a lack of Asian representation on screen or in the media, but also a lack of platforms for Asians to share ideas. This was why I felt the need to create some sort of space for Asians to share their stories and experiences in hopes to amplify Asian voices while also empowering and inspiring younger generations.
Interviewing so many different talented, inspiring, and hardworking Asians, who are not only successful in the financial or science fields, but also in the creative industry, was eye-opening to me.
I also have to thank my amazing team whom I met along the way that has made AIB what it is today. To make this a little more interactive, below is what my team has to say! I promise I didn’t bribe them!
“Asians in Britain is a place that is very close to my heart. First of all, it’s about aspirations and breaking out of the mould. It’s a place to have your own story laid out, and told how it is. Asian people are often seen as quiet and less vocal; I wanted to be part of something which breaks those stereotypes. When I first met Steph, I was being interviewed and we had a mutual friend who suggested we hit each other up. Next thing you know, fast forward a year later, I was growing with my photography and I wanted to give back to something which gave me a lot of warmth and encouragement.
My aspirations for 2020 is to keep doing what we’re doing, develop quality content, and see the fruits of our labour. I’d love to organise a fundraiser or an event involving Asians in Britain! That would be the dream.
One word to describe AIB is community.”
“Asians in Britain provides a platform for people to share their stories of success and struggles. It’s a community for people to be open and positively engage with others. For me, it’s important to have diversity and create a strong community for people to find inspiration, courage, and comfort. I joined Asians in Britain because I think I am able to help this community grow and give people a chance to share their stories. It’s important for people to have a place where they can share their experiences and thrive in a community with similar backgrounds.”
“I joined AIB because the mission of creating a network to support Asians and enable their smooth transition into the cultural and social constructs of the new place they immigrate to, resonates with me.
To me, Asians in Britain celebrates a sense of belonging to the Asian community and a platform where inspiring stories, culture, and positive assimilation are shared.
My aspirations in 2020 for Asians in Britain is to push for more diverse stories. To help grow a safe community that touches on different types of success and struggles which in-turn will help people to engage with each other.”
“I joined AIB because I love the idea of being able to share stories of people from different backgrounds in the British-Asian community. There’s often the misconception that Asian culture is very rigid and it’s time for that to change. The careers that are considered respectable shouldn’t be confined to only: doctors, lawyers, and bankers. We want to showcase how diverse the British-Asian community really is and how future generations could make use of their talents in many different types of careers.
Asians in Britain means so much to me. I’ve been able to network with so many types of people with different passions and have this platform showcase and share what they have to say. A lot of people out there can relate to the hardships that we go through as Asians in Britain.
I hope to invite even more people to be a part of this community!”
Since starting Asians in Britain, quite a few people have asked me how I envision AIB in the future. Other than wanting to create a platform to uplift Asian voices, I have always wanted to create a mentorship programme where I would be able to use the network we have built to help youths in building their careers and inspiring them to pursue their dreams.
We have now also launched our very own podcast called High Expectations (sorry! shameless plug) where we explore certain topics on a deeper level. Especially in light of COVID-19 racism and the Black Lives Matter movement, we believe that now more than ever is the time to speak up and ensure that our voices are not silenced.