Sanah, 18 – FUNDED

Sanah Jivani is out to change the world. A student at the University of Texas-San Antonio, she’s overcome bullying and learned to embrace self-love. As a winner of our first 1,000 Dreams Fund Challenge, she’s taking her grant money to travel so that she can share her message of empowerment and acceptance to young women around the country. We caught up with Sanah to talk about her journey to end self-doubt one person at a time.

What is your dream?

Life is unpredictable. I don’t know where I’ll be ten years from now, or even ten days from now. I do know, however, that I will never stop doing what I love. My professional dream is to keep my passion alive. I want to use every opportunity I can to share my story and inspire individuals who are facing similar struggles. I want to work to make the world a better place. I dream that I can make an impact on the world through hard work, dedication and endless amounts of passion. I want to be a writer, a public speaker, a dreamer and a change-maker.

How will you use the funding you received from the #1000DreamsChallenge?

The funding I received from the 1,000 Dreams Challenge will make a major difference in my journey. I will use this funding to further the pursuit of my dreams. Specifically, I’m going to use my funds to travel around the world, public speaking and sharing my story. I want schools to create a curriculum focused around confidence and empowerment, and I will work hard to make that happen.

How is this helping you get closer to your dream? 

This is helping in so many ways. Without funds, I wouldn’t be able to travel and amplify my story on a whole new level. Public speaking and sharing my story is what I love and dream to do for the rest of my life. This is a single and extremely important step in my journey, and I’m grateful that the 1,000 Dreams Fund is making this all possible.

What advice do you have for other young women looking to go for their dreams?

Dream big. One of my biggest dreams is to start an international holiday in every country around the globe. To learn more about this dream, visit www.internationalnaturalday.com. I’ve had people laugh at this dream and say it’s too big and even impossible. I believe that if your dreams don’t scare you a bit, you’re not dreaming big enough. Shoot for the stars. As long as YOU believe something is possible, it is.

My second piece of advice would be to never give up. Stay passionate and persistent. Keep pushing for your dreams to come true, and they will.

Any setbacks? How did you get around them?

When I was in the seventh grade, I lost all of my hair to a condition called Alopecia. At first, I was absolutely devastated. With every strand of hair, I lost a strand of confidence, until I was left with nothing. Eventually, I learned that I had the power to take control of my life. I started learning to love myself. I built up the courage to go without my wig and share my story. Since then, my life has changed forever.

One thing I’ve learned is that in life, everyone faces challenges. No one’s journey is easy. It’s how we face these challenges that make us who we are. I got around my obstacles by facing my challenges with courage and persistence. It hasn’t always been easy, but with courage and passion, anything is possible.

What’s next for you?

I hope to continue doing the work that I do. I never want to stop working in the non-profit world. I never want to stop helping others and sharing my story. I will never let my voice be silenced. For now, I am in college and I have the amazing opportunity to get an education. My next goal is to use the things that I am learning to make an even bigger difference in the world.