The great Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam once said, "Dream is not what you see in sleep, dream is something which doesn't let you sleep." No one can better understand the connotative message conveyed by these words than Yusuf Munna, a young social entrepreneur. His dream was big, grit enormous and determination rock-solid. And here he is today – he is a Diana Award receiver, an award that is conceived as the most prestigious accolade for a young person aged between 9-25 years.
At a very young age when boys and girls dream of bunking the school or roaming around with friends, Yusuf followed a different path. Inspired by the words 'Dare to Leap', he thought of doing something that will create ripples in the social arena and benefit the teenagers, who are often ostracized because of their age-centric eccentricities and behavioral changes. Just like realme, a youth-centric brand that is fixated on adding value to the lives of the young people in every way possible and encouraging them to take a leap in their lives to do something significant, Yusuf Munna took a leap in his life with some of his friends when he was an eighth grader and established 'Reflective Teens', a teen-based non-profit creative platform.
At an age when people remain busy with their studies, Yusuf founded an organization. Very naturally the beginning was not so easy. In his words, "As an aspiring writer, I tried to get my writings published in the national dailies on a number of occasions, but never succeeded just because of my age! I realized the loophole in the system when one of my initially-rejected works was later published because of a senior I approached who was known to the editor. Sitting in a cybercafé, I self-taught myself web designing and launched a platform solely for the teens. Over the years, the organization has established its position as 'the going' platform for teens to expose, incite and incubate their creative works."
Well, the young visionary thinks that when you are embarking on a journey that invites lots of obstacles in your way, you need to remain steadfast. Only dreaming about something is not enough, rather a determination to keep daring to stick to the cause is equally important. To do so, realizing the cause someone is working for is of paramount importance. Yusuf shared, "For anyone out there thinking about launching a non-profit, before anything you need to realize the cause. Do not start a non-profit for the sake of developing one, rather you need to feel the necessity of it. Only then, the non-profit will be meaningful and others will also feel your dedication. Try to make the non-profit cause-driven rather than title-driven. If you are young, never let your age daunt your confidence. Age does not define what you can or cannot do. Mistakes are inevitable, but learning from those mistakes is what you should master."
Yusuf learnt from his mistakes, fell down, but he dared to stand up again. Youth-favorite brand realme also inspires the youth to take such leaps in their lives and do their bit for social amelioration. And as far as Yusuf Munna's hard work is concerned, it has paid off duly. He has brought home a number of laurels for himself and the country. He appeared as a TEDx speaker in 2015. He was also included as an Ashoka Youth Venture, a global network recognizing influential social entrepreneurs, in 2017. He also represented Bangladesh in the Global Partnership Summit, 2017 in India, and the Ashoka Changemaker Exchange, 2018 in the Philippines as the very first Bangladeshi youth. And in 2021, he received the prestigious Diana Award for his contribution to the society.
Yusuf Munna feels that, the only thing someone needs for chasing the dream is the realization of the cause. If you feel the cause, want to see the changes and dare to take a leap, the path will reveal itself.
According to Canalys, realme also became the top smartphone maker in Bangladesh during Q2, 2021. Every year realme arranges Fan Fest, where they do various activities for their fans and every year during this event they share stories of the youth who dared to do something, followed their heart, unleashed their creativity and defied all odds to become successful.