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The Somalian, the Bangladeshi and the Canadian By Kim

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As a Lecturer at Sur University College (Oman), I always presented professionally. However, after five years, I had closets full of beautiful outfits well beyond my 2-suitcase allowance for travel. So, I packed several boxes and phoned my Universiti Sains Malaysian Prof. She gave me Abdukadir’s mobile number, and told me to call him. He agreed to receive my boxes.

Abdukadir and I became friends from the moment we spoke on the phone, though we were as different as possible. My delight at finally meeting this handsome young man occurred when he showed up at my condo in Kuala Lumpur (KL), carrying several large and awkward boxes of my clothing.

As Abdukadir and I worked our way through our Masters at USM, his in Sustainable Development, and mine in Integrated Marketing Communications, we often met, until he returned to Somalia. While at home in Mogadishu, Kadir began thinking about opening an Institute that would assist in answering the needs of his people.

As a result of our remaining in contact, I began consulting for him and we came up with an ABCD (Asset Based Community Development) approach. Last month, Abdulkadir’s ABCD Samale Institute was officially registered.

Naveel and I shared many classes at USM because we were both studying for a Masters of Marketing Communication (IMC). He often contributed to engaging class discussions, and because I too was a part of the discussions, we became friends. When we took coffee together, our conversation rarely left the topic of Marketing based on a shared love of the discipline. We maintained contact after KL. Because Naveel is an expert in SPSS, a software platform for data analysis, I consulted him often on the questionnaires I was working on.

I realized I trusted these two young men implicitly, and I put forth the idea of our collaboration. It was an exciting moment; as quickly as we agreed on the business idea, we decided to focus on Kadir’s Samale Institute, first.  Visit

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