By HAUWA INDIMI
At the Millennium Campus Conference, Energy Maburutse shared his tremendously heart-touching childhood story, expanding on where he is now in life and what “luck” means to him.
From Zimbabwe to the United States, Maburutse is the Ambassador of Millennium Campus Network. Maburutse is in his senior year at Lynn and has been an active member of the student body.
As one of the keynote speakers at the conference, Maburutse shared his life- story highlighting how being disabled made him feel excluded while growing up, but most importantly how all the conflict and finger-pointing did not stop him from succeeding.
Maburutse said he looks up to his mother because she was always there to lift his spirit and she never gave up on him or his future.
“During the times when everyone was turning their backs on her, she refused to turn her back on me,” said Maburutse.
He told the audience about the most important day of his life, when, at the age of seven, he was given the opportunity to attend school. Maburutse emphasized that it was important because on his first day of school, he had his first encounter with a wheelchair.
“Suddenly I was sitting in one of them and found myself happily rolling around the school non-stop,” he said.
Before then, Maburutse had no knowledge about the existence of wheelchairs.
In primary school, Maburutse discovered his musical talents and joined a group of friends, who created their own music band. During one of their shows, an American woman by the name of Elinor Burkett recognized their skills and expressed an interest in filming them for a documentary.
This came as a shock to Maburutse.
“To me, this sounded like she was making a joke,” said Maburutse. “But a few months down the line she brought back a camera crew and we shot a documentary which won the Oscar [for Best Documentary (Short Subject)] in 2010.”
Since then, a thousand doors of opportunity opened for Maburutse – his band was requested to fly to the United States and successfully performed in Brooklyn, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Boston.
Maburutse found himself mesmerized after each day by the new environment he was in and this new self-revelation.
“At this moment I was convinced that despite who I was or the way I looked, I could do anything,” said Maburutse. “I could even do better than anybody else. But let me take a minute and say that I am very grateful and mostly fortunate to have had all these blessings happen to me. But when I realistically look at it, most of it happened because of luck. To me, ‘luck’ is when opportunity meets one’s desire to be successful.”
Maburutse said although being pushed to do great things or being discovered from a nobody to becoming a somebody matters and having the opportunity to reveal who you are despite being unfortunate is the key.
“There are billions of individuals out there who are talented and way smarter than me but do not have the luck to have people who push them and believe in them like my mother and Elinor Burkett did,” said Maburutse.
Maburutse’s main message was to challenge humanity to create an environment where the poor can become independent and be able to create the same opportunities.