I had something of an Epiphany today as often is the case after a long double shift. Not many people realise this but I actually have a full time job outside of what I also do with Untold, Fashion Diversity and my design work which has taken a serious back seat for the last couple of years. I am also a trustee of a Charity based in Southwark and sit on the Lambeth Enterprise Board and am committed to at least 2 other projects which will remain nameless for now.
I am a true believer in making things happen hence the organisation, its aspirations and the fact that it still exists nearly three years later without funding, sponsorship or otherwise. I do feel despondent sometimes however when people fail to grasp that the vision is bigger than just me as an individual. In founding Untold, it was an answer to a problem I encountered and saw others facing also, lack of opportunity, funds and a closed doors attitude in an industry where raw talent simply isn't enough.
Far from being the person who complains and feels defeated and demoralised I did a lot of soul searching and made a call to action. I have never shied away from hard work and ever since I could legally work I have been in employment of some description pragmatism for me is essential. The journey was never a short one and was always going to be a winding road with many twists and turns, however it was never an option not to embark upon it. My ethos as some will know is to be a leader and not a follower. Everything started somewhere from Sainsburys to the Bank of England someone had to turn the vision into reality and find the people to share in that vision and take it to fruition. But as I sit here writing this, I ask how much of myself can I give?
Yes, I chose to embark on the journey and I galvanised the troops found the talent and enlisted the support, but at the end of the day is it still a one woman band? I haven't dared add up or account for the personal sacrifices and investment I have put into this over the last three years, to give you an idea, whatever you're thinking keep adding the zeros then times by 10! But to what end I ask myself, is there a real need, or did I just imagine there was, as I see it everyone else around benefits from it but I feel creatively repressed and continue to sink my energy and finance into something which appears a thankless endeavour.
The company was incorporated in 2008 as a Community Interest Company the key was the 'Community' the strength in numbers of the countless creatives who roam the world with stories left Untold the vision came with such clarity of mind that it had to be right but will it end up being the cross that I alone bear....?
Sometimes the hardest thing is to know when to step away and admit that the current journey has ended and a new one is due to begin. The story is always the same, few people appreciate things whilst they are there and functioning but everyone has an opinion when it has gone- so I ask the question, how will Untold survive without the support of the Community it is set up to serve?