Writer: Davion Ziere | 4/11/18
My Childhood Motivation: WHY?
As a child, I always sought after purpose. My purpose. Life’s purpose. The purpose of institutions like school and government. I often asked: why do people do what they do?
Before I attended 9th grade in the Bay Area at 12 years old, I had been to 10 different schools across the United States in states ranging from California to Mississippi. I even traveled to Europe, V.I. and South Africa.
In each of these spaces, I inquired into people’s “why” and I discovered that many people do what they do due to feeling like they “have to” and that it was not realistic to pursue the calling in their hearts. I was astonished that people of all ages (from elementary youth to the elderly) across the world expressed that they lived their lives the way they did because they felt like they had no other choice.
“Things just are what they are.” “My dreams don’t make money.” “I can’t make a living off my passions.”
These remarks never sat well with me because my family always told me that there is no such thing as “can’t.” In fact, my mother ripped it out of the dictionary and would pop me anytime I uttered such an expression.
Here I was: a child, without a belief in impossibility, navigating a world full of people who had submitted to the idea that it was unrealistic to go after the undeniable urges to explore what more the world has to offer. And even worse: the undeniable urge to explore what we have to offer to the world.
So, then I asked myself: what can I do? Why does this matter so much to me? It is technically none of my business and I may never see most of these people again. I could easily use my brain, self-belief and creativity to serve myself and grow to be whatever I want to be. And yet, I cared so much that I went to sleep and awoke everyday with the same question on my mind: what can I do?
My Teenage Motivation: The Dream
My mission became clear when I was 13 and I had a vivid dream of an island where there was a functioning civilization with no money and people were happy. Everyone made meaningful contributions to the society by doing what they loved and exchanging with others. Painters painted. Doctors were doctors because they loved finding better ways to care for people. Teachers taught because they loved educating. Musicians made music. Chefs cooked because they loved caring for others…
Life was simple. There were challenges, as there always are. However, the challenges were simpler to overcome because everyone’s outlook on life was rooted in their passion and motivation to give to the world around them. And the world gave in return.
I rose from this dream and knew that I needed to build a bridge to this world. This passionate reality that many people would say is impossible. But I do not believe in impossible and “many” people have always said that the possible is impossible.
And so my work began: since I was 13, I have sought to do two things: to live with passion loving what I do and to build bridges to a world for others to do what they love.
The mission is simple: to bridge the gaps between aspiration and accomplishment.
My Teenage Solutions: Bridging Gaps
From 13-16, I attended 3 different high schools and in each community I lived in, I worked tirelessly to find ways to fulfill my mission. Working with my home church in Oakland, CA (East Oakland Faith Deliverance Center), the U.S. House of Representatives and national organizations such as the Children’s Defense Fund, I spearheaded pipeline programs to connect inner-city kids like me to professionals who were passionate doing what they did in diverse fields.
While working with my community, I learned that most of us are impacted by a few simple barriers that cause us to live in fear of failure and reject the drive in our hearts:
- Lack of Resource Access and Awareness
- Lack of Community
- Lack of Knowledge on how to get from Aspiration to Accomplishment
- Pyramid Hierarchies
- Lack of Platforms that encourage Self-Belief
My College Years: Being an Artist and Creating Community Around Creating
At 16, I started Emory University in Atlanta, GA. At that point, I made my own passions of music and content creation a stronger priority. While at one of America’s “Top 20” universities, I learned that students there were also inclined to believe that making a living doing what they love was not possible. While I progressed as an artist and creator (releasing an album, being featured in USA Today, Karmaloop, NBC and more), I was admired and criticized for pursuing my passion. I didn’t let either feedback influence my decisions or work flow because these were the same reactions I saw in communities before I began college. Instead, I continued creating. I created so much that I attracted other creators to come together and we built a community called C.O.R.E. Culture Group. The purpose of C.O.R.E. was to empower one another to thrive in the careers we willed for ourselves. Today, everyone who is a part of C.O.R.E. still does what they love, they do it well, and they are gaining the financial sustenance to make a living.
Out of the C.O.R.E. Community, Culturebase was born:
I wondered how we could rapidly replicate the success of the C.O.R.E. community in cities everywhere. That’s when I had an epiphany: in order to rapidly replicate the C.O.R.E. community in other cities globally, I would need to use modern mobile applications and technology. That’s when Culturebase was born.
Culturebase is a P2P application that serves as an ecosystem for independent creators to thrive no matter what city we live in or are traveling to.
It instantly connects creators to the People, Places, Events, Opportunities and Cultures in your city. It enables direct exchange and expands trade options: Buy/Sell/Trade/Share/Gift and allows for creators to house multiple portfolios on their profiles.
Culturebase is built with the intent to lower barriers to participate and succeed as independent creators. Once creators have been onboarded, we will expand this ecosystem to serve local consumers and city tourists by connecting them to the creators and cultures in their area. This means that local economies will be Peer to Peer and more creators will be empowered to gain visibility and thrive wherever we are.
So, why Culturebase? Because it is the HOW after my WHY led me to my life-long mission.
And because I believe it is a great step towards the best future for people to be able to do what they love for a living.
Stay Up to Date
Gain access to new blogs, new app updates, new cities that Culturebase is in, etc. by signing up here [insert link]