Marina Mansilla Hermann is a young social entrepreneur specialising in the fields of youth leadership, environment and education. She is the founder of TierraVida, a youth-empowerment non-profit based in Argentina with the mission to activate young people as environmental leaders in their communities. She currently manages Ashoka’s Changemaker Education and Changemaker Schools network across Europe. Marina is an Abram Wilson Foundation Trailblazer.
How did you first hear about the Abram Wilson Foundation (AWF)?
A friend in the social entrepreneurship world introduced me to Jennie [AWF’s founder and CEO] back in April 2015 so I could help her connect with education networks in London. I was so inspired that I’ve been a supporter ever since.
What made you want to get involved?
I got involved for a number of different reasons. I found something truly inspiring and powerful in the story that gave birth to AWF, something that could have been the end of a story actually transmuted into something beautiful, and the beginning of a new story. I love what the foundation is trying to achieve – giving young people from the most underprivileged backgrounds the opportunity to discover and explore their creative selves, and supporting young artists in their early stages of their careers when they are are struggling to get into the artistic world.
I also had an unexplored curiosity for jazz – I had never been properly exposed to it and I have heard from so many people who loved it and I wanted to understand why, like so many things in life (I’m also trying to understand ultra-marathoners with no luck!). Since getting involved with the AWF I have developed a love for jazz, started following Kansas Smitty’s to most of their gigs and incidentally even had the chance to go to New Orleans. Jazz playlists are now my default music at home, but I have learnt to appreciate the music in a different way, discover new artists and a whole new group of people and places that I find so interesting.
The invites to some really magical jazz nights in London and having the chance to share it with different groups of friends, as well as having the opportunity to meet interesting people. I love how jazz brings together a community of likeminded people.
Being a Trailblazer is a no-brainer! Your chance to become popular amongst your friends for bringing them along to the most special night out in London – while making a difference in the world. It’s the best value for money ever!
Do you have a favourite memory from AWF?
Incidentally running into different random and old friends – over and over again – almost by an act of magic, in the same place, all brought together by a belief in AWF’s vision and a love of jazz!
Another one is having the band cheered back on stage after the end of the show, when all their musical instruments had already being packed away to play one more song, which happened to be nothing less but my favourite song ever (and the first one I’m learning to play on my first ever piano). It had been a difficult day – and that gift completely turned it around.
Become an Abram Wilson Foundation Trailblazer and join our jazz family today to support emerging talent and improve access to the arts, while enjoying free invites, exclusive offers and discounts to some of the most swinging jazz gigs in town!