Matthew C. Martino
Harlow, Essex, UK
CEO at Essex TV
Founder of MMBF Trust
“I think with the right support and resources a lot of young people would stay off the streets and work harder.”
-Matthew. C. Martino
Twenty-three year old Matthew C. Martino is a truly impressive young Zimbassador who is the Co-Chair of international arts charity MMBF Trust and the current Chief Executive of local Essex channel – Essex TV. Winner of the 2015 edition of the Essex Young People of the Year Awards, Matthew is the founder and benefactor of the international charity MMBF Trust, a foundation that funds young actors and filmmakers.
Matthew’s father got a job in England and in 2005 the family moved together to start a new life there. Living not from far from London in Harlow, Essex, Matthew echoes the advice of other Zimbassadors abroad in saying that flexibility and an open mind vital for survival when you’re living abroad.
“You need to realise that their way of life is different from that of back home.”
Now focused on film financing and app brokering, Matthew believes his biggest success so far has been launching his charity MMBF Trust.
“I’m honoured to see the changes we have brought in many lives – just last year we distributed 297 grants and scholarships towards the arts. For me it’s my single biggest achievement to date.”
In all of his successes including winning the Essex Young Person of the Year awards in 2015, a challenge faced again and again is the adjustment to a whole new way of life. On arrival in a new country it was important to acclimate
“…trying to build new friendships and adjust my aspirations as I was in a different environment all together.”
Making the most of his opportunities and maximising his exposure abroad, Matthew had the wonderful opportunity to go the Houses of Parliament.
“It was magical, so much history! I couldn’t pronounce half the names of the historic faces and events documented around the building.”
Always giving back, Matthew also financially supported the site zimguide.com which gives comprehensive tourism information about Zimbabwe. Although he has not been back to Zimbabwe in half a decade, he truly believes in the contributions that he and other Zimbabweans abroad can make even from afar.
“I feel like Zimbabweans abroad are doing their best to represent the homeland, there are some actors, musicians, business people and politicians who are conquering and representing Zimbabwe across the world.”
Matthew is ready to contribute by bringing his business experience and encouraging enterprise for the rebuilding of Zimbabwe
“I would personally welcome an opportunity to drive young enterprise and raise aspirations amongst young people. I also feel my knowledge within the film/TV industry could be very useful for the country, Africa has a great pool of talent who just need to be discovered.”
With his eagerness to reconnect back to Zimbabwe and use his skills and knowledge and connections, Matthew shows the promising future of the involvement of younger members of the diaspora who have been abroad for a significant amount of their lives.
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