“Fathers are the ones who can either destroy their families or make it a happy home. As fathers, we are responsible for our children, and what we teach them is how they will live.” — Albert Jumbe
All too often, we hear about people who give up on life with the excuse that they were dealt a bad hand. Very rarely, we come across people who manage to get past the rough upbringing, learn from the negative experiences and manage to emerge as a rare diamond.
Albert Jumbe never felt what it was like to be raised by his own father, yet it inspired his dream of someday becoming the best father he could possibly be. Today, he’s a living proof that being a father isn’t a skill you are born with or that you can learn from others, but it is more of a personal journey — something that you learn over time and experience. We are so proud of the man Albert has become! In our conversation with him he opens up about his past and touches on his words of advice for a better future. We present all the best parts of that interview here!
Asante Africa: Can you tell us about your family and upbringing?
Albert: I am from the Singida Region, which is the Central part of Tanzania. My father abandoned my mother when she was pregnant and refused to acknowledge me as his child because she was from a poor family. I was raised solely by my mother.
Despite the odds, my mother managed to raise me and my two sisters. I was also able to go to school and later to college, where I studied to become a tour operator. I run a Safari Tours company now.
Asante Africa: What lessons have you learned from your men role models — uncles & any other men you admire?
Albert: I learned to protect my wife and children, and to work hard to provide them with what they need. I make sure that my wife is safe from anyone who might want to take advantage of her or look down upon her. I have learned to love and discipline my children.
Asante Africa: What experiences influenced your views on how you would raise your own children?
Albert: I lived a horrible life on the streets and always admired families where there was love. This is what I wanted for my children — to bring them up in a loving family.
Asante Africa: You are considered a role model for your and many of Asante Africa’s kids. What are the things you would like them to learn from you?
Albert: I want the kids to know that there are people who love us, even if they are not from our own families. That even though we experience poverty, there is still hope and possibility to come out of it. Finally, they should always try their level best since there is always a way and a better life ahead.
Asante Africa: In your experience, what does it take to be a good father?
Albert: It is a feeling that comes to you over time. Growing up, I saw my step father beat my mother and saw her suffer. After everything I saw in my family and community, I promised myself that I will always take care of my wife and children.
Asante Africa: If asked, what will your kids say they like and least like about you?
Albert: What they would say they like about me is that I am a loving and a supportive father. And so they can treat me as a friend. What they don’t like is that I am always asking them to be responsible and accountable for their mistakes. They’re not happy when I travel a lot for work and come home late.
Asante Africa: What are your favorite memories with your children?
Albert: When I touched my child Alpha for the first time in the hospital — she changed my life. That is my biggest memory.
Asante Africa: How do you spend time with your kids?
Albert: Whenever I have time, I always spend it with my family. I go out with my kids on holidays to strengthen my bond with them.
Asante Africa: What do you want your kids to grow up to be?
Albert: I want them to grow up to be responsible and accountable, to respect and love everyone, and to be able to touch peoples’ lives. I want them to achieve all their dreams.
Asante Africa: How has Asante Africa helped you in your life?
Albert: Asante Africa has made me a good man. They have taught me to share my life with people; to love, be respectful, and be very close to the community; to recognize the value in people.
I have also made very loving and supportive friends
Asante Africa: Any other thoughts you would like to share with fathers everywhere in the world?
Albert: Please take at least 10 minutes to think of what you will do to make this world a better place. We create problems when we don’t care. Fathers are the ones who can either destroy their families or make it a happy home. We are responsible for our children, and what we teach them is how they will live.