Journalism helped Rubadiri fit in after return from US

She advises misfits to celebrate their difference, while daring to shape the world around them

In Summary

• It turned her into a student of Kenyan people, language and peculiarities

Victoria Rubadiri
Victoria Rubadiri

Citizen TV anchor Victoria Rubadiri says it was hard for her to fit in after she returned from the US, but her career saved her.

Rubadiri, originally from Malawi, says trying to fit in has always been her struggle. In an Instagram post, Victoria admits it’s been her weakness.

"I guess it stemmed from that insecure 10-year-old Kenyan girl trying to find a place in this ‘New World’ called America. My ‘funny accent’ and ‘funny name’ would ensure my square peg would never fit in their round holes," she wrote.

When she returned to Kenya a decade ago after 14 years in the US, she was met with the same dilemma, this time trying to fit into a culture that was her own but so foreign.

"Again my ‘funny accent’ 😜and ‘funny name,’ (Rubadiri is Malawian) made sure of that. I realised the harder I tried to fit in, the louder my difference would scream," she said.

After struggling for a while, Victoria added that becoming a journalist right when she got back home helped her.

"It turned me into a student of my Kenyan people, language and peculiarities. Every story I told was a lesson. Each year I grew in my career, I accepted my ‘outsider’ tag a bit more and used it to my advantage," she said.

She started gaining a unique perspective on the world around her and tried to articulate that through storytelling. "Not having the comfort of ‘belonging’ kept me hungry to learn more and strive to tell a story as it is. It is a privilege to do what I do and give my audience a view of their world through my lens," she said.

Once she accepted she is terrible at fitting in and better off working on herself and her craft, that changed everything for her.

She advises the ‘outsiders’, the misfits, the quirky, awkward, quiet ones to always celebrate their difference, while daring to shape the world around them.