Africa, The Armed Forces, & Waste Collection
Growing Up in Southern Africa
I have early memories of walking with dad and a tracker through the bush, along sandy river banks amongst Mopane trees and Elephant Palm. A deep love of wild places, animals and nature was ingrained. Such was the way growing up in Zimbabwe, and my love for the great outdoors has never diminished, despite a leopard mauling and surviving an Indian Ocean tropical illness. Those stories are for another time.
I remember “playing Army” (there’s a long family military tradition) with my friends, and when older, living in beautiful Cape Town, going camping with mates in the Cederberg mountains or swimming in the open sea. I always found a way to mix my love of the outdoors, thirst for adventure, and love for soldiering and the camaraderie that goes with it into my life.
Relocating to the UK
After graduating from university with majors in psychology and social anthropology, my family relocated to the UK (granny grew up near Loughborough and my Nana was London born). I decided that I needed something big for my next chapter – something that would allow me to grow and know myself better.
The Medical Corps
I joined the British Army as a Combat Medical Technician and after basics settled in well, made lots of friends and proudly won an award for the top trainee in phase 2 trade training. As a young man who came to the UK knowing few people fitting in and building a local support base was a big thing. With the army I felt accepted and worked hard to earn the respect of my peers and superiors alike. Applying myself with dedication, and discipline, and taking on leadership skills military life invariably teaches, was no hardship.
As it often goes, good things must come to an end and after a particularly challenging deployment for a long period to an ICU ward during the peak of COVID, I realized that some of my experiences were beginning to take their toll on me. The support received from my superiors and the army was and still is incredible, and I shall always be grateful.
I decided to focus on my own well-being and began exploring different tools and practices to help me cope with some of the challenges I faced. One such practice was cleaning, decluttering, simplifying, living more and acquiring less. This attitude and habits, many learnt from my time with the medical corps, helped me organise my physical space but also had a positive impact on my mental clarity and focus.
My journey has led me to start KwikTip and life has handed me many experiences which have assisted the journey. I feel directly connected to daily processes which make a great social and environmental impact. KwikTip indirectly cares for those “wild places” so precious to me, and we are able to help other members of our Communities and Forces family with their own journeys in business and life.
Don’t sweat the small stuff – Tyler