Souda Kariko is a 21-year-old model from the Netherlands. She is currently signed to The Movement Models in Amsterdam. Souda has been featured in magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar and has modelled for brands such as Monki and Filling Pieces.
Name: Souda Kariko
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
I always wanted to be a doctor so that I could help people. My dream was to finish med school in order to become a nurse and move to Somalia but eventually, I discovered that I had a passion for photography.
Who were your biggest role models growing up?
My biggest role model growing up was my mother. She overcame so many struggles while being a refugee but she still managed to build a stable household for us. I also loved Iman Abdulmajid a lot and I still consider her a big inspiration.
What is one thing that you would like to tell your younger self?
Life is a journey, enjoy the ride.
What was a life-changing moment you experienced that shaped you into the woman that you are today?
I had a rough childhood and was struggling with depression for most of my teenage years. In order to cope, I prayed and put all my struggles in the hands of Allah.
What made you pursue your current career?
My passion! I love the way you can tell a story in a picture. I also love meeting new people.
What is a typical day like for you?
On a working day, I wake up around 08:00am and I travel to the set. As soon as I arrive, I get in hair and make-up. A normal shooting day lasts about 8 hours. When I’m done shooting, I usually go out to eat with some friends in Amsterdam before I head home.
What has been the biggest obstacle in your professional life so far and how did you manage to overcome it?
My height. I’m only 1.65cm and officially one of the smallest models working in the Netherlands. Luckily, most of my clients are pushing for diversity in the modelling industry so they don’t mind my height.
Which Somali woman inspires you and why?
Iman Abdulmajid. If I didn’t have her to look up to, I would probably not have had the courage to enter this industry. She’s a feminist and a muse.
What advice would you give to a person pursuing your chosen career?
To not give up. I’ve been modelling for 5 years now and I’m still not where I want to be. Invest your time and believe in yourself.
How would you like people to remember you?
I’d like people to remember me for my energy and as a girl who stuck up for her rights. Also as being a creative soul.