Oliver, how did you get involved with modeling? Where are you based now?
My modeling career started way back in 2017 but kicked off after my miss Uganda title in 2019. I'm currently based in Dubai, UAE.
What was your first job as a model? How did it feel?
I focus on commercial modeling, and my first extensive campaign was a feature in the Louvre Abudhabi campaign in 2018. It was a dream job as I worked with diverse models worldwide to create the magic. It was an eye-opener campaign for me.
Besides modeling, what else are you passionate about? What are your hobbies?
I'm passionate about advocacy for women's and girls' rights, especially in Uganda. I've recently launched my foundation ( Oliver Nakakande Foundation) to carry on the work. I also enjoy fitness activities, and sports, especially basketball, and I'm currently playing on my university team in Dubai. I love to travel to discover new places, and I believe I'm a foodie ( good food). You'll find me at the beach catching the sunset on my free day.
Who is someone you feel has really influenced you? Why?
My Mom. She taught me all the essential values that have helped me navigate this crazy world. Her hard work influenced me to create no excuses to work, and her independence as a single mom has influenced me to make my own decisions and be unapologetically myself.
What keeps you excited about life in general?
Life. That's it! The fact that I wake up every day is a blessing. And that excites me a lot. Everything else we get to be excited about can only be possible if we are alive first!
What is your advice for people to be happier, healthier and more full of love?
I believe happiness starts in one's mindset. Having clean and positive thoughts can significantly influence our happiness. If someone is happy in their mind, it'll reflect on the outside, and they'll share positive energy with others. Love! For health, I keep healthy by practicing healthy eating habits. I also ensure to have enough sleep to have the energy to exercise. Overall, happiness, good health, and love start in one's mind.
What is the most courageous thing you have ever done?
Going back to college when most of my friends had already graduated. I must say this was the most courageous thing I've ever done! Many people discouraged me and said I'd be the oldest in my class, and the world would have passed by. I'm grateful I didn't listen to them, and I'm soon going to graduate with Honors from Middlesex University Dubai.
Is there an person you are fascinated about or you would like to work with in the future?
This is a tricky question. I'd love to work with so many talented people and organizations. I'd want to work with more designers promoting sustainable fashion and young talents in the fashion industry. For organizations, I'd like to work with fellow feminist organizations worldwide.
What kind of life would you like to have?
Honestly, I'm grateful for the kind of life I have now. If it can be better in any way, I'm sure it'll be as God wants it. My role is to enjoy every bit of it and live to help others. By the way, this question calls for pressure. But I'm grateful that I don't compare myself to others whatsoever, especially those on social media. Comparisons may want you to wish for a life that probably never exists. So why not just enjoy the one you already have?
If you could change something on the planet, what would it be?
Empathy. I wish we could understand and share each other's feelings; this planet would be better.
What are your goals for the near future and do you have any exciting projects you want to share with us?
I'm working on a couple of exciting projects, and I wish I could share all of them with you right now. The recent one that I've already shared with the world is the launch of my foundation: the Oliver Nakakande Foundation, which focuses on giving a second chance to teenage mothers to go back to school. And I might get back into pageantry soon!
Photographer/Retoucher: Banji @banji4to
Model: Oliver Nakakande @olivernakakande
Fashion Designer: Mshona Uganda @mshonaug
Fashion Designer: Yusmah fashion @yusmah_fashion
Fashion Designer: Bantu by Claire Asiimwe @sewbantu
Fashion Designer: Aliad Zoe @aliad_zoe
Makeup Artist/Hair Stylist: @Vanni.beau
Accessory Designer: @Greenamba