Medical student and chicken shop enthusiast, Akashi Alam explores the hidden narratives behind the humble fried chicken outlets scattered across London. Explaining why these fast food outlets provide an essential service for young people and why we need to create more spaces where young people feel a sense of belonging and agency. Akashi spent a lot of her teenage years with friends at her local chicken shops which act as social hubs for the city’s most disadvantaged. She believes they are delivering where essential public services have failed – but her medical studies have brought to light the reality of the health epidemic her generation will face as a consequence. Born and raised in Tower Hamlets, she is now training to be a doctor. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

Akashi Alam

OPENx winner, medical student

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