Last school year took an abrupt turn when schools across Canada moved online due to COVID-19 following March Break, and remained that way throughout the summer.
Fonthill resident Mohammad Baig decided to try something new during his time spent at home. The eight-year-old St. Alexander student created a YouTube channel and has acquired some 260 subscribers since May.
“I was sitting at home during the pandemic, bored and not knowing what to do or anything, so I decided to make this YouTube channel with my parent’s permission,” said Baig.
Baig wanted his channel to entertain other children and encourage them to try new things and work on projects to keep them busy during this difficult time.
The channel is called Star Aviation and Vlogs and focuses on different aircraft and plane-spotting, which is observing planes taking off and landing from airports. He also highlights tragic events like 9/11, other large crashes, occasional bird videos, and vlogs about his trips to Dufferin Island.
Sharmeen Bhojani, Baig’s mother, wasn’t completely on board with the idea at first but soon changed her mind. Bhojani shared that once her son started making the videos and she saw the science, technology and editing skills he was using, she just wanted to keep motivating him to continue.
The entire family has since gotten involved with the project.
“So I still want to be part of it, and now it seems like the videos that he makes, the channel that he has, it seems like it’s a family channel now because everybody takes so much interest, his father, me, his brother,” said Bhojani.
Baig’s videos show his fascination for things that fly and have led him to want to become an aeronautical engineer.
His mother wants to encourage him to continue to share his passion with others through his YouTube channel. She hopes that her son will be an inspiration to kids in the community.
“I think he’s doing good so far and I want people to encourage him more by subscribing and stuff like that,” said Bhojani.
She also said that Baig’s cousins, who saw him make some of his videos, started making their own channels as well.
“So really, they kind of took after him and thought, ‘Oh, so if he can do it, we can do it, too,’” she said.
Baig is happy about the number of subscribers he has obtained and is eager for more people to watch his channel. He added that the support he has received from viewers has given him the strength to make more.
The young YouTuber had been through numerous hurdles in his past but refused to let them hold him down.
Bhojani shared that Baig was born prematurely at 32 weeks and was put on the broad spectrum of autism. She added that he had difficulty communicating and socializing when he was younger but overcame those challenges through hard work and dedication.
“I have seen a big change since he was six years old. He started to put things together and things started to get better. I’m really proud of him, he came this far and after making this YouTube channel too. He sure is a fighter.”