Augusto Valverde is the creative force behind Global Child TV, the new generation world travel show that blends luxury, adventure and life lessons. He is also the founder of the BIG Foundation, a non-profit organization that brings together Christians, Jews and Muslims to help people in need, regardless of their faith or beliefs.
Augusto Valverde grew in Mexico City and moved to Canada at the age of 19. He returned to Miami where he launched SWAY Magazine and worked as it's Chief Editor. Augusto became a top event promoter and was selected as the #1 event promoter in the United States by Telemundo, He hosted a prime-time national daily show called La tijera in Telefutura. After moving to the West Coast in 2009, he earned a UCLA certificate for Feature Film writing and honed his acting skills. Augusto uses his life experience, travel adventures and degree in theology to connect and communicate with his audience. You'll hear more about his journey during our Zoom interview.
You can check out Global Child TV and buy Augusto's new book below.
Global Child on Prime Video: https://www.amazon.com/gp/video/detail/B08HVZV3FL/ref=atv_dp_share_cu_r
You can buy Augusto's book on Amazon - Global Child: Wisdom from Travel Adventures to Unlock Your Potential
Welcome to Stories of Change and Creativity. I'm Judy Oskam, I'm a university professor and Gallup strengths coach. On this podcast, we explore ideas about the journey we take and the choices we make. I'm excited to share my conversation with Augusto Valverde, he's creator, producer, director, and host of the world travel show, Global Child Travel with Purpose. Global Child TV travels, the world, sharing life lessons through the lens of luxury and adventure, Augusto partners with influencers around the globe to give back to charities. And those in need. His book, Global Child: Wisdom from Travel Adventures to Unlock Your Potential, is a blend of travel, passion and purpose. I hope you enjoy our conversation.Augusto Valverde:
We are a world travel show called global child because we believe that no matter your race, your religion, your background, your culture, you're part of the family of humanity. So you are a global child. And as we travel the world through the best experiences we always give back and we travel with purpose, which is our slogan. And we are now seen on Amazon Prime, a bunch of major airlines, like Emirates. We've been on American Airlines, Iberia,, et cetera, and now more and more distribution is growing. And so as our capacity to give backJudy Oskam:
Well, Augusto, I I've really enjoyed watching you and the brand grow over the last few years. Take us back to how you got, how you started in this because you started, uh, you had very humble beginnings. Talk about that for us. Yes.Augusto Valverde:
Well, I believe that one of the reasons why things happen to us in life is that we can share those lessons with other people. And in a nutshell, I was the number one party promoter in Miami. I got selected to host a reality TV show, but you know, that kind of materialistic, uh, party life was, uh, a little bit shallow. And eventually I just kind of felt in my spirit that I was meant for more. And so, you know, obviously I know that a lot of people who are listening to us now, uh, don't have my faith have a different kind of faith or are in exploration. Let's just say, but I always like to share my story from my worldview. And so, you know, I kind of always believed that, uh, there was, uh, a higher power. So I basically pray to God to show me what I was supposed to do. And within a couple of months I had a national prime time TV show where I was debating on Spanish TV just about people's lives. And that kind of fast track me into the entertainment world. I found out very quickly that the things that we sometimes desire most aren't really what are going to satisfy us. And so eventually this channel, let me go. I moved to LA, I did the struggling actor thing for a long time. Um, and then somebody invited me to a cool modern Christian Church. I started doing volunteering in prisons, and then I won a contest for NBC Universal to be a TV host. So, uh, it was quite a story, quite a ride. And once I had that contract, I learned that a lot of what you see in television and then a lot of industries is kind of redundant. I'm sure you see this sometimes all the time, Judy, where, uh, there's just a lot of people who are doing the same job over and over, or, you know, like clunky bureaucracy. You want to say it. Um, and so, right. And so I just, I just realized that a lot of TV production and production in general is problem solving. So I set out with a selfie stick, uh, basically very little money and a lot of friends. And I started recording what would look like a video blog, but a lot of times, and I save this to the people who will want to go into media, who are listening to me right now. A lot of times the difference between a video blog and a proper television program is just the way you edit it at the end. Right? And so instead of making a 10 minute video that didn't really have a format, I created a half hour show that had commercial breaks, had a concept. We taught positive life lessons. We use social media and I really based it on experiences. And, uh, and then, yeah, you know, I basically, every channel said, no, initially my manager dropped me. My agency dropped me. My girlfriend broke up with me. Everybody started calling me like a loser, get a job. And I'm summarizing two years of hardcore struggle. It was along that time that I met you and Judy actually, right?Judy Oskam:
So I remember Miami 2017. I remember that.Augusto Valverde:
Why don't you tell them where we work?Judy Oskam:
We were at NATPE, National Association o f Television Program Executives. And we were o n at a beach on the beach and there was a party and Augusto walks up. And I remember what you were wearing. You had a, just dashing looking hat on and walked up to me. We sort of ran into each other. And I think you thought I was a producer, right? And here I am a professor coming to learn and keep up to date with the media industry. And, but since we met, I've, I've had you come talk to my classes online at Texas state university. And, and I've just really enjoyed following your whole career because I think what sparked me is your personality. And part of the challenges, you know, this podcast is about change and creativity, and the fact that you have embraced change and you've keep moving forward. Those are su ch l ife lessons that I always want students in my own children to really learn. And I think you have so many lessons, so you, you pick it up from there.Augusto Valverde:
That's great. Thank you. Um, you know, when I saw you, you looked like someone of importance. I didn't know what it was or what it is, but you know, Michael Jordan says that you miss a hundred percent of the shots you don't take and in life, you know, it's, sometimes it's just having the courage to have a simple conversation. You know, if you're respectful, I found that most people are happy to meet other humans. It doesn't always have to have an angle, but a much let's say if like, if you're a single guy or a single girl, have you never speak to anyone? It's like, how's that going to happen? Like, so in business, sometimes it's the same, the same way. So long story short at that juncture, I went, I had been to MIPCOM, which happens in Cannes and I basically without really knowing the industry, I made these little trailers and I sent 3000 emails to everyone attending that TV trade show. And I had a bunch of meetings and I couldn't really make a sale because I didn't know what in the world that was doing, but for not B, which happened two or three months later, I was able to analyze how to make my pitch better. And a long story short, it was during that series of meetings that I met at distribution company that was from Spain. And I told them, I said, listen, guys, you guys are Spanish. I fly on Iberia all the time and I don't know how good my travel show is, but it's better than what they have on there because I've seen it. And it's better than that. So if you show them our show, they're going to buy it. And if they buy it, I'll give you your percentages. And that's exactly what they did. They presented it to them. But not only did they buy it for Iberia, they bought it for, uh, British Airways, Delta, Cathay Airlines, Thai Airways, Scandinavian, Royal Jordanian, uh, Air Europa, and a bunch of other ones. So we became the first travel show to launch on more than 10 major airlines that carry more than 500 million passengers. And that's kind of how global Child really came into existence.Judy Oskam:
Well, and I think I love the way you are, um, producing the show because you're not just doing it on your own. You're connecting with the influencers in the other countries. Talk about that. That's a brilliant strategy right there.Augusto Valverde:
Sure. I, I think, um, when I looked at the platform or lack of it at the beginning, I realized that a lot of times we think in monetary terms, you know, I need this amount of money to reach this amount of audience and I didn't have the money. So sometimes, you know, necessity is the mother of invention. And what I realized is that there's a lot of influencers, but for all their influence, it seemed to me that most of them didn't know what to use their influences for, because all I saw was, you know, the pretty couple, just having a good time and not doing much with that. And I decided to invite some of these influencers on the journey, always find a way to give back with them and just share the experience because I think, uh, everything is, um, what is it like shared experiences, multiply the joy and divide the sorrows. So I, uh, I bring, I brought them along and then they ended up, uh, helping us to promote the show and all these things. And I found this formula where I realized, I mean, at the end of the day, television is a visual medium as, as you all know. And, uh, there's a lot of, you know, shots. Uh, we say in the industry that if a beautiful girl is doing it, or maybe somebody from a different gender, it looks nice. But if I do it, it looks weird. So, you know, I will stop riding a horse at sunset in slow motion. It's kind of weird.Judy Oskam:
By yourself,Augusto Valverde:
The little too narcissistic it just doesn't work. Y ou k now, n ow, you know, I was diving with the sharks, that's fun or jumping on a helicopter, we do those things, b ut you've done all of that. Y es, we've done all that stuff. We're milking a sheep, b ut, u h, but I realized very quickly that having a female c ohost really gave us that diversity visually where, you know, if we have people who are both men and women watching, you know, they both have different genders and we really represent, u h, there's a whole spectrum of kind of humanity. And so these c o-hosts h ave changed. They each bring their own personality, t heir p assion projects. And I l ikened it to a, like an ingredient. Now you're cooking a dish. Every country is completely different. And t hey're the secret ingredient that make each piece like its own R Vs.Judy Oskam:
I, I just love that. I just think that's a smart, smart strategy. And I love how you're connecting this with giving back. Talk about that. Talk about the Big Foundation.Augusto Valverde:
Sure, So when we first began to do the show, I started traveling and, you know, I remember one time we went to Tanzania specifically and they took us to see a Maasai village and an orphanage that they were sponsoring. And when I look back at that footage and I pieced it together, I realized that that specific episode had a little more meaning to me than some of the other ones where I had not done charity. And I began to realize just kind of doing some introspection about my, my own Christian values and you know, what we're here to do, that it was within the realm of my possibility to not only teach a positive life lesson, which every show does, but to actually find ways to give back. Sometimes it's very easy and it's just, uh, it's a straightforward and other times I find them particularly wealthy nations and they make it a little more difficult because they don't want to showcase any of their deficiencies as, as, as countries. So, you know, that's a couple of the reasons why, if you see, you know, all 25 episodes that we have, uh, I'll say that season two, really, we did begin to truly give back. For example, in India, I was trying to balance the, um, the lack that there is in India with the beautiful extravagance of being sponsored by two of the top hotel brands on planet earth, which is Oberoi and Taj hotels. So we must have gotten, you know, like a couple hundred thousand dollars worth of trade just in hotel rooms. Then you would walk into these beautiful Mahata palaces and they would literally shower you with Rose petals from the roof. And it was visually it's awesome. Obviously it was a lot of fun to film that. And yet I knew that when the whole piece was put together, if I ignored the poverty and all the issues, then I would simply be feeding this narrative and I would have become part of the problem. And if I made it all about the problem, then I would be, you know, a kind of depressing documentary, which is necessary, but that's not our audience. Now there's a space for that, but that was not us. So I decided to do a little mix and I found the story of Siddhartha, who was this Indian Prince who lived in a lot of luxury. And then he left the palace walls and he was trying to find enlightenment. And he went to, to live with a quote unquote with like the poor people or through lack. So we kind of modeled it after that. I, I mentioned that in the episode and then we'd go to the South of India. And there, one of the things that we did is I discovered there's a lot of leper colonies and leprosy for actually most disease, you know, for, for the Hindus, they believe in a cycle of birth and rebirth. So they believe that if you are born sake or poor it's because you must've done something really bad in your past life. So you kind of deserve to be like that. So, uh, obviously this leads to all kinds of, uh, generational poverty and, and ostracized myth. So, but we basically sponsored a whole leper colony with food. Um, it was a place that, uh, hosted, you know, 60 of these people and we sponsor them with food for an entire year. So these 60 individuals now had food for a whole year. So when I left there, you know, I thought to myself, I said, look, I mean, I don't know how big a dent that does towards humanity's problems, but we were able to improve the lives of 60 people. And, um, that to this day, again, we're speaking about this now. So that's kind of what I think our lives should be about. You can't always do it 24 seven, but it's important to be mindful of it.Judy Oskam:
Well, I, I, I love how you're helping to tell that story and also showing us the visuals that are so luxurious, as you've mentioned, that blend is really a challenging thing to do in media when your audience is in some cases, a captive audience too, when they're in the airplane or wherever they're watching. Right. So I think that's interesting now did that, then all of those stories lead to the book. Can you talk about the book a little bit?Augusto Valverde:
Sure. So, you know, as we began to travel the world, we started doing things from, uh, for example, then in Fiji, again, I try to strike that balance. And I went diving with 35 bull sharks, no cage, it's my greatest fear. And, you know, somebody asked me, how do you know your show is going to work? And I said, because I am willing to risk my life, literally. And if I left, it will work. Yeah. As I listen, like no other TV host is that doing this that I know, but, uh, my joy either, because I'm brave, I just did it because I was desperate. So, uh, but yeah, it was, it was great. And then in, in Fiji, we ended up sponsoring a, uh, a hospital that treats victims victims who have been burnt and abused women. And it's just really nice. So all these stories around the world began to compile a series of lessons that have molded, who I am currently and who I am to be. And so I've always been a writer, quote, unquote, not to call myself a writer, but that was my strength. As a, as a child, as a teenager, I used to get horrible grades as a professor, you would be shocked, but I would see the creativity. I would see the creativity. I will give you points for that. I was very creative. I would literally myself kicked out of class. So I could go to the library and read the books I wanted to read fiction and all these things. And I would write a bunch of poetry. So yeah, I made a promise, uh, many, many years ago, uh, to God that if he, you know, allowed me to, uh, to, to attend the Florida international university where I attended for, for, for certain, while that I would write this book geared towards showing the world how cool, um, living a life of faith was and what that would look like. And so I compiled all these, uh, lessons. I share the story of how, you know, my family's been through a lot of, uh, a lot of trials. It's a long story and it's a tangent. That's why we have the book. Right. But, uh, but they stole$50 million from my mother. So from day to night or night to day, um, it seemed that my future was secure and now there was no financial blanket. And I had to go out there with my selfie stick. And, uh, I had troubled, you know, having some$70 for food in a week and I would just eat a lot of, you know, eggs and beans. And, and those were, I look back on those at those times. And I know that sometimes people see this right. And they'll think, well, I don't have the money. I don't have this. Well, I really didn't either. And so that's kind of what we cover from the book. And, you know, every episode is a, was a life lesson. So we compiled it on into this book, which I'm showing you now for the audience, that's hearing it. They can't see it. But, uh, it basically, it's called global child wisdom from travel adventures to unlock your potential. And I, I love this cover because if you see a Judy, it has a, I'm basically, uh, I'm in Dubai, I'm looking at a ancient street and there's just one path of light, which is very straightforward. And it's symbolic. My back is turned so you don't see my face. And I'm, I was literally praying at that moment. And I didn't know that they took the photo and this beautiful eye of, I called the eye of protection, just appeared and halo.Judy Oskam:
It's, it's like a rainbow over his head and sort of like a, you know, a halo.Augusto Valverde:
Yeah. And it's, uh, and I love it cause I had no idea this was happening. And I happened to be bringing because I was feeling overwhelmed. So as they were setting up the cameras, I was just taking a breath. I closed my eyes and I was asking God to help me to please help us to do a good job and little did. I know that my camera guy just took out his iPhone and snap. And uh, so yeah, so now we have this book on, uh, Amazon prime for sale type a global child. And, uh, it should, uh, come out there and the series as well. If you go to Amazon prime video, you can see it's, uh, just again, global child, we have season one. So if you see season one, you'll see me running around with a selfie stick. If you see season two, then you'll be able to tell how our budgets increased drastically, but they have a, they both have the same soul. Let's sayJudy Oskam:
Exactly the same soul. And I think that's interesting. And I, I'm glad you mentioned that one of your strengths is writing. I like people to really understand their strengths and if they can lean into their strengths, what are some other strengths of yours? Would you consider?Augusto Valverde:
Well, I think that, um, early on in the show, I think most people who create shows or concepts, they're very worried that somebody is going to steal their idea. And I do remember hearing someone say that that's something that really amateurs worry about because most of the things, if you really want to steal them, let's say, you know, they'll, they'll adapt them. They'll do a mild changes and then maybe you don't take it, but nobody can take who you are. Nobody can copy who you are, your persona, your soul, your life experiences, your voice. And I realized that the more truthful I was and the more transparent I was to who I was, whatever it is that I am, you know, it was like quirky and funny, but whatever it is that you are, nobody can take my personality. They might take the name of the show, worst case scenario or whatever it is, but it's really you. So I really would encourage everyone to, to, to write, um, because writing at the end of the day is a, you know, it's, it's literally a creation through a series of words, but whether you speak the words, whether you sing the words, whether you write the words, whether you create images that, um, portray the words that you're trying to say at the end of the day it's communication.Judy Oskam:
Right. Right, right. And so, you know, communication is obviously one of your strengths. What, what advice would, what other advice would you have for, for our listeners? And we have listeners all over the globe as well about finding and traveling their path and traveling their path with purpose.Augusto Valverde:
Yes. Well, I think the, you know, you buy an item, uh, when you want to discover what its true purpose is and all of its capabilities, you have to ask it's maker. Sometimes, you know, you gotta like laptop. I didn't know it could do this. I didn't know it could do that. And the one who knows everything that you can do is the one who made you now, again, not imposing a worldview on anyone. But I will say I've had a lot of friends who are, you know, uh, atheists, different belief systems. And I've always told them, I said, listen, if God is real, he will have no problem showing himself to you. What happens is that, Oh, I have a degree in theology by the way. So, uh, I had dropped out of college. That's also in the book. And then I went back and uh, I ended up getting a degree in theology. So studying all these different world's religions, I really do know that God gives you free will. So he's, he's a gentleman. So if you never really want to meet him, he'll send you the stars and the rainbows and babies and all the beautiful things you enjoy. And, and, but, but if you ever have that curiosity, I would just invite anyone who's hearing me right now. Um, it's not about a religion. It's about a personal relationship with your maker. And if you really have it, you're going to be more loving, more patient, especially towards those people who don't believe like you. And unfortunately we live in a time and age where somehow people want to tie politics into faith. But the last time I checked, Jesus was a King. So he actually has no political party. So my allegiances are to him. And what he said to me, he said, uh, love God and love your neighbor. This sums up the entire thing. So if you ever see someone calling themselves a Christian who was being unloving, just know that those people are definitely not walking with Christ or not doing a good job of doing it no? So I would just recommend to everyone, listen, go out for a walk, uh, ask, ask God to show himself to you. And while he's at it, why don't you ask him to show you what your purpose is? Because he really does have it. And that's how I discovered mine. I never ever thought about creating a, a travel series. I never thought about doing all these things that we're doing. All I did was back in the day, tell God that I felt I was created for more than just partying and an empty lifestyle. And if you could please just show me what I was born to do. He didn't reveal the entire plan to me. He just gave me the next step and the next step. And as I continued to make this my prayer and listen to life the way, you know, God doesn't need to shout out at you. I think he has many ways of communicating sometimes through podcasts, this one, right? And sometimes some circumstances in our life that, uh, that we'll know when, when he's trying to get us to go somewhere or not, and wherever he's guiding us, it's always going to be the best place. So I always want to just, um, recommend to everyone to anything that's worthwhile is going to require risk. There's always going to be critics. There's going to be opposition. There's going to be push back because nowhere that's really worth it. Um, we do. We never arrived there without a struggle. It's just the way the world is wired.Judy Oskam:
Well, and I think that's some great advice and being open for the change and being creative along the path. I think that's great. I'll go. So thank you so much for joining us today. I appreciate your message. I love your purpose. And again, people check out the book, check out the show, right?Augusto Valverde:
Yes, of course. And for all of those, want to follow us on social media? Our Instagram handle is Global Child TV. And then obviously our website is global child tv.com. You can see, you can find the book on Amazon. You can see the series on Amazon, and there's a lot of exciting things coming up. I wanted to share some news with you Judy, before, uh, before we end this call, we're now developing the global channel network. So we're going to become our own network, our own OTT, which means that, you know, like cool little Netflix, Amazon, better that a digital. And we're going to begin to aggregate content, travel content, uh, you know, just uplifting the people that are doing good. And we are, I'm believing that what we're going to do is we're going to donate 50% of all the subscription fees, uh, straight to certain charities. We choose to make uplifting shelves. And so now people are going to be able to really become global children and, and make a, uh, an exponential impact on the morning.Judy Oskam:
The difference Augusto. Thank you so much. Appreciate it. Thanks for your time. Thank you so much. Thank you for listening to stories of change and creativity. Check out the show notes for more information on this episode, and you can find information about Augusto's book. You can find this podcast on any of your favorite streaming platforms. If you have a story to tell or know someone who does reach out to me at www.judyoskam.com. And thanks for listening.