Overcoming Social Challenges with Confidence
Updated: Jun 26, 2018
Training Site: Jabana
Sector and District: Jabana, Gasabo
Implementing Partner: Never Again Rwanda
With just a few minutes left for the day’s lessons, trainers Albert Ndayishimiye, 27, and Francoise Uwamariya, 28, wrap up their Work Ready Now instruction and wish the students a good day. As the students head out from the Jabana training site, they smile and thank the trainers for their support. The trainers smile back.
Albert, a practicing electricity and computer technician, became a trainer in 2012. Even though training is not directly part of his field of work, he has grown a deep respect for the value of teaching work readiness skills, both for the youth and for himself. He shared an example of the youth he trained in his first year, and how they are now successful entrepreneurs because of the knowledge they gained. “Being a trainer, it’s one of those things I hope to do from now until the end of time.”
Francoise, who previously worked as a television presenter, also joined in the same year, and has been profoundly impacted by her power as a trainer to empower the youth. Some of the vulnerable youth that join Huguka Dukore Akazi Kanoze training were previously not able to make decisions for themselves, so she works to train them to become strong and self-reliant.
“Being a trainer, it’s one of those things I hope to do from now until the end of time.” - Albert Ndayishimiye
In their experience, the power and impact of training youth is multiplied when teaching the HDAK curriculum. “Before we train them with HDAK, they don’t know how to express themselves in front of others, or how to be self-confident in social situations. Especially for the youth who come from the countryside, they struggled with self-confidence. But day by day, through Work Ready Now and Be Your Own Boss modules, they become more confident. HDAK really changes their minds,” Albert said.
“It’s about real life: how to become an entrepreneur, how to be safe and confident,” he added.
Francoise emphasizes the value of the goal-setting module as part of the training. Many of the youth that enter HDAK training have hopes and dreams for their futures, but they don’t know how go about achieving them. Through learning goal-setting, these youth can plan how to achieve both their professional and personal dreams.
She also noted the importance, yet difficulty, of teaching the module regarding safety and security at work. The included lessons about sexual and reproductive health, and general health in the workplace, are often new to youth that did not undergo these lessons in school, making them harder to teach, but even more important to learn.
Albert also noted a similar difficulty in their work based on a lack of previous understanding. Specifically, HDAK’s focus on social inclusion is often challenging to implement in areas lacking support services. “Sometimes we go into areas and find that they may not have the infrastructure to support people with disabilities, or there this not a culture of gender balance,” Albert explained.
Despite these challenges, Albert and Francoise continue to find ways to overcome them through better planning, because they’ve personally realized the power of HDAK to change lives. “HDAK has taught me to express myself, to know who I am, and what I’m going to do in the future. When we train the youth, we have to provide examples, so I strive to become that example for them,” Albert said.
“I’ve also learned the importance of having a network or a family. The trainers, the administrators, we work together as a team, and it means a lot to me. I’ve learned many things through these people,” he continued.
“HDAK has taught me to express myself, to know who I am, and what I’m going to do in the future. When we train the youth, we have to provide examples, so I strive to become that example for them." - Albert Ndayishimiye
Meanwhile, in teaching the youth to become entrepreneurs, Francoise herself has been inspired to become one, and to have something to work for. While she currently faces a lack of access to capital, she hopes that one day she can start and grow her own business.
Albert chimes in. “I have a long way to go, but I hope to become an entrepreneur and have my own company as well. I look forward to that vision.”