My time volunteering
I worked at the Career Centre at VETA, called Kazi (meaning ‘work’ in Swahili) Connect. We were a part of the EEVT (Enhancing Employability through Vocational Training) project . Our aim at Kazi Connect was to promote employability amongst the youth by matching students to internships; graduates with job opportunities; as well as training the students in their interview skills and CV writing. We improved student’s employability skills and provided career guidance.
The training days were always exciting, it was a delight to meet the students and to hear about their lives and aspirations. The trainings did not always start on time and it was unknown how many people will attend but this added to the excitement. At the end of the day, the attendees were always happy and have learnt lots about employability skills.
Another vital aspect of the project was the sustainability. How could we make sure that students actually benefit from the training days, for example, how could we measure our impact. How did we ensure that new volunteers after us build on where we finish; but most importantly building the capacity of our local counterparts to continue the work after the project ends. We wrote reports each month on how many students we trained in employability skills including interview skills, CV-writing, soft skills awareness and career guidance; how many job matches we have made; how many students/graduates receive advice on entrepreneurship and how many companies we have connected with graduates.
The impact of my placement
We trained over thousands students and over thousands graduates in employability skills, empowerment, soft skills etc. We bridged the gap between the school, the primary actors and the industries, creating a lot of collaboration and partnership between them, which is on-going even after the project. My role was to train graduates/students, advice in office, collaborate with colleagues and teachers and industries. I think I also inspired my local colleagues, as well as they inspired my, of different ways of working.
Other aspects of the project was to improve the vocational training and so we also had volunteer technical advisors, such as carpentry, English language and IT advisors. Therefore, together we helped to enhance employability through building the capacity of VETA to deliver market driven vocational training; a truly rewarding project for all.
My unforgettable moments
It is impossible to choose one. There are so many unforgettable moments and memories. In general I take with me the spontaneity and flexibility, things never goes as planned but in the end worked out very well. I will forever remember the warmth of the people, the endless greetings and the generosity. To spend so many months with people from all over the world, from different religious, with different views and opinions and in different ages is so enriching and developing.
To read more you can also check out my blog:
The impact my placement has had on me
I just returned back home, so difficult to say how my experience will impact my life in the long run, but for now I feel every overwhelmed, in a positive way, by my time in Tanzania. The way people there appreciate the small things, the way they are thankful and give feedback, I will always remember. How they care about each other and strangers in a way we don't do in Europe, (or at least I can speak for Sweden). The social aspects of life, the way the greet each other and they way of working together. With more focus on the team work and the collective benefit of the work, rather than the individual achievements and performances. The working pace and in general the pace of doing things or talking, much 'slower' than in Sweden, seams at first sight very frustrating for a western person, but appears after some time much more healthy and sane.