Kherson Women Union continues to promote and implement ideas of coaching in Kherson and Kherson Oblast by introducing pilot projects, having adapted them to the most recent reforms of boarding institutions. At the end of August Kherson Women Union announced the start of work on a new program, having chosen the corporate coaching as a focus, which is a common practice in the developed European countries.
What is the corporate coaching and whether it is real to find enterprises and companies in Kherson that are ready to give the opportunity to orphaned children, that are deprived of parental care, or from families with deprived backgrounds, to receive a new important experience and useful skills of self-presentation, to serve an apprenticeship, and, finally, find a worthy entry-level position?
Our conversation with Iryna Nikolayeva, Head of Kherson Women Union is about it.
- Dear Iryna, Kherson Women Union started the implementation of a pilot project of the unique in our region Program of Social Coaching “Step by step” a year ago. Today the project is being transformed into a program of the corporate coaching. What are the similarities and differences of the given programs?
The definition of coaching for the orphaned children and children deprived of parental care was fixed at the legislative level in July 2017; the main aim, defined, was the preparation of a child that resides at the orphanage or the boarding institution for the independent life.
In the meantime, being encouraged by the idea of support and coaching of Maryna Kalyna’s orphaned teenagers, having united professionals and like-minded people, we created a team of psychologists that were directing their efforts on the socializing of boarders of 2 Oblast boarding institutions and becoming responsible and successful personalities for almost a year. More than 100 children, from 6 up to 17 years old, took part in the program “Step by step”.
Video about the project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yyiXcMlC-WE
Program of the corporate coaching is the project with such an important aim – getting ready for the independent life, but with a more attainable practical result – the employment of its participants. Accordingly, the candidates’ age category to participate in the program is different – these are the teenagers and youth (14 -19 year olds). And the most important difference is that the coach will be not a separate psychologist but the whole enterprise or company, that is interested in the support of talented children and training of the “own” qualified employees. Of course, the training component will also be present and professional psychologists will also be involved in it.
- Why personally you are interested in this theme?
Memories are getting back to the childhood… Do you remember like our parents told us about their profession, shared their impressions, excitement, told – whether with gusto or with irritation – what the day was like en famille in the evenings? And there you, when choosing higher educational or vocational institution, could orientate, WHAT KIND of profession you were going to have. And children that leave the walls of the boarding system, as a rule have only few ways of vocational education: a Sewer, a Carpenter, a Plasterer or a Baker. Why? As these educational institutions are waiting and looking for these children after final examinations – they need to gather groups of students and there are state-financed openings.
And boarders of the orphanages don’t have a profound understanding of professions, and don’t cover all perspectives, they don’t know where they can get employed after that and that there are institutions where they can be employed without special professional skills. And it is not the children’s fault, as this, so to seem, elementary knowledge should be given by the adults.
Mainly for this reason, I am interested in this project personally. It is interesting with its discoveries and possibilities, interesting with its resources and new achievements!
- What does the corporate coaching mean?
Corporate coaching is when business, public organizations and just public representatives are ready to help and support one child or many children with occupational choice, acquisition of skills, understanding of own talents, skills, desires for the sake of meaningful future. To help with serving an apprenticeship, professional practice, to present other jobs and to show what kind of career development there can be, and the fact that success is possible in general, disregarding the way that the society treats you (and societal prejudice can often be an obstacle for the employment of young people, graduates of boarding schools). And all this is a small part of the corporate coaching!
Coaching in general means chances, personal involvement and healthy future not only for children, but for our society at large.
- Have you already chosen the participants of a new project?
There are candidates for one age group. Kherson Women Union has got 12 new friends… I don’t even know how to call them – they are not children, as they are 17 year olds, but they are still not adults.
12 young people in particular, who used to live in the walls of the boarding system, have agreed to take part in our program of the corporate coaching. These boys and girls have a great desire to learn the world, new professions, try the new looks and follow the call of the heart. But as they confess, not all of them understand: what mainly do their hearts want?
The reason is that they are studying in the specialized institutions (Vocational Technical Schools), but only there, where there were state-funded openings for children with a status: hard life circumstances or orphan. Aliona likes to draw and would like to deepen her knowledge, and Vitalik has been studying to become a locksmith, but would like to perform trainings and become a psychologist; Nastya has been studying to become a painter, but still she doesn’t really know what she really wants, as she doesn’t know what professions are like inside…
I think there are lots of discoveries ahead of us! (Smiling - auth.)
- Kherson Women Union is known with its open and friendly partnership and active involvement of ordinary folks into the fulfillment of socially significant projects. Tell us, please, who and how can help with the fulfillment of the new project of the corporate coaching?
- We are also known with the fact that we don’t act within the bounds and that there are no strings attached, when it comes to such significant social initiatives. The main message that we deliver with this program: Would you like to change the life of an orphaned teenager or child that faces hard life circumstances for the better? Help him/her to obtain a profession! Share your experience! Teach your know-how: how to write CV, how to prepare for the first interview, how to believe in own abilities, when it seems that you are alone in the whole world!
If you share our point of view, you are welcome to become our partner! We would be glad to cooperate with entrepreneurs, socially responsible business, and will be thankful for any help – with transport means, logistics, providing of conference-halls for studies. We would like to invite professional vocational coaches, specialists on financial awareness, beauty – you can make your dream to help children come true by sharing your professional knowledge and skills with teenagers. Who has a wish and desire to help financially – we will be happy to become partners.
We organize and support the corporate coaching in Kherson and Kherson Oblast. I will give you the information on all the stages, achievements and situations that we are going to pass with “our” children and youth from now on. And if your heart embraces this program, please, feel free to call me or send us an e-mail: +38050-787-20-35, firstname.lastname@example.org
With our each big and small project, event or program we carry our mission with dignity – unite communities and create circumstances for the development of children’s and youth’s leadership potential in Kherson and Kherson Oblast – generation that will be able to create happy Ukraine. Join us!
Interviewed by: Iulia Mainer
Photo:Natalia Nozhevnyk , Natalia Timanova, Alena Martynenko, Mariya Skіbіtska