Change starts with us all
While Taqaddam helps develop real skills to help young people navigate their way in the world, one of its most important lessons is that we all have potential to make change happen – if we are equipped with the right skills.
Sameh, an HSBC volunteer on the recent Taqaddam programme in Oman, was asked which song most closely represented the programme. He chose Michael Jackson’s Man in the Mirror, because ‘If I want to make a change in the world, in society it starts with me, I need to make a change to myself to participate and develop in society. I start with the man in the mirror.’
Time to give back
Sameh, an experienced communications professional at HSBC, shared his knowledge with students during the workshops. He believes it is important that organisations such as HSBC give back to society through supporting educational programmes such as Taqaddam through partnerships with organisations like the Goodall Foundation and the British Council. He hopes the students will make good use of the skills and knowledge they have learned during the programme in their personal lives, as well as their careers.
A wealth of knowledge
This wealth of knowledge includes the value of teamwork, prioritisation and self-awareness. Alissa, a teacher at Caledonian College, observed many students who became very reflective, thinking about themselves and identifying their weaknesses and their strengths. This helped them grow in confidence and by the end of the programme they felt able to participate in activities and open up to other students. Sameh agreed, and observed that there was a marked change in the students in the first and second workshops, as students returned energised and enthusiastic to share their progress and improve their skills.
We can all learn
But it’s not just the students who can learn from Taqaddam. Sameh has learned many things which he will use in his career, and also learned from the students themselves. For Alissa, the most valuable lesson is the new techniques to motivate and encourage students to participate. One of her courses is a part-time course for older learners. They attend lessons after a day at work and often turn up exhausted and demotivated. By using some of the techniques she had picked up at Taqaddam, Alissa was able to energise her class and found that the environment changed very quickly once the students were engaged.
Making it happen
For Alissa, it was the projects where the students themselves took ownership which really built confidence and helped them make the most of the skills they had learned. This will help students to make the changes they want in society, and in the world.