Mentoring or coaching, which WONDER calls ‘accompaniment’, is one of the five pillars through which we work to empower women with education. To this end we are delighted to have formally agreed our partnership with EMCC UK.
We are excited that this relationship will help us together to improve and share best practice in community mentoring and training of volunteer mentors. This will increase the scope of our work in Europe, where we have partners in Slovenia, Spain and Latvia with whom, through the Easier Transitions project, we have developed mentoring practice for young people not in education, employment or training (NEETs). Additionally it will increase our resources for looking at mentoring traditions, models and effectiveness in the Global South, thanks to the expertise of the EMCC’s members.
We truly believe that one-to-one support is an essential part of the education and empowerment process. Whilst for the more privileged this may happen organically, through family friends, parents, relations and teachers with skills and experience, these resources are rarely available to women and girls from poorer backgrounds, and may be specifically denied to them due to their sex.
In our experience, mentoring increases retention by helping women and girls to reflect upon their goals and how to achieve them and offering advice and support in times of stress and crisis.
Jazmen, a graduate of our partner school in the Philippines, explains how mentoring helped her: “My two years of training taught me the importance of having a positive attitude. Each student is assigned a mentor, who listens, advises and encourages. Those mentoring sessions enlightened me about myself and helped me handle tough times at work and in my family. In my two years at FPTI, my life changed.”
Education is about so much more than qualifications or certificates, and we’re happy to be part of a network that reflects this.