Recommendations for adult educators
Handbok för mentorer (Swedish language)
Manuale per tutor ed educatori per adulti (Italian language)
Adult educators working with migrant women have to play a lot of roles with a goal to understand, support, encourage, suggest possible ways of integration.
They have to be psychologists, mentors, supporters, and friends who can encourage and empower migrant women if they show abilities to reach ambitious goals in life.
Support and understanding
One of the main aspects of mentoring and leading migrant women into their own business is support and understanding. Adult educator/migrant women mentor should know vulnerability aspects and understand a migrant woman migration story and roots. This helps to understand how a migrant woman’s skills can be developed and which are the most important to develop. Usually, all migrant integration programs start from developing language skills, but there are other options to support and empower migrant women.
Adult educators working with migrant women should remember to encourage and support in career pathway and stimulate solidarity between migrant women. Changes start in small steps.
An adult educator working with migrant women has to create a learning environment favourable for growth, adaptation and development of professional and personal skills. The adult educator has to develop a social contact network of active migrant women who could potentially become mentors or provide advice and support.
Two empowerment directions could support migrant women: on the one hand – an adult educator whom migrant women meet in the very beginning. The educator could inform her about migrant women self-help groups, about useful network and other active persons on the local or regional levels. On the second hand, depending on the social network/group scale and characteristics, such group could help them to develop language skills faster and also expand possibilities of establishing own business as one of the fastest ways of integration into labour market.
It is important for adult educators to see the benefits to the local, national, regional or international community in helping migrant women to realize their potential, to reach their goals, to encourage them to follow their dreams.
Principles of learning for migrants
Adult educator has to recognise, diagnose not only learning needs, learning style but also learning skills. Different background of migrant women requires adult educator to choose different methods of working, giving consultation. Adult educators should be able to use different diagnostic tools to identify motivation, goals, needs, cultural and religion traditions, family circumstances and wish/dreams of migrant women. Adult educators should use holistic approach to each migrant woman to help her to identify the best path of integration in labour market.
The most important questions which should be addressed by adult educators:
- How can vulnerable migrant women develop leadership skills?
- How to support them in unfolding their abilities in difficult life situations?
Adult educators working with migrant women should emphasize and define a leader as a person who takes responsibility to take actions to reach goals. Adult educators should encourage and empower migrant women to lead her own life and support/develop her leadership skills.
EMPOWER ADULT EDUCATORS SELF-CHECK LIST
|Empower Adult Educators,
check your situation with a “X”
|I have it||I need
|I have a long-term vision as educator and continually take steps toward achieving it|
|I regularly look to streamline and improve my teaching process|
|I approach each challenge with fresh eyes and look for out-of-the-box solutions|
|I collaborate with learners to brainstorm and problem-solve|
|I consider learners’ perspectives and try to give suggestions that work for everyone|
|I am able to quickly adapt to new business ideas and change course, if necessary|
|I am committed my learners personal growth and regularly set goals for them|
|I have a lot of ideas about how to improve learners’ chances in the market|
|I value learning and regularly seek opportunities to learn something new about teaching|
|I like to figure things out myself and I create new models for my job as educator|
Exercise examples for adult educators to work with migrant women on how to start up your own enterprise
To create hand-outs with different role-plays.
Stefany is an immigrant in Sweden. She moved here with her husband and two children. Her husband works as an engineer for an international manufacture. Stefany mostly takes care of their children (who go to primary school) and attends on-line Swedish classes. She considers opening a small floral store in the neighbourhood. She likes working with flowers and wants to make her own contribution to the family budget. Her husband is not convinced as he thinks their children and home should be her priority. He does not prohibit her to try her idea out, but hopes that Stefany would give up on it by finding neither finances, no support. To start, Stefany needs a small loan to rent premises, buy basic equipment, decoration, furniture and fresh flowers.
1. The studying group can assign the roles among themselves:
2. To develop and play different scenarios, arguments and dialogues, Stefany would need to interact with each of the characters in order to start up her own enterprise.
Toino is a Nigerian refugee woman living in Italy. She came to the country five years ago together with her younger siblings. She was taking care of them and parallel to that taking a language and gardening course for immigrants. Because of her studying and family obligations, she did not become fluent in Italian, but she is pretty good in gardening. Her ambition was to find a job as a gardener for private households. Finding such job proved to be very difficult. After a long period of search she became depressed and desperate. However, she has got a personal mentor assigned to her by the local Employment Agency. The experienced mentor has quickly identified that Toino was a very skilful baker. She used to work in a bakery back home and knew a lot about bread baking. During Covid-19 restrictions there was a growing demand for bread delivery to many local households of elderly citizens. Potentially, Toino could bake bread at home and deliver it during the day. She was excited about such an opportunity. However, she lacks entrepreneurial experience, language knowledge and start capital. The mentor suggested that she connects with other unemployed migrant women from her language course to team up for the idea.
Step 1. Help Toino to prepare a presentation for her idea. Think about the main and secondary elements she has to highlight to convince other women to join her.
Step 2. Help the team to make the planning for their enterprise:
- a name and promotion,
2. Switch the roles in the scenario and in turns take on the shoes of possible characters in the scenario.