Mike is a Konexio-certified trainer working with our partner Jesuit Refugee Service in Malawi. We asked him to tell us about his experience as a trainer for Konexio’s Digital Inclusion Program (DIP) in Dzaleka Refugee Camp. Dzaleka is home to over 50,000 refugees who are barred from formal employment locally. Through the DIP, our beneficiaries overcome this barrier by gaining access to the global digital job market. Mike is one of 11 individuals in Malawi who benefited from Konexio’s train-the-trainers model since 2016. Thanks to his training, he can now effectively share his knowledge of the most in-demand digital skills with refugees seeking digital employment.
Tell us a little about yourself and your role.
My name is Mike, I am an entrepreneur, teacher, coach, software developer, and currently a DIP Facilitator.
What drew you to digital freelancing training?
Given my background in digital skills and technologies, I was particularly interested in Konexio’s Training of the Trainer Program. It was a great opportunity to expand my skill set and push myself as a trainer. Now, I am part of the JRS team qualified to help students participating in the third DIP cohort.
What impact do you think your work has?
I am committed to working hard, being a mentor, and bringing out the best in others. I took up this work for the same reasons. It makes me happy to see students who had no idea or access to digital skills or the digital economy now be able to navigate and pursue opportunities within it.
What do you enjoy most about your work? What part of it is the most challenging?
I enjoy teaching students the necessary tools they need to be successful digital freelancers. It brings me great joy to see my students gain confidence and go far with their new digital skills. The most challenging part is ensuring that all students are able to realize their full potential in the digital economy.
What do you think is the most valuable skill students get from their digital skills and freelance training?
I believe all the skills they learn are good, but never enough: technology is always advancing. This is why Konexio’s curriculum is constantly updated with the newest in-demand skills and materials.
What’s one key piece of advice you usually give your students?
My advice is: nothing is impossible, with faith, love, and patience we all meet at the top.
What’s the most valuable lesson you have learned from your students over the years?
My students taught me to have faith in the process. When I first began instructing the DIP courses and telling my students that they will be able to find digital employment opportunities, I was nervous-I had no proof. But we all stayed committed, trained hard, and worked together. Now, they are my proof that it is possible!
What has been your biggest achievement so far as a DIP trainer?
Implementing the career specialization process for our students. This process gives our students extra resources to pursue unique career paths suited to their personal interests. It has allowed for the students to engage more meaningfully in our program.
What are you most excited about in the next digital skills training?
I am excited to learn from our successes and shortcomings in order to make the next cohort even more successful. I am looking forward to implementing new, innovative solutions with the next team!