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Hear from Athraa and Abubakr, two recent Jordan DIP graduates!

Ring the graduation bells! Athraa and Abubakr have graduated from the Jordan DIP!

On May 5th, our students officially received their Konexio Digital Inclusion Program certification. Everyone has worked hard to make this dream a reality - Konexio, JRS Jordan, the ICT trainers, and most of all, our students!

We asked Abubakr and Athraa to share their reflections on the program and their plans for the future.

Abubakr and Athraa’s interviews have been lightly edited for clarity and accuracy.

Q1: How would you describe the feeling of graduating from the Digital Inclusion Program (DIP)?

Abubaker: The DIP program is one of the most useful trainings I have ever taken. It is rich in many skills and knowledge that I have been taking for six months, so graduating from this program means a great achievement.

Athraa: A great feeling, makes me feel proud that I have achieved a goal in my life and acquired skills that made me stronger.

Q2: What skills have you learned through this project and what will they help you achieve?

Abubaker: During these six months, I gained many skills and knowledge, I became well familiar with many valuable things including advanced web search, writing for the web, submitting proposals and bids, and maintaining negotiation and dialogue with clients on an online platform, in addition to managing many activities within a timeline. To be honest, this knowledge and skills have definitely helped me to become a freelancer on many online platforms, furthermore, now I am using these skills and knowledge to freely communicate with clients, and as a result, I’ve successfully got a small project with a tiny financial offer, but this small project was a great opportunity to put all skills I have taken from this training and to reflect this experience to my classmates so as to see the strengths and weaknesses.

Athraa: I learned all computer skills, But I specialized in the field that I want, which is graphic design.

Q3: How has your interpretation of freelancing online changed throughout the course?

Abubaker: Actually, as I went through the pros and cons of a freelancer in this course in addition to my little experience in this short period of time, I understood that being a freelancer means becoming your own boss, so I have to develop my plan including capacity building, financial and activities, my role also would be to follow my plan and make self-assessment to meet expectations.

Athraa: I used to think that self-employment does not bring a good income, and it is fake and not real. But after I joined the course and acquired information, learned important skills, and entered the field of self-employment, my view of self-employment changed a lot.

Q4: What was your favorite memory from the DIP?

Abubaker: The training was rich with course materials and many other activities that our facilitator put her efforts to make the whole process move on smoothly, so we had time to socialize and have social activities to break the routine, one of my favorite memory from this training is the times when our facilitator asked everyone to bring the best from our home town, including puzzles or social activities, so these activities emphasized our relation to become as one family, and it was a good chance as I became more familiar with all classmates’ hometown.

Athraa: Before entering the course, I was lost, I did not know what to do in my day, and I suffered from loneliness, but this course gave meaning to my life and made me define my field of work. The special memory is my feeling of pride after completing projects in the field of graphic design, my smile at the time, and the feeling of strength after every achievement.

Q5: What parts of the course do you find most exciting?

Abubaker: The whole course was exciting. In particular, the huge number of assignments [that are based on] a real-world problem. It was so exciting to challenge ourselves with this number of assignments, because it was a chance to reflect on the knowledge and skills we gained, and to see how we can respond to client’s job offer.

Athraa: The practical section is the most exciting, especially after I specialized in graphic design and working on great projects.

Q6: What was the greatest challenge you encountered throughout these past 6 months?

Abubaker: As a refugee and a father of three kids, the great challenge to me was how to manage my own responsibilities among my family, and how to keep up with 4 days a week attending the JRS learning center to participate in the classroom, navigating training materials and working on the huge numbers of assignments, despite the facilitator efforts to handle any difficulties we may face and mitigating the learning environment with social activities, but it was so challenging to me to manage all these things, however, I did.

Athraa: The greatest challenge I faced was myself and the people who frustrated me and reduced my ability to succeed and reach, as I did not know my true strength.  But at some point, I faced all this and decided to discover my strength, make meaning for my life, become stronger, and prove to myself and everyone that I am able to succeed, work, and reach my goals.

Q7: How would you describe your relationship with your ICT trainers?

Abubaker: Our ICT trainers were the sources of energy where I get the strength and courage to complete this course, it would be difficult to keep up with this training unless there were trainers like I had, who pushed and tried their best to make accomplishing this training possible, so I do get on well with trainers as well as the onsite coordinator.

Athraa: My relationship with them was very good, they helped us a lot and we gained a lot of information from them about computers and self-employment and how to determine our field of work and find suitable job opportunities.

Q8: What are your plans for after graduation?

Abubaker: I already started my plan, which consists of many activities such as being an active freelancer in the online platform, which means having daily communication in terms of submitting bids and proposals, and contributing to the online discussion forum, my plan also includes capacity building, so I will be seeking for any online courses to gain advanced skills on data analysis, visualization, data scraping, and working on VBA macro that is highly demanded by clients.

Athraa: I plan to expand my work in the field of graphic design on freelancing platforms and to have a private income from this work, as well as a private brand in the future.

Q9: Would you recommend this program to a friend?

Abubaker: As a matter of fact, this program is suited to people like us who lack income activities due to living in marginalization, so this program would be a way forward to equip vulnerable people with skills and knowledge to get access to job opportunities, so I highly recommend this program.

Athraa: Yes, of course, I highly recommend it.  Where this program is unique and aims to provide us with a private business that provides us with a good income for living.

Q10: What word would you use to describe the Konexio project? Why this word?

Abubaker: I am really excited about this unique project, and this is a good chance to give big thanks to Konexio for offering me this opportunity to join this training because this training has helped me to discover opportunities around the globe and to let others see what skills I have and what services I can offer to them, this is the whole point, while from the other hands, the project offered a safe place where I Interacted and gained social skills from people with different backgrounds and views, this is because there was helpful facilitator and coordinator, well trained and cultural oriented, they put all their efforts to make this possible, I am really grateful to them.

Athraa: The appropriate word is "perfect." because It focuses on a lot of important information in various fields and allows students to identify the areas of work that they want and motivates them to succeed in them. 

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