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Establishing Social Enerprise











IT and Woman Empowerment

Case study: Natalija


My name is Natalija T. and I am residing in Belgrade, and am a graduated geographer. Recently I have become Serbia's first certified instructor for the World Health Organizations' (WHO's) therapeutic "Aviva" exercises. My biennial work has been directed at the prevention and management of hormonal disbalance of the body, in a completely natural way: health through physical activity. A month ago I have become the consultant of the renowned Belgrade clinic which was actually the first to have looked into the fantastic potential of this type of activity. However the path to its realization wasn't easy at all.

The preceding year of my life was marked by a very hard period. Despite being highly educated, creative, innovative, and all of the effort which I have placed into this idea (in this period I wrote three guides on the subject of physical exercises in healthcare), the much aviated and expected realization of my business plans never came through. My self-confidence had seriously started to waver.

I arrived at the IAN Telecentre in the spring of 2011, completely unexpectedly, (I was sent through by the National employment service), but as far as I am concerned just at the right moment. Courses at the IAN Telecentre have marked, and with their joyous strands, threaded my spring. Nearly three months that I have spent studying various contents and skills that are available in the Telecentre, have become that small part of the mosaic which was missing in order for my business story to be completely encircled. A fresh, new, approach to valorization of business ideas provided through the courses for a business administrator, and one for active participation and job selection, substantiated by new insights which occurred due to various computer skills were, besides some happy circumstances, one of the leading forces behind the positive events in my life. Upon suggestions made by my lecturers, shortly after the courses began, I sent out a chain letter regarding my vocation, to correct addresses and within a short time received some feedback. In this period IAN Telecentre represented a base of sorts, from which I was able to sort out some of the specific problems in my life, where I socialized, and recharged with positive energy.

With each passing day, modern technology and cutting edge applications together with expert and creative lecturers, aroused our curiosity. Irrespective of whether we were complete beginners, for the first time sitting behind the computer, or as was the case with me, were individuals that had some knowledge and/ experience in the IT world, the outcome was the same. Young and old, from various backgrounds, life experiences and occupations, we all had an opportunity to be useful and add to the variety and completeness of the lectures, whilst helping one another thrive and concur various aspects of the coursework. I was especially glad to see that the resistance which was expressed by many individuals, including myself, towards the computer was decreasing on a daily basis, and to upon completion of every module (Windows, Word, Excel, Internet, Access, PowerPoint) be replaced by the interest and desire for further discoveries. I had enjoyed and eagerly awaited each lesson, as we socialized in a pleasant atmosphere, where we acquired new and upgraded existing knowledge and experience. Expert and helpful lecturers and all of the staff in the IAN Telecentre met us half way, wholeheartedly assisted in overcoming any difficulties that we might be facing, provided their help, assistance and genuine support. Along the way I discovered new content at the Telecentre, got acquainted with new courses and course material, of which there is quite enough, so that each person can master the individual skills that they lack.

Final exams had also represented a special experience for which we prepared jointly, which rather than making it unpleasant, turned the examinations into a challenge. Tests were demanding, but this additionally motivated me to give my best and release my own creativity, a fact which always fulfills me. International ECDL certificate which we obtained after completing the courses, as well as the other ones which we gained, provided a special weight and opened further opportunities for me, as if I had undergone further vocational training in the field of computer literacy in any European country. Once you fulfill the international standards you really feel as an important part of the international society. These certificates primarily provided reinforcement of my higher level of knowledge and skills, whilst in practice they proved to be highly valued, and in my case represented kind of a stepping stone which jumpstarted the course of my professional career.

Majority of the people know that in order to be happy and satisfied with your surroundings, and primarily with yourself, one does not need a lot. But still: little bit of effort, good will and support provided at the right time will provide inspiration, whilst your willingness and effort will lead you to accomplish your goals. Only a few things in life can be compared with a dose of satisfaction that we feel once we help a person fulfill their dreams!

Read other stories:

Irena (29): "...Lectures were organised in such a way that the individuals were divided into various groups comprising of individuals of different age and gender. Here I had an amazing opportunity to see the value of accessing the information technology (IT) for females of different age, be it girls, women, and/ ladies in their late fifties. .Once I got employed I was asked whether or not I would have gotten this job had I not known how to use the computer. I remember answering "of course not, but I also wouldn't have gotten any other job either!.." read the whole story
Maida (38) "Life is wondrous, each day is an experience and we are uncertain what it will have in store for us. Faith had a plan for me. I used to be an owner of a party, event, planning company, and at this stage of my life the computer was of little use to me…. Faith played a trick on me. I got divorced and had to share my company offices with my now ex-husband, and was thus forced to automatically close the company. In a very short period of time I was left unemployed… Today my job is to import data into the computer…" read the whole story

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