Challenged to Grow by Sónia Magaia (Mozambique) interview, TFT Youth country team facilitator. By Carmen Opperman

What were some of the highlights you experienced as a facilitator in the TFT Youth Training?

To see the girls actively involved in learning as a way of acquiring direction, light and knowledge that leads them to their individual futures and influences the family, community the country, and the universe.

What challenges did you experience?

My lack of experience in facilitating sessions using TFT methodologies was a great challenge mainly in the domain of contents and implementation of the processes and some tools used in the training. It was also difficult to manage the responsibility of remaining in the training room alone for the guidance of some thematic sections. It was a situation that required a lot of reading and prior preparation as an individual.

Having various responsibilities such as logistics, the translation of some contents, and taking notes for the summaries of the discussions during the training was not easy and we lacked safe preventive measures for the prevention and protection of COVID19 in the venue which also did not offer appropriate conditions for carrying out training of this nature. It also would have been good to have more reading materials on what they were learning to distribute to participants.

What were the key lessons you took from the experience?

I learned the use of posing questions about the contents that were reflected and commented on in small groups, which led them to explore their ideas to the fullest. The use of creativity – diversification of work and the permission of dynamics that create humor in the room made the environment more fun, light, and pleasant and motivated the participants to participate. Active Listening and making a summary of key aspects raised and presented by them was also a new skill for me. In addition, I learned the use of practices that stimulate more positive energies and raise emotions and contextualization of contents – presenting examples with facts linked to situations that happen in real life in the community to make them more accessible and applicable.

How has the training benefited young people from your group?

The group learned greater openness in sharing individual experiences during plenary discussions. There was easy assimilation of contents and TFT tools, and greater responsibility in learning and independence in their individual use of the challenges that are oppressive in the lives of people in the community and they proposed practical plans for the resolution. Participants were also encouraged to remain focused on transformation and development of the individual, families, community, the country, and nature as a whole.

What are they doing with the knowledge/skills they gained from the training?

One participant shared the following: I am using the knowledge and skills I have acquired in my organisation in identifying the problems that communities face and transforming them into challenges. We are drafting a proposal called “ELA FOR EXAMPLE” ‘She as an Example’ and submitted it. The aim is to empower young girls in identifying their problems and conscientize them to break the culture of silence and actively participate in the decision-making processes of their lives.

How do you think the Youth Training process can help TFT become a global Movement?

By continuing with the training that has been carried out annually, involving countries from different continents, and introducing the Diploma course in the same way as the introductory courses worldwide with the use of technologies.