Campaign Leaders Biography:
Sara is the manager of the WE Women campaign, she is specialized in languages, international relations and human rights. She has attended her bachelor and master degrees in Italy, but throughout her university career she has undertaken exchange semesters in China, Brazil, Colombia and Morocco.
Sara is very passionate about promoting gender equality and working in community development projects. She has extensive professional knowledge related to project research, planning and management in the field of women’s issues, human rights and community development. She has undertaken several internships specifically in India and Austria, where she is currently working in the United Nations Office for drugs and crime prevention.
Sara is the WE Project Coordinator in Pakistan, she is specialized in psychology and clinical psychology.
Sara is very passionate about community development and women’s issues, in fact since 2016 she supports the girls in Pakistan by educating them and by raising awareness about health and hygiene. Specifically, she has an extended experience in developing learning activities on how to use pads, how to discard them, on what is goodhand and bad hand, as well as on women’s health such as breast cancer and other female problems. Sara is committed to her voluntary job because she wants to restore girls dignity and respect. She is very determined in pursuing her projects even if it can be challenging, especially in such a male dominated society.
Women employment in Pakistan:
In 2021, women in Pakistan still face difficulties to enter the workforce: it is only the 10% of women that work in urban Pakistan. Lack of female work is mainly due to social and cultural restriction, rigid gender roles, patriarchal society and lack of education.
It is interesting to note that:
To control women’s behavior and to protect their honour many men restrict women from leaving home and, if they do go out, they are controlled. Women therefore seek work that can be done at home. Traditional honor codes also influence job selection and create barriers to jobs outside what is considered socially acceptable. These translates in attitudes that promote gender inequality,
Lack of education:
Lack of education is constraint to women’s work. More than half of the Pakistani women have not completed primary education and only one third have attained higher than primary education. This limits women’s access to jobs, even those more socially acceptable such as public sector employment in education or health.
The mentoring programme promoted by We, The World in Pakistan has the objective of creating a mentoring and career orientation directed to young girls aged 15-18 in the Saint Peter High School - located in the city of Taxila. The selected group will be supported by female mentors - managers, entrepreneurs, professionals - who make their time and skills available to support and accompany their professional growth. The idea is to provide a direct link between young girls and female entrepreneurs in order to share experiences, provide advices, provide trainings and gain a direct insight of the working activities. Through coaching and discussion, the mentees are helped to reflect on their skills in the training, work and social fields and to focus on their professional future.
The mentoring project will take the form of a Group Mentoring, which involves one adult mentor forming a relationship with a group of young people. The mentor assumes the role of leader and provides advices and trainings to the group.
The type of mentoring will be “School-to-career”: this model incorporates a more intentional effort to help young people explore a career direction, and is particularly effective for high school students, who tend to drop out of traditional mentoring programs. The activities between the mentor and the mentee in this model may include the following:
• Career exploration. A young person follows one or more adult employees on the job over the long term to learn more about a particular occupation. Career exploration is a more in- depth process than just job shadowing.
• Job/life skills. Mentors help youth develop the skills they need to get a job and succeed in the workplace. Youth learn skills, such as how to prepare a resumé, manage time and resolve workplace conflicts.
• Postschool training: Mentors provide information related to postschool training, including training opportunities in the local area.
In order to select the mentors, the WE woman team has conducted a survey directed to young girls of the selected school. According to the results of the survey, the mentoring programme is essential for young girls and their future because they want to be independent from their parents and their future husbands in order to fulfill their needs. The girls already understand the struggles that mothers face in Pakistani society, they know that having a job is essential in order to ensure their children the basic needs and the opportunity to fully develop - which includes medical care, proper nutrition and education.
All the girls present during the survey are interested in stitching and parlour training, we will therefore concentrate our resources to implement the project on these two areas.
The overall expected outcomes of the project are to create a professional connection between female professional workers and female young students in order to foster a personal growth for both mentors and mentees and to promote professional attitudes, skills and goals to mentees. The mentor is a guide who helps mentees to become aware of their skills with a focus on the here and now, of mentees professional future with a focus on building their personal vision and steps to plan their desired career path. The mentoring program will cover the following modules:
- Motivations and attitudes: what I like
- Skills: what I know, what I can do
- Aspirations: what I want to achieve in the future
- Profession: what I would like to be paid for
- Steps: how to plan and achieve my career path