12 young people are part of this Focus Group. All of them have finished their vocational training courses, by now, except from one, who is waiting on his course to start on November. 8 out of 12 have chosen English or Italian. 2 of them have chosen cooking; 1 has chosen graphic design and another one, secretary.
For those ones whose choice was foreign languages, we found it hard to place them in a working environment where they could practice their profession. This happened due to many factors, but also because, an upgraded level of their language skills is necessary for them to be accepted as interns. These young professionals have proposed that the expenses meant for their professional tool kits, to be used for improving their language skills, instead, which would serve to better chances of being hired by telecommunication companies, such as Call Centers. However, so far, Call Centers have not welcomed the idea of offering working experiences to these young people, even for free. They claimed that there is a high number of qualified, professional English speakers in Albania, so it did not seem efficient for their businesses to risk loss by testing the knowledge of our youth group. Further, training them inside their companies would not be worth the time and money, either. Therefore, spending the intended tool kits’ money in upgrading their language level, would probably be the right solution.
Regarding to the girl who got her professional certificate in Secretary, the situation appears more hopeful. For the moment, we are holding on to the promise given by the Ministry of Education, after having contacted the Secretary General of the Ministry. They accepted her as practitioner and the plan is for her to start as soon as the building of the Ministry gets fully reconstructed.
As for the one graduated on “graphic-design”, she will do her internship at MWL offices in Tirana, assisting our designer. The graphic design agencies that we contacted did not agree to offer working experience to her.
21 young people were initially interested and after 16 personal meetings and interviews, a number of 12 young people were selected to become part of the Tirana Focus Group. 3 young boys have dropped out as they started working and it was impossible for them to follow their vocational courses, as well as meetings. Another girl had to drop out due to family’s health issues that she had to take care of.
This Youth Group has been assisted by the Youth project, covering their enrollment fees and travelling expenses. As well as, providing reimbursement for all the money spent on chancelleries for those studying English and Italian. Cooking course students were reimbursed for their food expenses and the purchased tools needed for practicing cooking during their course.