We asked the regional vice-director to pass out certificates. The director, who arranged the sessions was on a month-long vacation. Two of the workers told us they cut their vacations short to come to training. Was the pressure ever on us to make it worth their effort!
Four weeks later and we celebrated the first ILDC training in this regional office.
Kemin Social Administration - September 4
Kemin is a village about thirty miles from Tokmok. Some of the people in Kemin heard about the trainings in Tokmok and asked us to come and to speak to them about a foster care program. Because foster care is a new concept to them, we started with the basics - the six components of a foster care program. Seventeen social workers and local administrators attended. Days later, we were told that after our session, the group met the following day to process what we had talked about and plan for the future. We were absolutely thrilled.
Seventeen social workers and local administrators attended this foster care workshop. Foster care is a new concept to them and one of the first questions I had was , "what is a foster parent?"
Our Major Training Event - September 10 and 11 - Caring for Traumatized Children Who Have Been Sexually Abused
We have been planning this major training event for over six weeks. A lot of time and planning went into this event. Natalia, our most competent translator, worked hard for several weeks in translating training material and PowerPoint slides. We wanted this to be the very best! We want to thank a fellow American social worker, Jerry Heatherly for providing the funding for this event. Twenty-five social workers came from four different regions. Some came from a distance three hours away. The training was held at one of Mercy Foundation's fine schools. The participants were treated to wonderful lunches and snacks, useful training materials and two days of sharing and talking together. Many of them commented that the information learned in the training was new to them. They were so appreciative. Five orphanages were represented in this group of participants along with family social workers.
After we finished processing the two days and asking for any additional questions or comments, we passed out the certificates. When that was done the group just sat there. One of participants raised her hand and pointed to some material I had skipped due to time considerations. I guess she was shy to mention it before then. They all said "we want that too," so we stayed another 20+ minutes. Staying overtime voluntarily, that is new to me!
This was the first time David and I have co-trained together...it was great fun and the participants really appeciated his involvement.
This was Natalia's first experience at translating for two days, five hours each day. She did an excellent job and is growing in her knowledge of child welfare.
As we process the events around our experiences in training the workers here, I will look back on them as enriching, stretching, energizing....absolutely wonderful. We look to the future not knowing exactly what lies ahead...we just know what our hearts say....we will be back. There is much work to be done for the children of Kyrgyzstan.
Throughout the two days, David reminded this fine group of professionals, that they are healing people. What a way to end our training time here (for now!).
The Journey Continues......