Impact Journalism Day by Sparknews: A better society - No. 28

With the right help, students are discovering their futures

Wadjihni provides students opportunities to discover what they really want to do in future, by inviting professionals to share their work experiences with them and give more clarity in choosing their desired career.
Wadjihni provides students opportunities to discover what they really want to do in future, by inviting professionals to share their work experiences with them and give more clarity in choosing their desired career.PHOTO: WADJIHNI

ALGERIA • Wadjihni is an initiative developed by three young Algerian women targeting high schoolers and university students between the ages of 15 and 20.

They aim to help them make positive decisions with regards to their studies and other aspects of their lives.

They also provide counselling sessions and self-discovery courses, in order to help them "discover the best version of themselves".

The charitable organisation, Wadjihni is made up of its three founders and nine teachers, and relies on resources provided through donations.

Their work takes place during five-day camps that allow participants to develop a clearer view of their future and to help them make better choices.

 

The initiative is the collaborative brainchild of a group of young Algerians who were passionate about, and actively engaged in, the work of charitable organisations.

The period preceding high school final exams is a time that especially draws students who would like to lessen the stress of exam preparation.

"We have succeeded in convincing the parents of young high schoolers in many districts of Algeria to allow their children to discover the experience of self-reflection, of meditation, and consideration of their future goals," Ms Chahinez Bouazza, the founder of Wadjihni explained.

"We provide the methods and means to young people who solicit our help to have a clearer vision of what they genuinely want to study, and of the job they would like for the future.

"This can be an equally decisive period for students lacking in motivation or who are having difficulty continuing with their university course. They may be in need of advice and ongoing support in order to make the decision to change course or begin another educational path in serenity," Ms Bouazza said.

Ms Bouazza and the two other teachers who launched Wadjihni, Ms Amel Aoudi and Ms Zineb Belhabib, were inspired by their own life experiences. On top of the medical careers that they have pursued, they have also taken on supplementary university degrees in either languages or accounting.

"Every one of us can push our limits and go in search of our ambitions in order to be certain of them," the team said.

Workshops offered by the Wadjihni team include detailed presentations about jobs and higher education.

"Young people, especially those needing to make decisions about their studies, need to be aware of the real-life experiences of people who have chosen particular career paths," team members said.

Thus, they have invited lawyers, journalists and other professionals who can present their career as it really is, with its advantages and disadvantages, as opposed to how it is perceived by students.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 25, 2016, with the headline 'With the right help, students are discovering their futures'. Print Edition | Subscribe