ORT training improves lives in Russia


18 November 2009 ORT training improves lives in Russia The life-changing impact World ORT has on people who undergo Graduate Entrepreneurship Training through IT (GET-IT) training it provides in partnership with Hewlett-Packard has been highlighted at the HP GET-IT Annual Conference in Cairo. The ORT-KesherNet Centre in Tambov, Russia won the HP GET-IT Impact Award because of the success of its students in setting up their own businesses and the positive impact its work has had on the local community. Other award categories at the conference were the HP GET-IT Best Achiever and the HP GET-IT Implementation Project. The awards in all three categories are given to the organisations that have demonstrated the most innovative ideas and best practices in implementing the HP GET-IT concept into their training schedules for developing entrepreneurial skills of young unemployed people in their communities. At last years HP GET-IT Conference, which was held in Brussels, World ORT won a prize for the project it implemented at its six initial GET-IT centres in Moscow, Ekaterinburg, Tambov, Volgograd and Tula Breaking the Digital Divide: Business and IT Skills for Underserved Population Groups. World ORTs partnership with Hewlett-Packard gives people such as Vadin Oumansky and Tatiana Podzerey a new start in life. This programme has been particularly useful in helping women and deaf and hard-of-hearing students and is the model for four of the new centres which cater for these population groups. The Tambov centres entry focused on two of the 80 people it trains monthly, Vadim Oumansky, 27, a university graduate who pulled himself out of unemployment by setting up a civil engineering firm, and Tatiana Podzerey, 26, who left a job as a decorator to set up a beauty salon. Both of them found the training they received at Tambov invaluable, said ORT KesherNet Centre GET-IT trainer Dina Bruske. The skills they learned with us in the use of information technology have really helped them in developing their businesses, Ms Bruske said. Thanks to skilful use of the Internet Vadim learned of low-cost bricks, which dont require baking, and became the first local supplier; and Tatiana discovered the existence of special equipment for nail design which she is placing in her salon, again the first service of its kind in the town. And when the economic downturn necessitated a change in direction for Vadims business he was also able to assess the financial implications thanks to the training he received. The Tambov training centres Start in Life project, through which it implements HPs GET-IT programme, targets 16- to 25-year-olds but, as Vadim and Tatiana show, the doors are open to anyone committed to setting up a business. Before this project, young people here did not have the possibility to receive business organisation skills, Ms Bruske said. We teach them how to set up a business and how to run it and develop it competently using the various technological tools available. The centre also provides consulting and training services to operating businesses. Our work promotes the creation of sustainable workplaces and steady incomes and we have contributed to an easing of local unemployment, Ms Bruske said. It is difficult to earn enough money to support a family in our city but graduating from our courses helped Vadim and Tatiana to jump the hurdles towards setting up successful businesses. A few days before World ORTs success at the HP GET-IT Annual Conference, the ORT Mishpateinu High School in Kazan won a contest for the best project report at the HP Digital Forum in Suzdal, Russia. The winning report on ORT Mishpateinus use of its HP mobile class included a Power Point presentation together with a video. We didnt expect to win, said Deputy Principal Viatcheslav Fiyalo. I attribute our success to showing how the mobile class has played a pivotal role in developing our students multimedia work skills. Mr Fiyalo said the HP mobile class had allowed the school to expand the application of IT into the educational process. Thanks to there having been an ORT Technology Centre at the school for a long time, our teachers are already adept at using information technology in class. But the ORT Technology Centre cant meet all the demands placed upon it simultaneously and thats where the HP mobile class comes in. In addition to scientific and technological subjects, the mobile class is also used in the teaching of language and literature. World ORT and HP are more than doubling the size of their GET-IT partnership with the opening of 10 new training centres in Russia and Ukraine. With the new centres in Moscow, Tula, Kineshma, Rybinsk, Saransk, Murmansk, Slavutich, Kiev and Lviv operational, World ORT will be involved in half of the GET-IT centres situated in Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Belarus and Kazakhstan.