The Positive Power of Yes: The Success Story of Waed Bsharat
Waed Bsharat is from a village called Tammun. She recently graduated with a degree in business administration from Al Quds Open University in Tubas. She heard about Tomorrow’s Youth Organization from a friend, who said that TYO was a fun and interesting place to volunteer. Waed always volunteered at the university because it was required, but had never volunteered because she wanted to do something for herself. When she heard there were kids involved, she immediately knew she wanted to volunteer because she loves kids. She found out she could register to volunteer with TYO at her university, so she signed up to volunteer.
The Summer 2016 session is Waed’s first time to volunteer with TYO. She is a volunteer with the Academic program and teaches the students Arabic, English, and math. In addition to volunteering with the Academic program, Waed was asked to help as a bus monitor. She rides the bus 6 times each day to bring children to TYO from Old Askar and New Askar refugee camps and take them home again.
What has your professional experience been like outside of TYO?
I worked for a month with a finance organization in a village called Tubas. I went to the administration of the organization and asked if I could intern with them for a month without pay to gain experience. I did office work and site visits for loan review. At the end of the month, they offered me a job. However, I didn’t accept the position because the organization was a loan based organization and this type of work doesn’t interest me. I did a second internship for 2 months with an organization that offers training courses for technical skills and gives certifications after two years of training. I did marketing to get people to sign up for the trainings. This organization also offered me a position to continue marketing working from home after the internship, but I could not accept this job because I do not have internet access at home.
What is your career plan?
I hope to find a job, but my dream is to continue my studies and get a Master’s degree in accounting. I like to take business concentrated courses, but many people have recommended that I continue my studies in accounting. In the future, an accounting degree will open more options for employment because there is a higher demand for accounting than finance. I am better at accounting than finance and I want to study something different than my Bachelor’s degree. I like to climb the workplace ladder step by step and slowly. With my Master’s degree, I want to be a university professor for business administration and accounting.
What do you look for in a work environment?
For me, an important thing is the location. The workplace has to be between Nablus and Jenin and close enough to commute every day. I don’t mind doing administrative work or following directions of an employer as long as the directions are part of my work responsibilities, nothing illegal, and accepted by my religion. Loans and interest are not allowed in my religion, so this work is not acceptable in my faith.
What skills have you gained from your time with TYO so far?
I have gained many skills that have to do with children. I have learned how to deal with them, how to work with them in a proper way that is nice, and how to gain their respect and make them want to work with you. I learned how to benefit children and how to make information stick in their minds in a good way. I have increased my leadership skills and have learned how to be a leader in the classroom and how to bring people around her. If you gain the students’ love and respect, they will listen.
How has volunteering at TYO impacted your life?
Volunteering at TYO has impacted me emotionally. When I first enter TYO and see the kids, they take away all the negative feelings and give me positive energy. Whatever happened and whatever problems there are, I forget them all when I see the kids. They have made me a more positive person. If I can balance work and TYO, I hope to keep volunteering in the future.
Waed is a volunteer in the Academic program, which is part of STEP! II, a youth employability, empowerment, and community leadership initiative supported by Abdul Hameed Shoman Foundation.
Interview conducted by Lindsey, the International Internship and Fellowship Coordinator, and translated by Rawan, the Women's Empowerment Program Assistant.