Enhancing communication skills for refugees in Sudan through vocational courses

How UNICEF is supporting refugees through vocational training

Nada Mohamed
Erena Sewing
02 September 2021

On November 4th, 2020, 13-year-old Erena flew to Sudan, from Homera, Ethiopia; along with her family, seeking safety, and security. The day she arrived she lost connection with her friends, preventing her from communicating with her closest network, she couldn’t get in touch with them or share her concerns as before.  

As part of UNICEF's Communication for Development (C4D) funded project in partnership with Norwegian Church Aid (NCA). C4D community volunteers, were conducting house to house visits, disseminating key messages about disease outbreaks and nutrition. This is when they came in contact with Erena’s Family. Erena’s mother explained to the C4D volunteers,  that she was feeling sad and emotionally impacted because of losing her closest friends, refusing to go outside and struggling to find new friends.

The C4D community volunteers explained the activities which are taking place at the women centre, including youth engagement activities such as life skills sessions, including sewing classes, and communication clubs,  to empower young girls, and improve their self-resilience skills, through recreational activities. In addition, the community outreach volunteers, have explained how all the activities are conducted in a safe manner inside the women and girls-friendly space (WGSS). Besides that, Erena will have a chance to meet new friends similar to her age.

Erena is now attending the sewing course, which is included in the project, alongside with 9 girls. She managed to build relationships with new friends, coming to the session together and having a conversation inside the women centre.  

Community gathering

The women and girls centre (WGSS) supports refugees resident in Tunaytba camp, with approximately 400 visitors (72% Women and 28% girls) on monthly basis, the center is funded by MFA and ACT Caritas, in addition to UNICEF, C4D Project , which includes various activities of awareness raising, communication clubs, and vocational training.

Different sessions on various topics have been conducted with adolescent boys focusing on communication skills include how to build communication with parents and friends, trust building, team and leadership building, in addition to Decision making, NCA has used the life skills curriculum for adolescent girls and boys developed by UNICEF, with a total of 204 participant (132 Boys and  108 girls).

Girl writing on schoolboard

The vocational training is attended by approximately 18 girls, it includes sewing, knitting and handcrafting activities, to enhance the privacy of participants NCA conducted these activities inside women and girls safe space enabling girls to have safe and private environment.

The communication Club ( provision of Arabic and English classes to refugees in Tunaytba camp): two classes are taught within the day, for young girls below the age of 16. The language classes provide the students with the basic skills to communicate in the local language, as well as English. At the moment, 50 girls are attending the classes in two sessions.