This month’s Update from the Field comes from fellow, Amalia Frank. Below is an explanation of the Village Enterprise hiring process for our Business Mentors – an intense week of information and training where, at the end of the week, only the finest remain.
Hoima Office EBM Induction Training
The Hoima Office is bustling! In the course of 1½ weeks, we went from moving in to our new office to holding Employed Business Mentor (EBM) induction training. On day 1, we had 8 potential applicants arrive to our new office. The day started off with a bang, with Konstantin and Charles taking the lead and introducing our potential applicants to Village Enterprise, our vision, our mission, our values, and most importantly, our core program. We ran through the Budongo Program, the key reason behind opening this new office, and explained the concepts of Business-in-a-Box and started reviewing the EBM Manual. It was an exciting, but long day – in the end, we had to let someone go – but we knew that it was the right decision to make.
We covered a LOT of ground on Day 2. We finished the review of the EBM Manual and moved on towards reviewing Targeting, Monitoring and Evaluation, and Consumption Expenditure. It was great to see how passionate all of our applicants were, asking questions in order to understand even the most minute details of our M&E and Targeting programs. By the end of the day, you could already see the excitement in their eyes, and the passion growing in them to work with Village Enterprise. As is the norm with our induction process, we let another individual go at the end of the day.
Day 3 continued our review of M&E, Targeting, and Consumption Expenditure. At this point, we also completed a forms review, explaining how to conduct PPIs (Progress out of Poverty Index) and PWRs (Poverty Wealth Ranking). We then completed a mock field activity, in order to test the applicants understanding of conducting interviews in the field, explaining Village Enterprise, and introducing our program. We took our remaining 6 applicants into the area surrounding our office and noted how they performed in a ‘field’ environment. At the end of the day, again, we had to let another individual go.
Business Mentor, Gerald Kyalisiima participates in a mock field activity
Day 4 – Our final day! We started with 5 individuals, only to end the day with 4. We began our day by having each of the applicants present the ‘public speaking activity’ that we had informed them about the day before. Each applicant presented an introductory speech that would be similar to one they would give when introducing the Village Enterprise program to a new village. This was by far my favorite activity of the entire EBM Induction training – we were able to really see the impact that the 4-day training had had on each applicant. They had absorbed a huge amount of information in only 3 days, and not only really understood what Village Enterprise does, but also were able to digest it and re-explain it. All 5 applicants did a fantastic job. Before our day was over, we had a few more forms, processes, and procedures to review. That evening’s decision to let one last applicant go was by far the hardest.
Finally, we ended up with 4 Business Mentors: Doreen Kemigisa, Frank Murungi, Gerald Kyalisiima, and Geoffrey Kajuma. Doreen and Geoffrey will be working in Biiso Sub-county, and Frank and Gerald will be working in Kihungya Sub-county. We are extremely excited to have them on board, joining our dynamic Village Enterprise team!