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Contents 1.

Introduction 1.1 Overview of FemTalks Mentoring Circles™ Purpose and Methodology

2.

3.

4.

5.

Recruitment

3 4 4

2.1 United Kingdom

4

2.2 France

5

2.3 Italy

6

2.4 Hungary

6

2.5 Austria

7

Overview of Participants

9

3.1 Number of participants

9

3.2 Participants’ countries of origin

10

3.3 Reasons for joining programme

11

The Format and Process of the FemTalks Forum Circles™

12

4.1 United Kingdom (Inova Consultancy)

13

4.2 France (Elan Interculturel)

16

4.3 Italy (Materahub)

19

4.4. Hungary (Artemisszio)

22

4.5 Austria (InterACT)

26

Impact of the FemTalks Forum Circles™

28

5.1 United Kingdom

30

5.2 France

31

5.3 Italy

32

5.4 Hungary

33

5.5 Austria

34

5.6 Testimonials

34

6.

Conclusions and recommendations

36

7.

Annexes

38

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1. Introduction FemTalks is a project funded by Erasmus+, and piloted by partners in five different countries across Europe - United Kingdom, France, Italy, Hungary and Austria. As part of IO3 of the FemTalks project, the FemTalks Forum Circles programme was developed. The Mentoring Circles™ methodology was adapted by Inova Consultancy to provide training and support to the target group of migrant women. The programme was delivered by the following partners:

Inova Consultancy

United Kingdom

Elan Interculturel

France

Materahub

Italy

Artemisszió

Hungary

InterACT

Austria

Each partner country carried out two pilots, with a total of 10 pilots to be compared in this report. The partner organisations in each country conducted the FemTalks Circles™ pilots with up to 8 women per session; the target number was minimum 5 participants per pilot. In total, 62 participants engaged in the two pilots from all the partner countries. Pilot 1 took place from May to November 2020, and pilot 2 was conducted between February and June 2021. Further details will be provided in Section 4 “Format and Process of the FemTalks Forum Circles™”.

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1.1 Overview of FemTalks Mentoring Circles™ Purpose and Methodology Mentoring Circles™ is a methodology developed by Inova Consultancy, which aims to empower individuals to work through their goals individually, while being supported and held accountable by their peers. The general structure includes meeting in a small group (around 5-8 people) in the presence of a facilitator. The facilitator explains the process and each individual gets a turn to speak about their current goals, challenges and opportunities. The rest of the group then ask this individual to reflect on their goals and make sure they are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound). This allows the individual to personally adjust their goals, without explicitly being instructed on what to do. This approach also ensures that the individual is held accountable, as the group meets regularly to check on each other's progress. This methodology has been shown to be highly successful with various target groups, and has been specifically adapted for the FemTalk programme, to suit the target group of migrant women. To find out more about the Mentoring Circles™ methodology, please watch a short video here: https://youtu.be/LAbwRFRTxeU

2. Recruitment 2.1 United Kingdom Recruitment in the United Kingdom mostly took place through social media. For pilot 1 in June/July 2020, several online platforms were used to recruit participants as the training had to be held online due to existing Covid-19 restrictions. An event discovery platform ‘Skiddle’ was used, and it was also advertised on ‘Eventbrite’ where people could purchase their free tickets. There were advertisements on Inova’s website itself and there was a newsletter sent to previous participants. Facebook was also used to reach a wider audience. As a result, 18

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people registered for the course and 8 of them attended the sessions. For pilot 2 in February 2021, social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram were used as the main form of recruitment. Eventbrite and Skiddle were also used as it worked well for the first pilot. This resulted in 17 people signing up, of which 12 attended the sessions.

2.2 France In France, recruitment for pilot 1, which was set to take place in April 2020, had to be adjusted to meet the growing Covid-19 restrictions. Attendees of their multiplier event held in October were emailed and invited to join the FemTalks Circles workshops. Due to the exceptional circumstances regarding national restrictions, Elan Interculturel decided to directly contact previous participants who met the target group criteria - international women. This recruitment strategy resulted in 5 women taking part in the programme in May 2020. For the second pilot, potential participants were found via partner organisations who support migrant women, and they were contacted directly via WhatsApp. As a result, 5 women were able to attend the sessions in May 2021. English translation of email sent to recruit participants:

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2.3 Italy Recruitment by Materahub took place in January 2020 as the first pilot was due to take place in March 2020. Materahub organised recruitment activities by collaborating with organisations in the area which support migrant women, in order to find participants from their target group. However, the Covid-19 pandemic thwarted these plans and further dissemination and recruitment had to take place online during June and August 2020, on the Materahub website. As a result, 11 women registered their interest but due to further restriction and continuation of the pandemic, only 3 women were able to attend the first session in November. These participants subsequently invited their friends to the next session, meaning 6 people engaged with the sessions in total. Pilot 2 recruitment took place through direct contact with an institution supporting migrant women. This led to 13 women registering their interest in the second pilot, and 5 participants attending the sessions in May 2021. Website advertisement of the first pilot: https://www.materahub.com/opportunita-formazione-gratuita-migranti/

2.4 Hungary Recruitment in Hungary took place after a multiplier event organised in November 2019. A Facebook event was created in July 2020 and emails were sent to previous participants who met the eligibility criteria of being a migrant woman. Word-of-mouth was also used, as well as contacting organisations who support migrant women and encouraging them to share the event in their networks. In the end, 7 women registered and 5 ended up attending the sessions in person.

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Recruitment for pilot 2 relied on connecting to networks and organisations who support women living in Hungary who have moved from the neighbouring countries. However, after contacting these women, it became clear they do not view themselves as migrants and a new approach was needed. Artemisszio then contacted international women for an english coaching session using social platforms such as Facebook and newsletters. This resulted in the registration of 10 participants, of which 5 were able to attend the online training. Facebook event created to recruit participants:

2.5 Austria Recruitment for pilot 1 by InterACT in Austria was carried out by contacting existing participants from the FemTalks theatre workshops, which was also targeted at migrant women. Email, Facebook and Whatsapp were used to contact the participants about the Circles workshops. Following recruitment, 6 migrant women wanted to take part One of them got a job just before the Circle started and one got seriously ill. Therefore, 4 were engaged with the sessions in the end. For Austria it was important to follow the original idea to start with the Forum Theatre training followed by the Circles. For pilot 2, participants were recruited from the previous Forum Theatre workshop, which allowed InterACT to have an attendance of 7 women. Facebook advertisement of the course:

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3. Overview of Participants 3.1 Number of participants For the best implementation of the Circles™ methodology, each country’s target number of participants per session was 5-8, to ensure enough speaking time is allocated to each participant. During pilot 1, each organisation apart from InterACT reached this target, with 28 participants taking part in the first pilot across the partnerships. InterACT managed to recruit more participants for their pilot 2 delivery, so they also reached the overall target number. For the second pilot, 34 participants in total were able to attend. The chart below presents the proportion of participants engaged by each of the partners.

The infographics below show the number of participants from both pilots who attended the sessions (blue) in comparison to all who registered. Each partner engaged at least 10 participants:

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3.2 Participants’ countries of origin The participants of both pilots came from a variety of different European and Non-European countries. The origins of all participants are presented on the geographical map below:

Countries such as Egypt and Mexico saw the highest number of participants. For full list of countries please see the chart below:

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3.3 Reasons for joining programme The infographic below presents some of the main reasons that the participants decided to join the programme. Many of them mainly wanted to improve confidence, build a support network and increase their employability skills. It was also important for some of the participants to join a community of women who encourage each other to grow both personally and professionally. The Circles™ methodology is perfectly suited to achieve these goals.

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Most of the participants were entrepreneurs who took advantage of the sessions to create and develop new business ideas and strategies. Many of them were restaurant owners who had been impacted by Covid-19 and wanted to find new ways to regain control of their business. Being migrants, they were also keen to connect to like-minded individuals and women who have been through similar journeys in life. As well as this, they wanted to feel more empowered to be able to integrate into their current country despite cultural or language differences.

4. The Format and Process of the FemTalks Forum Circles™ Each of the partner organisations aimed to deliver at least 3 sessions as part of the project, to allow participants sufficient time to engage with the methodology by working through their goals. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, some of the organisations had to conduct their sessions online, while others were able to meet face-to-face while adhering to government restrictions in the respective country. Inova Consultancy and InterACT conducted 4 sessions per pilot, Elan Interculturel conducted 5 sessions in the first pilot and 3 in the second, Artemisszio conducted 3 sessions in the first pilot and 4 in the second pilot, while MateraHub had 3 session per pilot. Therefore, the total number of sessions for both pilots conducted by Inova Consultancy, Elan Interculturel and InterACT is 8, while MateraHub and Artemisszio is 6. Pilot 1 summary: Partner Inova

Elan

Materahub

Session number

Date of the session

Online or face to face

session 1

12/06/2020

online

session 2

19/06/2020

online

session 3

26/06/2020

online

session 4

03/07/2020

online

session 1a

06/05/2020

online

session 1b

13/05/2020

face to face

session 2

20/05/2020

face to face

session 3

27/05/2020

face to face

session 4

09/06/2020

face to face

session 1

06/11/2020

face to face

session 2

11/11/2020

face to face

session 3

13/11/2020

face to face

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Artemisszio

InterACT

session 1

11/08/2020

face to face

session 2

18/08/2020

face to face

session 3

25/08/2020

face to face

session 1

31/07/2020

face to face

session 2

10/08/2020

face to face

session 3

21/08/2020

face to face

session 4

23/09/2020

face to face

Date of the session

Online or face to face

session 1

22/02/2021

online

session 2

01/03/2021

online

session 3

08/03/2021

online

session 4

15/03/2021

online

session 1

20/05/2021

face to face

session 2

27/05/2021

face to face

session 3

10/06/2021

face to face

session 1

22/05/2021

face to face

session 2

26/05/2021

face to face

session 3

31/05/2021

face to face

session 1

01/03/2021

online

session 2

08/03/2021

online

session 3

16/03/2021

online

session 4

22/04/2021

online

session 1

11/05/2021

face to face

session 2

19/05/2021

face to face

session 3

27/05/2021

face to face

session 4

10/06/2021

face to face

Pilot 2 summary: Partner Inova

Elan

Materahub

Artemisszio

InterACT

Session number

4.1 United Kingdom (Inova Consultancy) Pilot 1 Pilot 1 in the United Kingdom was conducted by Marina Larios, an experienced Circles facilitator, via an online platform ‘GoToMeeting’. Below is a brief outline of each of the sessions:

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Session Number

1

2

3

4

Date

12.06.2020

19.06.2020

26.06.2020

03.07.2020

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

6

● ● ● ●

Icebreaker: Wolves Exercise Skills Assessment Individual Participant Stories Goal Setting

4

● ● ● ●

Icebreaker: Mindfulness exercise. Review of development tools. Goal setting- STOP, CONTINUE, START. Circle in Action

5

● ● ● ● ●

Icebreaker: what are you proud about? Mindfulness. Wheel of Life. Evaluation of Skills Circle in Action.

5

● ● ● ● ●

Icebreaker- Mindfulness and Gratitude. Recap of the last 3 Circles. Review Soft Skills Results. Circles in Action. Conclusions: new opportunities.

Each session was two hours long, held at 10:00am until 12:00pm, with an additional hour to network or receive extra support. Each session began with an icebreaker to get everyone comfortable; this was especially important in online sessions as some participants needed encouragement to speak on camera. On the first day, the facilitator described the Circles methodology to be used throughout the sessions and the participants rated their soft skills at the start of the session. The participants then introduced themselves and began setting action goals, with support from the facilitator. During the following session, each participant was given 10 minutes to talk about their progress and any challenges they have faced so far. The group provided feedback and encouraged the participant to adapt and improve their action points in order to achieve further progress. The third session was similar, with the addition of Mindfulness exercises and a further soft skills evaluation to compare each participant’s progress since the first session. Although only three sessions were initially planned, the participants expressed their interest in a further session to consolidate their progress, which Inova was able to provide. This session focused on discussing the results of the soft skills evaluation forms and each participant sharing their journey with the group. The participants were encouraged to keep in contact with each other to carry on their skills development and goal implementation further. After each session, the participants received a PowerPoint in order to keep a personal copy of the slides to facilitate their learning and help them to retain the given information. A WhatsApp group was also 14


created by Inova to allow participants to keep in touch in between the sessions, and also use this group chat after the end of the training if they wish to do so.

Pilot 2 All sessions of the second pilot also took place online, via ‘Zoom’. These sessions were similarly conducted by Marina Larios. See below for an overview of the sessions over four days: Session Number

1

2

3

Date

22/02/ 2021

01/03/ 2021

08/03/2021

Number of Participants

12

Tools Used/Comments ● ● ● ● ●

Icebreaker: Wolves story Introduction to the Circles Soft Skills Assessment Individual Participant Stories Goal Setting

● ● ● ● ● ●

Recap of first session Procrastination theory Evaluating the success of goals set since session 1 Wheel of life exercise Tree of change exercise Individual Participant Stories

● ● ● ● ●

Recap of the first and second session. RAS Explanation Goal Reflection Individual Participant Stories Soft Skills Evaluation

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7

15


4

15/03/2021

● ● ● ● ●

9

Recap of all sessions Networking rooms in pairs Individual Participant Stories Group Story sharing Evaluation

The structure and content of these sessions were mostly the same as the first pilot, with minor differences in activities. It began with some ice-breaker activities and IT checks to ensure everyone could hear and see the content, as the internet may be unreliable for some. After completing their soft skills evaluation, the participants were invited to share what they would like to work on with the rest of the group. In order to ensure each participant had an equal opportunity to talk, this part of the session was timed. They were then asked to set SMART goals, in order to help them break down large goals into attainable actions. During the following session, activities from the first session were recapped and participants had the opportunity to share the progress they have made since the previous week. New exercises were also introduced to help battle procrastination and provide further help with achieving set goals. The third session followed a similar structure of a blend of activities and the participants reflecting on their goals with the rest of the group. The group supported the person who was speaking and allowed them to improve their action points in order to move closer to achieving the goal that they set for themselves. There was an added session following the success of the Circles so far. The participants were put into breakout rooms where they could discuss their goals and their progress among themselves. This also taught them the skills to carry on supporting each other without the guidance of the facilitator, which many of them continued after the end of the programme. The final session ended with an evaluation of the Circles and the participants were provided with the resources used during the sessions. They could then keep in touch with each other via a WhatsApp group created by Inova.

4.2 France (Elan Interculturel) Pilot 1 Pilot 1 in France took place in May 2020, in Paris. The French facilitators were Cécile Stola and Anna Delenne. There were 5 sessions in total with the first session being split into two parts. The table below outlines the structure of the sessions: Session Number

Date

Number of Participants

1a

06/05/2020

5

1b

13/05/2020

5

Tools Used/Comments

Zoom Session – First try ● ●

Active listening exercises Competency Self-Assessment

16


Role playing

2

20/05/2020

4

Questioning rather than advice giving

3

27/05/2020

4

Questioning rather than advice giving

4

09/06/2020

4

Questioning rather than advice giving

Each of the sessions was carried out at lunch time during a weekday, lasting for three hours from 12pm to 3pm. Since the participants already knew each other, it was proposed that one of the participants would prepare a meal each week to celebrate their roots. This strengthened their bond and facilitated their communication with one another. At the beginning of each session, the framework of the methodology was outlined to ensure participants remain respectful to each other and careful not to impose their views when others are speaking about their goals. Then, goals for next week would be set to be reviewed at the beginning of the next session. When discussing, each woman was given around 10 minutes of speaking time followed by questions and prompts to help with her goal setting. The objectives and debriefing were then posted on the WhatsApp group, to help participants keep track of their actions and progress. After the last session, the participants wanted to have an extra session to talk about some logistics such as invoices and grant applications. Elan Interculturel was able to provide this extra session in order to meet the needs of the participants, which they greatly enjoyed.

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Pilot 2 Pilot 2 was similarly conducted by Cécile Stola and Anna Delenne, with the addition of Ambre Mesnier. The activities of the pilot 2 sessions are summarised below:

Session Number

Date

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

1

20/05/2021

4

● ●

Good listening activity Questioning

2

27/05/2021

3

● ● ●

Picture game (Dixit) SMART Goals Sheet of paper folded in 4

3

07/06/2021

5

● ●

Mind map Contacts tree

Pilot 2 consisted of three sessions, taking place in Paris - Place de Vanves and lasting three hours each. The sessions were conducted during lunchtime again, similarly to pilot 1. This allowed the participants to connect better after a shared activity of lunch. Unlike the first pilot, the time management for pilot 2 was different to allow more time for sharing, as the participants in pilot 1 felt that the exercises took up too much of the time. This time, the timing was more 18


free and the group ended up talking about one particular participant’s goals for a longer period of time, but her story was beneficial for all as they were able to learn from her and improve their own skills in the process. Some new activities were introduced to facilitate personal growth and ensure an improvement in the soft skills of each participant. Evaluation forms were completed at the beginning and end of the training, in order to see the progress made throughout the sessions. All of the resources used during the exercises were printed so each participant could have access after the end of the training.

4.3 Italy (Materahub) Pilot 1 Pilot 1 in Italy was carried out face-to-face in Matera. Alessandra Colombo was the facilitator of all sessions. An overview of the sessions is presented below:

Session Number

Date

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

1

6/11/2020

3

● ● ● ●

Icebreaker Exercises The rules The right questions … Interview

2

11/11/2020

6

● ● ●

Icebreaker Exercises Smart goals At my best

3

13/11/2020

6

● ●

The storytelling The thought distortions

The day was kept organised by referring to a timetable and guiding the women through projections of PowerPoint slides. The training space was adapted to align with governmental safety measures regarding Covid-19, so the participants had to sit apart and wear face coverings.

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The trainer explained the methodology during the first session, followed by an ice breaker activity to get everyone comfortable and start sharing their stories. The women were introduced to the ‘questions’ methodology to allow them to question each other in a way that promotes self-learning and growth without imposing a particular view. Session evaluations were completed at the end of each session and the group then set goals for future sessions. During the following sessions, participants engaged in further activities facilitated by the trainer and were able to share their stories with the group and receive feedback in the form of self-reflective ‘questions’ once again. There was a mix of practical work and open discussions. Participants were then able to provide feedback in the form of evaluation forms.

Pilot 2 Pilot 2 activities were mostly the same as those outlined for pilot 1, with the exception of some participants gathering for a tea during the final session and working out plans to keep in touch and continue supporting one another after the end of the project. The summary of the sessions is presented below:

Session Number

Date

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

1

22/05/2021

5

● ● ● ●

Icebreaker Exercises The rules The right questions The storytelling

2

26/05/2021

5

● ● ●

Icebreaker Exercises Smart goals At my best

3

31/05/2021

5

● ● ●

The storytelling Networking tree The thought distortions

Materahub decided to keep most of the activities the same for pilot 2 but introducing some new ones such as ‘Networking tree’ and ‘Storytelling’. The women were encouraged to share their goals and were supported by the rest of the group in turning these into SMART goals and practical actions.

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The first session began with ice breaker activities and completing pre-training evaluation forms, followed by an explanation of the Circles methodology to ensure everyone was aware of the way the sessions will run. The women could then share their stories with the rest of the group and begin working on their goals. The following sessions had a similar structure where each participant could share their progress and get support with any challenges they are facing. After the end of the final session, everyone completed an evaluation form to compare how their soft skills changed since the beginning of the first session. The group was also keen to stay in touch after the end of the training, as they wanted to keep supporting one another in achieving their goals.

Photos from some of the sessions:

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4.4. Hungary (Artemisszio) Pilot 1 Pilot 1 took place in August 2020, in the office of Artemisszio in Budapest. The Hungarian facilitators were Anna Végh and Nóra Balkányi, both of whom have some experience in coaching. There were three sessions conducted in Hungary, find an overview of the sessions below: Session Number

1

Date

11/08/2020

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

5

• • • • • • • • •

Expectations on post-its Group frames/rules Short video screening about the method My life in Budapest:mindmap to support finding topics Picking the right questions CIRCLE SMART goal template Optional homework: interview How are you round

• • • • • •

Playback theatre game - how are you statues Checking the homeworks and goals Flower of Flow Dixit cards CIRCLE How are you round - 1 sentence

Barometer in the room (scale of 1-10 how energetic are you, etc.)

2

18/08/2020

3

3

25/08/2020

2

22


• • • •

Social galaxy - mapping the relationships one has closeness, locals vs from the country of origin + Berry model about adaptation How did you proceed with your goals? Action planning Verbal evaluation of the session Written evaluation

After presenting the project and aims of the programme, the participants focused on group building exercises. The participants were then more comfortable and confident presenting their goals to the group and the rest of the group was able to ask questions and encourage growth. There was also opportunity for physical exercise/stretching as the session lasted for a while and some participants got tired of sitting down. The time management of the session was carefully monitored by the facilitators to ensure each activity was covered and the session could finish on time. After each session, there was a chance for a verbal as well as written evaluation, which helped participants to think about their shared experience and listen to what others thought of the session. Following the session, an email was sent where participants could input and monitor each other’s goals for that week.

An image from one of the sessions:

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Pilot 2 Pilot 2 in Hungary was made more challenging by the need to deliver it online, following the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, the decision was made to include an extra session for pilot 2, where the first session could be dedicated to getting to know each other as this is a bigger challenge in an online setting. As a result, the content of these sessions was slightly different, as seen below: Session Number

Date

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

● ● ● ●

Technical setup, user guidelines for the group work (camera on, mute, chat functions) Welcome, introduction of Artemisszió, FemTalks project, the platform, trainers Key ring introduction in a circle Introduction to the NLP method (video sent beforehand), structure of the process and the sessions EXPECTATIONS AND FEARS (flinga) SEARCH FOR TOPICS - Which chapter are you in at the book of your life Wheel of life Smart goal template How are you: one word in the chat Homework: fill the smart goal template

● ● ● ● ● ●

Speed date in pairs - group cohesion Practicing NLP questioning Circles structure presentation Circles How are you round - 1 sentence Homework: flower of flow

● ● ● 1

2

1/03/2021

8/03/2021

5

5

● ●

24


3

16/08/2021

4

4

22/04/2021

4

● ● ● ● ●

Checking in Homework - how was it? Circles Verbal evaluation of the session Homework: hero story for the platform

● ● ● ● ● ● ●

Checking in Homework check-in Circles Action planning for the future Written evaluation Verbal evaluation Closure

The trainers had to adapt to the online nature of the sessions with the help of a manual developed by Inova Consultancy. The duration of activities had to be adjusted as participants found it harder to concentrate online and the time for talking was decreased as participants were often hesitant to speak for longer periods of time. However, the online nature of these sessions allowed remote participants to join when they would have otherwise been unable to due to the distance. The first session focused on establishing connections with each other and figuring out how to use the technology. Within a short time, the participants began sharing personal stories and seemed to form genuine connections quickly. In terms of using the ‘questioning’ technique, the second pilot was less strict about who can ask questions and when, to allow a more fluid and open discussion. At the end of each session, optional tasks were given to aid preparation for the next session, if the participants had time. Whenever the participants seemed unsure of the methodology, the facilitator would explain how to turn their goals into SMART goals to aid their action-setting. During Circle sharing, the facilitator was responsible for managing the time. At the end of the sessions, each participant completed an evaluation form and presented verbal feedback.

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Screenshot of the second pilot session:

4.5 Austria (InterACT) Pilot 1 The first pilot took place in person, facilitated by Marianne Köberl-Wrentschur and Martin Vieregg. See the outline below: Session Number

1

Date

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

31/07/2020

4

● ● ●

Introduction and Admin Icebreaker, questioning Evaluation and admin

2

10/08/2020

3

● ●

Reviewing smart goals, discussion Evaluation, and admin issues

3

21/08/2020

2

● ●

Reviewing smart goals process, discussion Evaluation and Admin

26


4

23/09/2020

4

● ● ● ● ●

Steps forward, smart goal Storytelling exercise for all Presentation and reflection Introduction to learning platform Evaluation and outlook

The sessions were three hours long, from 10am until 1pm. The training space was adapted to meet government restrictions due to Covid-19. The sessions focused on each person telling their story, setting their goals and receiving feedback in the form of questions from the rest of the group, to encourage independent growth. To keep in touch, a WhatsApp group was created where participants could meet up in their own time and maintain the connections they have built. Some pictures from the sessions are below:

Pilot 2 The second pilot in Austria similarly took place in person, with the same facilitators - Marianne KöberlWrentschur and Martin Vieregg. The activities in the second pilot were mostly kept the same as the first. See contents of the sessions below:

Session Number

Date

Number of Participants

Tools Used/Comments

27


1

11/05/2021

7

● ● ●

Introduction and Admin Icebreaker Evaluation and admin

2

19/05/2020

5

● ● ● ●

Network game Reviewing smart goals Discussion on mind maps Evaluation, and admin issues

3

27/05/2021

5

● ●

Reviewing smart goals process, discussion Evaluation and Admin

4

10/06/2021

4

● ● ● ● ●

Steps forward, smart goal Storytelling exercise for two Presentation and reflection Quiz for fun Evaluation and outlook

The sessions included a blend of exercises and time for discussion. Each participant got 15 minutes to discuss their goals and their challenges, while the rest of the group was asked to listen and support them in developing practical action points. This group discussion was conducted during each of the sessions. It was also supplemented by some activities conducted by the facilitators, such as the networking game, to encourage better communication between the participants and improve their soft skills. The impact of these activities was assessed with evaluation forms, which were completed at the beginning and end of the training. These included a range of soft skills and allowed to compare the progress the participants made throughout training. After the last session, some of the participants wanted to stay in touch and keep discussing their progress with each other. WhatsApp groups were a good way to achieve this and keep the participants’ motivation even after the end of training.

5. Impact of the FemTalks Forum Circles™ As part of the Circles™ methodology, all participants completed a soft skills evaluation form at the beginning of the first session and at the end of the last session. The criteria for these were the same for all partner organisations (1=poor, 5=excellent), which allowed for smooth comparison. 28


Partners in the United Kingdom and France measured the difference between the average in ratings given at the start and end of the training, allowing the results to be presented as a line graph. Whereas partners in Italy, Hungary and Austria measured the number of participants who have improved on their soft skills rating over the course of the training, so the results are presented as a column chart instead.

A list of the skills assessed are presented below: Skill/Knowledge Creativity Identify opportunities Critical thinking Self-confidence Self-knowledge Decision making Perseverance Coping with uncertainty Communication Managing stress Listening skills Curiosity Managing cultural differences Networking Motivation Recognising own skills

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5.1 United Kingdom Pilot 1

This graph shows a consistent improvement in all soft skills measured from the beginning of the first session to the end of the last session. The average score at first was around 3 or below, which improved to around 4 by the end of the last session. Significant improvement can especially be seen in the listening skills, which must have been developed during the workshops as participants were encouraged to listen to one another intently.

Pilot 2

A clear trend is visible between the start and end of the programme, where all participants improved their soft skills. Prior to the programme, they rated their skills around 2 or 3, but by the end, they were confidently rating most of their skills as 3.

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5.2 France Pilot 1

From the start to the end of the programme, there is a visible improvement across all skill areas for all participants. Most participants began rating their skills around 3 and by the end of the sessions, they were rating them as 4 or 5, which is a significant improvement.

Pilot 2 Similarly to the first pilot, most participants improved on all areas of their soft skills. The difference between pre training and post training was around 1 point for most of the skills, although some have remained the same.

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5.3 Italy Pilot 1

Out of 6 participants, at least 4 have improved on all of their soft skills. Networking skills showed the least improvement, although still very high. However, skills such as self-confidence and selfreflection were improved by all participants through the Circles activities.

Pilot 2 In the second pilot, all of the participants except one improved every one of the presented soft skills. This was a highly successful outcome as each participant felt more confident in their skill levels after completing the training

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5.4 Hungary Pilot 1 The first pilot in Hungary saw an improvement in the soft skills of many participants. Certain skills such as selfreflection and self-confidence were improved 100by all 5 participants, similar to the first%pilot in Italy. Whereas the skill of being prepared to deal with conflict and stress was only improved by 2 out of the 5 participants. Some of the participants justified their lower rating by saying that there were no specific activities which focused on stress management. For all other skills, at least 3 of the 5 participants showed improvement.

Pilot 2 The results of the second pilot show making new contacts, selfreflection and skill recognition skills to be the highest. In contrast, only 1 out of 4 participants improved in having a better perception of themselves as a migrant, which is different to the first pilot. Other than this, at least half of the participants improved on all other skill areas.

100 %

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5.5 Austria Pilot 1 Pilot 1 in Austria had 4 participants, and at least half of them have improved in all skill areas. The highest improvement was in goal setting, selfconfidence and skill recognition. Whereas the lowest was in having a better perception of oneself as a migrant. Overall, most participants improved all other skill areas.

Pilot 2 Soft skills in pilot 2 were also improved by most of the participants. Out of the 7 participants, 4 completed the evaluation form. 2 participants who attended 3 sessions could not come to 100 the last session due to family % commitments, therefore they did complete a final evaluation form. At least 2 participants improved on all areas of their soft skills. Unlike the first pilot, there was less improvement on self-confidence but significant improvement on most other skills.

5.6 Testimonials After completing the soft skills evaluation forms, participants were asked to give comments relating to the training. Some of the results are presented below: 34


Many participants were satisfied with the workshops and did not want any changes, while others suggested having more sessions, including a review session after a few months and learning from more experienced migrant women. The participants were then asked if they would recommend this training, to which 100% of them said ‘yes’. They then left any further comments relating to the training:

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6. Conclusions and recommendations Overall, the FemTalks Circles™ output was a success in each of the partner countries that piloted the activity. The workshops engaged migrant women from all over the world and allowed them to express themselves in a safe and comfortable environment. The need to adapt some of the workshops to be delivered online due to Covid-19 was challenging in some countries, but the end result proved to be a success as it was possible to engage participants nationwide. Both pilots in France, Italy and Austria managed to be conducted face-to-face, whereas those in the United Kingdom and Hungary had to be online for one or both pilots. To account for the change to remote delivery, Artemisszio in Hungary added an extra session at the beginning to build a better relationship with the participants prior to training. Inova Consultancy, InterACT and Elan Interculturel also added extra sessions at the end because the participants were keen to consolidate their learning with an additional session. In Austria it was very useful that the FemTalks Forum Circles took place after the Forum Theatre Training. The theatre workshop established deep trust in the group. Having the shared experience of the Forum Theatre process had a very positive impact on the collaboration and support in the Circles. The change in dates due to Covid-19 also made recruitment challenging in some countries, but the overall target of 10 participants over two pilots was met by all of the partners. Having a target of 10 participants per pilot meant that the overall target number of participants was 50, for the five partners. The actual total number of engaged participants by all partners from both pilots was 62, with around 5 participants per each individual session. Having around 5 participants per session was effective because it allowed for a sustained conversation while leaving enough time for everyone to talk through their goals. The delivery of the pilots in the partner countries followed a similar structure, with minor adjustments to meet the national Covid-19 restrictions and allow for the best possible delivery in any exceptional circumstances. Each session included some group activities as well as allowing participants time to share their goals and action plans and receive feedback.

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Each session had evaluation forms and an overall soft skills development evaluation. The results from these indicated a significant improvement in the soft skills gained by participants over the training programme. The most improvement was seen in self-confidence and self-regulation skills, due to the impact of the Circles™ methodology, which aims to empower individuals to set their own goals and hold themselves accountable. In terms of recommendations, some participants provided feedback about what could be improved in the future, as well as some suggestions by the facilitators. One of the main areas of concern for participants was the amount of time allocated to the sessions. Most of them expressed their desire to have longer sessions, which would allow them to go more in-depth about each other’s goals. Some have also suggested having follow-up sessions after the end of the training, to stay in touch with one another and consolidate what they have learned over the course of the training. This is supported by comments from Inova’s facilitator, as Inova added an extra session after requests from participants. This extra session was extremely beneficial and could be implemented in future training. Another beneficial way to consolidate learning and keep up the support offered through the Circles, is by creating a group chat with all of the participants, and the facilitator. The partners who made use of group chats during their training reported good participation and concluded that group chats are a good way for participants to stay in touch after the end of training. A further recommendation by Elan Interculturel included having a shared activity at the beginning of each session. The pilots in France included having a cultural dish cooked by one of the participants before beginning the session, which allowed time to bond and share experiences. This is dependent on the setting, as it may require different shared activities remotely via Zoom. This suggestion was also echoed by some of the participants, who suggested having more group building activities towards the beginning of the training. In terms of the impact of online and face-to-face sessions, there are drawbacks and benefits to both approaches. It was at times challenging to build genuine connections online, but the remote nature of the sessions allowed for more participants to join from the partner countries nationwide. Therefore, having a blended approach may be beneficial, where some participants could join some of the sessions online if they are unable to join in person.

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The training sessions in each country were overall successful as the participants greatly enjoyed their time and improved their soft skills, as well as supporting each other to make progress on their goals.

7. Annexes ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

Pilot report 1 – UK Pilot report 2 – UK Pilot report 1 – Austria Pilot report 2 – Austria Pilot report 1 – France Pilot report 2 – France Pilot report 1 – Hungary Pilot report 2 – Hungary Pilot report 1 – Italy Pilot report 2 – Italy

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