#story2020How to get the most out of the online format

Sabina, a participant in the School of Success project, talks about what the project was like this year

I consider myself quite active, I have a constant feeling that I am doing too little, so I am constantly looking for opportunities. I read a lot, communicate with people, which helped me find the project "School of Success". Among hobbies: musical and theatrical art, recitation of poems. Before the project, I was selected for two camps from the Peace Corps, but due to various circumstances I could not get to them, so the "School of Success" was a good opportunity for me to realize.

I live in Kupyansk-Vuzlovo, Kharkiv region. It is a small town and very few teenagers live here. Among my peers here, I have only one friend. He participated in another project from the Klitschko Foundation  "Zero Waste School". During it, he heard about other projects and was very inspired to talk about the "School of Success".

I also have some interesting stories related to project selection. I like to write different prose texts  it helped me in writing the questionnaire, although at first I was a little scared of this huge questionnaire with a bunch of windows. The video was a bit more complicated, because I didn't have such an experience, and I had problems with self-presentation. I thought for a long time how to do it creatively, but in the end I just talked about myself, walking in the park and showing my Red Cross certificate and the certificate of a member of the Youth Council of my city, where I am now a leader. The most important interview tips (this was the next stage of the selection): feel comfortable and honest, do not be afraid to talk about your shortcomings, because this is the way to overcome them.

I liked that before the project we had homework, quite complex, which already gave some understanding of the project. Teamwork was one of my favorite parts. It gave a better understanding of the other participants. In a team, people reveal themselves better, and then you wonder how you could not notice certain cool traits in another person. A team is something that brings people together, a common goal.

Communicating with mentor Maria is a whole new kind of relationship, I probably haven't felt this way before. You don't know her as well as your friends, but you can't tell your friends what you're saying to your mentor. A mentor is several people in one: a friend, a teacher, a mentor and more, and more, and more. I think in a few years, when I am sure that I have a certain amount of knowledge that I can share with who I once was, some experience, leadership skills, I would be able and willing to become a mentor.

I have grand plans for a local project. The biggest success, in my opinion, is to understand what my peers need. My goal: to tell them about opportunities for young people: projects, grants, foundations, things that can change them, guide them on the right path. I have an idea  to create a platform for philosophical debates. This will help the participants of my project to better open up and understand themselves.

The community is incredible, I'm glad to be a part of it. I understand that I am free to write to our chat for advice and support. Once I did so, getting a bunch of tips and ideas, one of which I used for myself. I am currently ready to implement a very large-scale project with my Youth Council, and we are working on a grant from UNICEF.

I understand that the online format has taken away a lot of opportunities from us, for example, we could not hug our mentors when we wanted to. It was really sad to realize that one part of the project was over, but it means that the project really became a very important part of my summer, and perhaps a window to a successful future.

During these 10 days I grew up, became more self-confident, more motivated from meeting so many active people who are ready to change something. I also became less shy about constant communication, no longer afraid to express my opinion. I would advise the next participants of the "School of Success" not to be afraid, because anything is possible!