An important component of YouthBuild Cluj is the professional qualification that the students receive during the program. The young people learn to be hairdressers, make manicure and pedicure, or drive transport cars (lorries).
In the hairdressing and manicure-pedicure courses, it is very important for the young students to practice what they get to learn theoretically. That is where our collaboration with the Magic People association and the Day Center for the Elderly, no. 1, started – from our wish to find models that would be patient with our students’ learning process, as well as enjoy the experience. Starting March 27th, the members of the center started coming at the hairdressing classes, by themselves or in small groups. On one side, driven by the curiosity to see the classes, but mostly to get a haircut from our students.
“It’s necessary that we understand that each of us has to get involved in the community that we are a part of, because that is how we build a better future for all of us. It is exactly what we try to do within the Magic People association’s projects. The honorary grandparents came to the aid of young people in this instance as well. I believe it is a very important that the grandparents accepted this invitation, for the students have the opportunity to exercise and simulate with the grandparents what, for them, will become an average day’s work, as well as practice in how to relate with their clients”, says Dan Ciulea, vicepresident of Magic People association.
Our invitation also reached Remus Hui, who participated for the first time as a model for a hairdressing course. He heard of the action from the Day Center’s coordinator, Mihaela Marcovici. When he arrived, he was received by Ferdinand Moldovan, one of the YouthBuild program’s participants. In the buzz of the hairdressing’s classroom, we followed Ferdi as he did Mr Hui’s haircut. Ferdi was nice and explained to us what he was doing.
“The sir asked me to clip his hair with the no 3 bladecover, on the sides and the top, and make smooth transitions. I’m doing the contour now. Then I’m cleaning him up and he is done.” As Ferdi was going through his work, Mr Hui was smiling. Having his attention, we asked him how he felt and how he’d talk of his experience with his friends.
“I am very pleased. The boy was smooth and he paid attention to my requests. I’ll tell my friends that they are doing a good job, so they come too”, says Mr Hui.
„The members of the Day Center for the Elderly no. 1 get involved with much enthusiasm in all the activities we promote. We have an artistic assembly named The Seniors Armony, through which we wanted to promote traditional games and songs, a theater group, a painting workshop, a literary group. We organize trips, contests, festive meals. The Magic People association believed in the value of the elderly and supported us in making many wonderful activities. We are happy each time we can be close to young people and involved in the community,” says Mihaela Marcovici, the Day Center’s coordinator.
„For the YouthBuild participants, it is important that they gain the experience of working with clients in the field they are qualifying themselves in. Many times, they bring their friends or acquaintances , with whom they can be more informal. The experience of working with the center’s members will prepare them to interact more easily with their clients, once they find a job”, adds Alexandre Combes, YouthBuild Cluj project manager.
At the end of the day, we couldn’t compare the contentment of the clients for a service well done with the contentment of the students, who had a productive day. But we hope to have many more days like this, where there is joy and contentment for everyone.
Photo: Roland Váczi