A Year Journey with the Social Innovation Mentors

 The Social Innovation Mentoring program (SIM) is a 12 month program from CCL that fosters leadership, entrepreneurship and service through a mentoring approach. To achieve the amplification of the 26 female voices we took under or wings during this project as well leveraged CCL methods like the Life Tree, Social Identity Map and DAC model. The 26 female are all university student at the Ethiopian Institute of Architecture Building and Construction College in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The campus is mainly known as a male dominated school in the city.

CCL believes that developing young leaders should be a process achieved through time. Therefore SIM was designed to develop the students as leaders and help unlock their individual potential through a variety of leadership train the trainer session. In the beginning all participants went the Leadership Essentials Program which helped them to see that leadership starts from leading themselves and then lead others using their personal way. According to the participants the Social Identity Map has been a great tool to identify what their Given, Chosen and Core identities are and how they can apply that in a real life. Flavoring the leadership trainings with different Team in a Box activities such as “Irrigation Ditch” opened many of the participants’ eyes to see what Direction Alignment and Commitment is all about and how that applied in their team work. InImage general the Leadership Essentials Training helped them to discover their various leadership potentials and created multiple opportunities to apply those leadership skills throughout the whole duration of the project.

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At the Fair Day

February 23, 2013: Social Innovation Mentors Fair Day at the EiABC campus.

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Continuing on investing back on our communities…


This past Saturday, our Lunch and Learn took place outside of our usual spot, iceaddis. We went to the Children’s Heaven Orphanage center around Aeyer Tena in Addis. Every SIM member had a chance to talk about what Social Innovation Mentoring is all about and the impact that brought in everyone’s life so far; and that extended with a fun discussion by sharing our stories as a Mentor. The next activity was to draw a Life Tree where the kids learned to identify their goals, core values, support, challenges and future plans in life. Our visit was ended up by giving a little piece of training on how to make a fun thread-bracelet . . .  . . we will be continuing visiting local NGOs to pass down our trainings and experiences we have had in our Social Innovation Mentoring program.

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Going back to our High Schools

Social Innovation Mentoring program prioritizes investing on young high school women students with the knowledge, trainings and experiences the Mentors have had so far. The goal is to reach 800 female students through the 26 Social Innovation Mentors.

How does this work?

The mentors will go back to their former high schools to form a brand new Girl’s Clubs or strengthen the existing ones. Each mentor will have a mentee who will lead a Girl Club at her school to pass down what she has gained through the program. Mentors will spend at least an hour per week with their mentees to enhance their leadership skills through mentoring while they are developing friendship through different topics.

Result: Reaching 800 girls—generate a group of young girls who can lead others with effective leadership skills and design ideas to solve social problems to benefit the social sector.

Appreciation Event!

The Social Innovation Mentoring program (SIM) aimed to reach 800 high school students in the year of 2012 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. But our Mentors managed to reach out to so much more women in different age groups in the past 7 months due to their own personal motivation for participating in the program set up by the Center for Creative Leadership ( www.ccl.org ). The SIM girls have been volunteering in several Peace Corps Summer Camps and traveled to 5 different regions within Ethiopia to be big sisters, translators, activity facilitators and mentors for high school students – who never been to the capital of Ethiopia, Addis Abeba.

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The same SIM Mentors got the privilege to volunteer for Ethiopian Senior Citizens, a local NGO in Addis Ababa (http://www.ethiopianseniorcitizens.org/), where they designed a new specially need-based public shower and restrooms for elders, age 60 and above. It will be a sustainable income generator for elder women in the sub-city of Lideta, Addis Abeba, who do not have the fund to pay for a professional one as soon as it’s build. Through this design they were able to step up for the elders in their society and provide a solution for those elders who are poor and disabled. To have a place to get affordable public service to clean themselves is not common in Ethiopia.
To cherish their personal success as well as sharing their stories with the public we organized an SIM Appreciation Event, which was held at iceAddis, on EiABC campus of the Addis Ababa University on September 29th 2012. The investment that has been made through CCL itself, the Leading Beyond Boundaries Initiative (www.leadbeyond.org ) and the Marrow Fund towards the Social Innovation Mentors got praised as well for all the difference it caused for the 26 participating girls studying on that campus. Beyond that we wanted to show family members and friends what we’ve been done in the past months and thank everybody – especially our weekly guest speakers – who contributed time, experience, connections and ideas to our program. We have had a wonderful time with our invitees on that sunny Saturday in Addis and we hope to continue our work with our family & friends, guests & contacts from local and international NGOs as well as from various other organizations who have been supporting our Mentors.  Continue reading