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					       Guidelife Project

  Identification of barriers

     Carpathian Foundation Romania
- Fund for Development of the Carpathian Euroregion -

               Fieldwork report written by
            Sergiu Baltatescu, PhD.
               University of Oradea

                    October 29th 2007, Danemark         1
Target Groups

   A. young unemployed individuals
   B. ethnic minorities individuals

                   October 29th 2007, Danemark   2

   Lack of visibility and representation of the
    guidance and counseling sector
   Lack of counselors
   Lack of organizations specialized in counseling

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                           Lack of
                      organizations and

                                                     Lack of knowledge
Lack of specialists                                     by the target

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   Reluctance of the interviewed individuals from both
    target groups
   Reluctance of the guiding & counseling organizations
   Counselors have no deep knowledge on the obstacles,
    when working with the specified target groups
         They merged the “difficulties” and “obstacles”


                      October 29th 2007, Danemark          5

   Fieldwork June-October 2007, Oradea
   18 interviews:
      6 with persons from the counseling sector

      9 with Target Group 1 (Youth unemployed)

      6 with Target group 2 (Ethnic Minorities)

   Interactive focus group

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Interviews with the guidance counselors
and educators

    duration: 20 - 40 minutes each
    experts active in both, public and private

                    October 29th 2007, Danemark   7
Public sector - AJOFM (County Agency for
Labor force Employment)

    work very often with both of the disadvantaged
     target groups
    often serve as mediators, guiding the applicants
     towards the available jobs
    have limited options because of the dysfunctions
     of the current labourforce allocation system

                     October 29th 2007, Danemark        8
    Public sector - AJOFM (County Agency
    for Labor force Employment)
   Reactions:
      the “clients” are only interested in asking for vocational courses free of

       charge, provided by AJOFM  refusing real guidance
      the “clients” are not interested to find a suitable job

      the employers send misleading reports on their available jobs (the jobs

       are already taken)
      the councilors have no training in counseling

      they have idiosyncratic ideas about counseling

      counseling is done: “…without specialists, proper locations, materials…

       I must recognize we’re doing the counseling activity “by ear” “

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Counselors from the private sector

   Private owned companies in consultancy and training in
    human resources, business development and head hunting
   NGO’s - counseling programs financed by EU programs
   Most of them are not especially trained in counseling area
   They insist on owning a scientific approach because they
    use licensed competences’ tests & tools

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A. Target Group 1 - young unemployed

   Young individuals
       recent high school graduates
       not married
       never worked before
       have no qualification
       look for a job or for a vocational training course
        provided free of charge by AJOFM agency

                        October 29th 2007, Danemark          11
A. Target Group 1 - young unemployed

   People at the end of their young age
       married with children
       became unemployed 3-9 months before
       are looking for a new job or a chance to change their
       follow a vocational training course provided free of
        charge by the AJOFM agency

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B. Target Group 2 - ethnic minorities

       Hungarian minority individuals (3) from Oradea
         very young
         at the beginning of their career and
         willing to accept irregular jobs
         majority are educated and have high educational

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B. Target Group 2 - ethnic minorities

   Roma - gipsy individuals (3)
       24-28 years old
       are married (one with children)
       from a village near Oradea
       have very low or no formal education
       never had a formal job
       live mainly from social help and work in agriculture

                       October 29th 2007, Danemark             14
    Interactive focus group
        Participants from counseling sector
        Participants from target groups – 4 undergraduate
         students, looking for a job
           they never worked before
           have no qualification
           looking for a job
           most of them (3) where from Hungarian minority group
           they had temporary jobs until now
        3 young people that graduate university for 1+3
           they could only found underpaid jobs
           are still unemployed
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Identification of barriers & obstacles

   Lack of information about the whole process of
    counseling, that causes:
       skepticism towards counseling area
       fear that the personal information they give to private
        firms in the process of guidance would be used against
       the roots of this lack of information are attributed by
        some of the respondents to the educational system

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Possible causes:

   1. educational system does not train people in order to
    deal with the process of finding a job
       lack of knowledge about interviews, CV etc
       young unemployed have higher aspirations than their training
        would allowed
   2. local employment - employers are not really interested
    in “multiple skills” of the candidates (i.e.: team work, time
    management and so on)
   3. all these problems are aggravated by the lack of
    visibility and promotion of the counseling companies

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Target group 1: young unemployed

    Some of the respondents answer that there is a
     lack of information about the whole process
     of counseling, that includes:
       the available jobs

       their rights to access the job market

                   October 29th 2007, Danemark        18
Target group 2: ethnic minority individuals

   The Hungarians – language problems
   The Rroma – a more difficult situation
       lack of minimum school background
       lack of jobs
       lack of training
       prejudice and discrimination
       spatial isolation
       lack of funds to cover minimal expenses of the counseling process
       many of them are very often relying on their leaders

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Actions to be implemented in order to
overcome the barriers
    At the level of the State agencies
        waiting for the policy to be changed at the central level (top-
         down approach)

    At the level of private counseling companies:
        increase of the knowledge about the counseling activities
        promotional actions in schools or faculties
        promotional and common projects with State agencies
        free counseling programs for the specific target groups
        no specific actions were mentioned for the Rroma community

                          October 29th 2007, Danemark                      20
Participation and opinions about training
programs available for guidance and
counseling professionals
    none of the respondents mentioned any training
    training could help them
    topics: “counseling”, “steps in counseling”,
     psychology of interpersonal communication and
     marketing were approached

                   October 29th 2007, Danemark        21
Counseling offer - satisfaction level and
needs assessment
    TG received little or less counseling
    TG have no idea of what this means
    Generally, a positive attitude - the guidance is
     useful - but we can’t tell in what respects
    The most important benefit – free of charge
     vocational training courses

                        October 29th 2007, Danemark     22
Do you think the guidance and counselor
professionals understand your situation?

     All the respondents were satisfied
     Alternative explanation:
        the counselor at the local labor force agency is also

         a mediator and should apply the law
        understanding is when their arguments have been

         accepted by the counselor (they can benefit from
         the unemployment benefits)

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Participation in and opinions about the
training for the counseling sector

     good opinion on – recognized utility of the
      qualifications provided

                   October 29th 2007, Danemark      24
Barriers experienced - Target Group 1
   1. lack of qualifications – schools
   2. lack of the experience
   3. local job market:
       jobs on black or grey market
       seasonal jobs
       not specified or extra working time
       rights of the workers often not respected
       commuting problems
   4. finding a job is conditioned by the relations you have
    on the job market (nepotism, bribery)
   5. they have to accept bad and insecure jobs - not the
    lack of a job

                          October 29th 2007, Danemark           25
Barriers experienced - Target Group 2

   Hungarian ethnic group
       The linguistic barrier
       Self-selection of a candidate

   Roma
       The lack of education
       The spatial isolation
       The discrimination on the job market was not

                       October 29th 2007, Danemark     26
Solution to overcome the barriers

   Improve the training
   Actively looking for other opportunities on the job
   TG2 Rroma have rather a passive attitude
    continuing to rely on the help of the State
   They are looking for private alternatives - daily
    and seasonal jobs

                    October 29th 2007, Danemark      27
    Social exclusion-inclusion, active
    citizenship, personal development
   Because their reference groups (for example, people in their
    neighborhood) have similar work status, none of the unemployed see
    himself as being really excluded
   The economical aspect of the exclusion: without a stable job, some of
    unemployed persons begin to have problems with cash - because they are
    rather recently without work - For Rroma community members, the low
    income is the most important reason for exclusion from the society
   The most urgent problem is the lack of health insurances
   The psychological benefits of a job, such as security and feeling of
    affiliation, is missing

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What would you like to receive from the

    Requested characteristics of a counseling
       to be free of charge

       to be practical

       to be adapted to each client

                    October 29th 2007, Danemark   29