Meet Adiba Ali: Facilitator


Ever since she initially began studying psychology as a major, Adiba Ali always wanted an outlet that would allow her to use the principles she had learned and actually put them into practice. ETASHA provided the medium for her to apply her knowledge in a constructive manner. Therefore, she joined the organization as a facilitator nine months ago. “ETASHA gave me an opportunity to interact and counsel children. The teaching methodology is a more direct, participatory methodology that is conducive to a more hands-on approach,” she explained. “That’s why I chose ETASHA.” In the time since then, Adiba has become yet another important cog in the machinations of the organization. When she began, she taught at an ITI extension of ETASHA; today, she teaches regularly at the Madanpur Khadar and Tigri centers. In addition, she also conducts research for the organization. For example, she is currently writing a paper on the various career choices and preferences of trainees (both past and present) in ETASHA.

Not only has she affected beneficial change around her, but like so many other faculty members, Adiba has also observed changes in herself due to her exposure with trainees. For example, whereas she always tended to be focused more on psychology and less on communication, Adiba today immensely enjoys teaching interpersonal classes. “It’s my favorite part,” she said. “I like teaching all classes, but I feel very comfortable with the students and I get to know them better while teaching interpersonal classes.” Indeed, because each batch of trainees only takes a three month course, facilitators must establish a familiar and comfortable atmosphere for students right away. Adiba believes that this relatively ephemeral length of classes is the biggest challenge that the students face. “We are able to change every student,” she pointed out. “But since each batch only lasts three months, the degree to which the change occurs depends entirely on the trainees themselves and how much they practice the material covered on their own. Their biggest obstacle is their lack of motivation at times.”

Just as she has acted as a catalyst when it comes to enacting change in her trainees, Adiba has simultaneously witnessed changes taking place in herself as well. “I remember the first class I ever taught,” she said with a reminiscent gleam in her eye. “My teaching wasn’t very good because I was pretty nervous. And I remember one of my colleagues that had observed the class gave me a scathing feedback that day, with lots of things I needed to improve on. So I did my best to improve on them, and two months later, the same person observed my class. This time after I finished, she said I’d done a much better job and she didn’t have much to correct! I’ll never forget that, because it showed how far I’d come in just a few months.” Unfortunately, situational circumstances have forced Adiba to put her work at ETASHA on hold for the moment. Undeniably though, the organization would not be the same without her influence and understanding nature.

Stay tuned to hear more about the people that make ETASHA so special!

–Abhishek Bhargava