When Mr. Khamtou became an Employment Support Services (ESS) coach in late 2020, it was the first time that he has been a coach to participants. He said that it has been a demanding experience for him. "Working as an ESS coach has many challenges, such as coordination with provincial and district authorities, because I have had no previous experience," he said.
Mr. Khamtou said that the process of selection of beneficiaries is thorough. "I check all applicants’ information based on the requirements of the project to ensure that they are indeed eligible for participation, such as young unemployed people, with low education and from poor economic backgrounds," he explained.
He said he was very happy to have opportunities to work with village authorities and the beneficiaries. For him, it was a totally new experience.
"The best part is that I have the opportunity to develop myself and to gain new experiences. I have learned about peoples' lives and realize that there are still many disadvantaged people who need our support".
Mr. Khamtou gained confidence in communication and coaching skills since becoming an ESS coach: "I have now the courage to think, speak, and express myself among others."
In addition, his relationship with the other ESS coach is very good: "We help each other and have a task division with clear responsibilities," said Mr. Khamtou. Coaching is very important to Mr. Khamtou. For him, coaching is about providing guidance to unemployed people to find out what profession they like to do and then support them to reach this goal.
It was hard to recover after the first outbreak of the pandemic because a lot of the businesses had closed. It made internships and applying for jobs a lot harder for the participants in our province. Many participants dropped out during this time. Challenged by this, Mr. Khamtou applied what he learned from the training of coaches, and he developed capacity-building workshops for the trainees to change their mindset.