Focus on Fellows
Human Resources Specialist, Internal Audit Directorate, Ministry of Finance
Afghan Fellow - 2016, Coach - 2018
“It is essential to encourage women, as well as train them on leadership and effective decision-making,” said Mina Naikmal, a Programme Specialist for the Afghanistan Ministry of Finance.
Mina has been participating as one of 29 Fellows in the six-month-long UNITAR Afghanistan Fellowship Programme (AFP) 2016 Cycle, which focuses on capacity development for Afghan professionals in leadership, teamwork, and project development and implementation.
Mina has inspiring passion and motivation. She wanted to participate in the programme to learn how to work effectively in a diverse team, while also developing her own capacity as a team member.
"The programme has helped me define, develop, and lead a team consisting of people with different ideas and behaviors,” Mina said. Learning techniques of effective leadership and team-building will help Mina empower other women to take initiative as leaders.
Mina’s group is working on a project related to an online contract monitoring system for the Afghanistan Ministry of the Interior and Ministry of Defense. The system already exists, but ministry officials are unfamiliar with how to use it. The project plans on-the-job trainings, as well as instructional manuals and videos, to improve officials’ capacity to work with this system.
Along with teamwork, leadership, and communication skills, Mina said she learned how to concretely plan out the activities and steps necessary to implementing this – or any – project. She learned how to identify organizational needs and develop projects to address them as well. Project development can play a critical role in social change thorough collaboration with various organizations, including initiatives for women's empowerment.
During the programme’s third workshop, held in Hiroshima, Mina was inspired by the local people’s commitment to reconstruction following the atomic bombing, particularly stories of women’s efforts.
Mina believes the training’s well-designed combination of theory and practice will help her achieve her goal. The entire UNITAR Hiroshima Office looks forward to observing her journey for women’s empowerment in Afghanistan.
Mina returned as a Coach for the 2018 Cycle of the programme, during which she successfully guided her team of Fellows as they worked to develop a project proposal about beekeeping in Afghanistan's Bamyan Province. In addition to her continued role with UNITAR, Mina successfully implemented in her workplace a project she designed utilizing her training from the fellowship. You can read Mina's project summary here and a local news article here.