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English Makes Cents

By Salome Modebadze
Wednesday, April 28
At Tbilisi private school Olympi the English Makes Cents (EMC) Association and non-governmental organisation New People Generation (NPG) held the opening ceremony of an international 5-week course for the 9th, 10th and 11th forms of schools in the Saburtalo district on April 26. The course is being held in parallel with the Financial Literacy Month declared by President Barack Obama in the US. The English Makes Cents course is taught internationally and aims to help students develop the life skills of self-confidence, teamwork, facility in speaking English and entrepreneurial skills.

Nino Sanodze, who took a previous English Makes Centrs course, shared her experience of it. I can now start my own business and manage it in a wise manner thanks to the important experience I gained through English Makes Cents, said Nino.

On April 23 at Public School Number 53 NPG gave 27 schoolchildren who had participated in the same business course in the Vake district international certificates. Tamar Darakhvelidze, External Relations Manager for NPG, evaluated its progress for The Messenger. Our organisation is just one year old but we have successfully undertaken several projects so far. The international course English Makes Cents aims at teaching young people how to understand their finances, develop personal skills and become active members of civil society. Schoolchildren from Vake district have taken these introductory business workshops taught by Mary Ellen Chatwin, Director and certified EMC instructor, Tamar said, stressing that her organisation will continue to offer Georgian youth a pathway to success.

The course also promotes awareness of personal financial issues and issues such as savings, budgeting, risk-taking, competition, etc and is available to anyone who wishes to advance their English conversation skills, increase their chances of becoming employed or acquire financial skills. The certificate presented for the satisfactory completion of the course opens two doors: employers like to know that their staff are aware of financial issues and since Dr. Chatwin resides in Georgia she will recommend former students to prospective employers if requested.

I was excited by the process as I met very active pupils from Tbilisi schools who attended the courses regularly. They learnt how to work with money in a responsible way. I think young Georgian people need to start thinking about how to lead their lives responsibly. English Makes Cents is based on the ideas of learning English and acquiring business skills which will bring double advantages for youth. Ive been in Georgia for almost 20 years and have worked on programmes for young people for much of that time. I know that young people really need these skills. Thats why I started this Association, and well become an Ltd soon, Mary Ellen Chatwin told The Messenger.

NPG became a partner of EMC after one of its members took the course and recommended it to the NGO. The two organisations share the same values as regards developing future generations as active members of civil society. Nino Nodia is the leader of New People Generation and initiated this partnership.