Julie, a NGO worker was preparing to go to India to work in the area of children's rights. She planned to raise awareness in the community about the long-term physical and emotional effects of child labour.
Julie believes strongly in the Convention on the Rights of Children India, children are perceived as not having their rights protected. Julie's local partners in India advised her to proceed with caution and to become more familiar with local perceptions of child labour.
Julie participated in a Pre-departure course in Intercultural Effectiveness where she learned culturally appropriate ways of communicating with her Indian counterparts and community stakeholders. Also, Julie verified her assumptions about the local perceptions of child labour during a meeting with a Country Subject Matter Expert.
Julie reported that she felt better equipped to manage the communication challenges within her stakeholder group. She also felt better able to express her ideas about how to change attitudes towards child labour and its significance at a social and community level without offending her colleagues and clients.
Pre-departure courses equip Canadians with the skills and knowledge to perform effectively in an intercultural context.