Submitted by Maryam Moein-Alghorabaei

With the advent of Pandemic restrictions, the PNG, an Iranian charity in Tehran, was forced to stop all of its face-to-face meetings, in-house vocational trainings, and educational activities.

With over 300 help-seeking members, PNG is a registered charity, affiliated with the UN for several years; and it has worked for the empowerment of low-income women, orphan girls, and women and girls from a very poor background. PNG vocationally trains women and empowers the trainees to move out of poverty. It also helps girls and financially supports them to attend their school whether in person or online.  

As an executive coach, Maryam Moein-Alghorabaei was approached by the PNG board of directors to look into their practices in the light of the new situation. The board includes five members to whom Maryam provided nine hours of pro bono coaching and three hours of training.

Following the team coaching sessions the board was able to control their stresses of the stoppage of the institute activities. Despite their initial divergence of views, the board could align to move their vocational trainings online that it was not an easy decision. However, they made a bold decision not only to close their office and work from home but to spend the money they could save on purchasing smartphones and tablets for their help-seeking members. They also trained their members on how to use their new equipment to join online classes. In the coaching sessions, the board also experienced a safe environment among themselves for more open debates and discussions without judgment, giving feedback appropriately enabling them to rewrite their internal guidelines of the PNG to be more efficient.

Moving online also made their activities and training more visible to donors who contributed funds for PNG to purchase more tablets for their eligible members.