Key Findings

user outcomes

Key outcomes

The service users that participated in GOAL were in most cases pleased with the guidance, judging by the satisfaction survey and the follow-up survey. They thought the guidance was motivating, helpful and supplied them with useful information. They also felt the counsellors were dedicated to helping them, competent and professional. The clients within the GOAL target group experienced difficult circumstances and in most cases lacked the initiative and confidence that was needed to improve their situation and thus achieve measurable outcomes such as enrolment in adult education courses. Even so, there were positive (often smaller) outcomes. Most of the clients had been informed about pathways regarding educational- and career development, learning- and employment opportunities. They experienced increased confidence and had a better idea about their future aims. Immigrants within the project were very grateful for the help and the information they got. For most clients the self-efficacy remained the same or improved. Their attitudes to learning improved and they were more aware of their learning/career goals. Most of the clients achieved their aims during the counselling, fully or partially. In the follow-up survey most of the participants felt the guidance had increased their confidence in achieving their goals.

But there were also many hindrances, e.g. lack of time, various health problems and a lack of readiness needed to take the next steps. The immigrants were proportionally more likely to have completed all guidance sessions, which might imply higher level of readiness within that group and different needs or hindrances.

The counsellors felt the guidance had been successful in many ways. They clients seemed to be pleased, they were better aware of their options and new what services were available to them. Even if they didn’t have the necessary readiness to take advantage of opportunities for educational- or career development, the counsellor felt that they had planted seeds that the clients would be able to grow in the future should they reach the appropriate level of readiness. Pushing people that aren’t ready can bring out undesired outcomes. Finding out where the service users are in terms of readiness and taking the guidance from there, being patient and considerate is the most important lesson counsellors learned in connection to service user’s outcomes.

Stakeholders felt the project brought about positive outcomes. Service users seemed to benefit from the guidance. The increased cooperation brought about by the GOAL project, has had positive effects on service users. Interest and willingness for continued cooperation has been generated. However, stakeholders expressed concerns about lack of financial resources and appropriate pathways for the target group, raising hopes that could not be met due to structural barriers.

Important outcomes in the GOAL project were often at the systemic level, particularly in terms of counsellors’ increased competence and the development of collaborative partnership and networks. The enhanced collaboration between different organisations increased the possibility of providing a holistic and well-integrated set of services that address the complex, inter-linked needs of vulnerable adults.

Strengths and achievements

The main strengths in terms of service user’s outcomes was increased motivation and confidence within the group. The clients were more aware of the services available to them and pathways for educational- and career development. Many have begun working towards their competence development – be it personal or professional. Counsellors competence, the effective collaboration with stakeholders, knowledge and information sharing about the target group, available recourses and appropriate methods/tools, have all contributed to positive service user’s outcomes.  

Challenges and barriers

The main challenges in connection to service user’s outcomes were inner hindrances and structural barriers. Lack of commitment and readiness resulted in fewer clients being able to take advantage of the opportunities available in education/career development. Resolving complex personal issues, that go beyond the scope of educational- and vocational guidance, are in most cases a necessary prerequisite for further educational/career development. Despite increased access to quality guidance services and counsellor’s competence, lack of available financial resources (e.g. scholarships, subsidy of learning expenses) create a structural barrier when the clients reach the appropriate level of readiness to take the next steps.

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A COUNSELLOR

Iceland
Iceland

"GOAL interview: a client came to discuss a program for validation of employability skills, in which she is going to participate."

"In-house discussions with other counsellors and project managers on an unexpected issue with a student. We tried to solve the issue together. We had to contact another school."

Lithuania
Lithuania

“Presentation for unemployed people about possibilities to get involved into the Goal project and get free of charge orientation and guidance.”

“Orientation and guidance of adult people. 2 clients are consulted: they are unemployed and have plans for learning a new profession in order to find a job.“

Netherlands
Netherlands

“The prison population and educational needs of the detainees are far from homogeneous.”

 “Usually, there are 6 to 8 detainees at a time, each with an individual program. I guide them. The guidance can be focused on basic education, vocational education or specific courses detainees are taking at that time”

Slovenia
Slovenia

"Working with clients gives me energy and brings me joy, because between individual sessions I can see progress, changes, new beliefs, enrolment in education programmes and I can build good relationships with my clients."

 

"The feeling that I do a lot of good for my clients is priceless."

Czech Republic
Czech Republic

“At the start of every session, counsellors try to gather information about the client, his or her position within the family and wider friendship circles, and his or her health. They also explore the client’s feelings, ideas and motivation.”

“Based on the client’s answers, the counsellor selects ways to proceed in order to meet the client’s needs and goals.”

Flanders
Flanders

"All information, agreements made and steps taken during sessions are written down in the registration system"

“Even the names of persons clients have been talking about are registered in order to remember the whole communication line and, more importantly, to avoid them having to say things twice. It creates a sense of trust with our clients.”

TESTIMONIALS

from clients, counsellors and stakeholders

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