UNICEF Uzbekistan takes Free To Grow to a 32nd country

UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) believes that “all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfill their potential – to the benefit of a better world.” Located in the vibrant city of Tashkent, UNICEF Uzbekistan is committed to operationalising this belief by improving the lives of children (and their families) throughout the country.

As part of its drive to achieve the optimal work environment required for UNICEF Country Offices to achieve their objectives, UNICEF conducts an annual (or biennial) Global Staff Survey (GSS). In response to its 2017 results, the Uzbekistan Country Office wished to put in place a plan that would allow it to leverage its strengths, address its gaps and build a cohesive team.

Their 2017 Staff Retreat was identified as the perfect opportunity to do this, aligning employees across all levels to organisation’s vision and objectives. To achieve this, UNICEF Uzbekistan needed a strategic partner it could trust to deliver, one experienced in the fields of Change Management and Employee Engagement.

Having worked closely with many UNICEF Country Offices before, including Ethiopia, Sudan, Rwanda, Liberia, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Namibia, Lesotho, Swaziland, Madagascar, Iran, Jordan and Vietnam, Free To Grow (FTG) was identified as the ideal partner to facilitate a retreat that would create opportunity for engagement and growth.

Geraldine Leibbrandt, a FTG Director, Senior Facilitator and Consultant, was selected to lead the way and take Free To Grow into its 32nd country. “It was a privilege to journey with this team as they came to grips with where they were on their Personal, Team and Organisation Journeys. I was tremendously encouraged by their resilience and willingness to tackle difficult and stretching assignments to move closer to where they wish UNICEF Uzbekistan to be,” says Geraldine.

According to the Chief of Operations, Magd El-Gazzar, “we are grateful to the FTG team who put in a lot of effort to ensure that the retreat was fruitful and productive. To a certain extent, we were were surprised that this kind of retreat could reveal the real bottlenecks and create open environment for dialogue.” He continued to say that, “we would like to point out an outstanding performance by Geraldine in her organisation and facilitation of the retreat”.

Filled with a renewed sense of purpose, the Country Office is committed to continue its journey of growth, directing its focus and energy towards unlocking the full potential of UNICEF Uzbekistan. “This is indeed possible”, says Geraldine, “and I look forward to watching from the side-lines as this Country Office moves from strength to strength.”

UNICEF’s Uzbekistan team on their 2017 Staff Retreat.