Community is one of the main things Future Heroes goes by. A perfect example of the Heroes community are Laura-Liis Järvela, a Future Hero and her mom Piret Luts who works at Nortal, one of the partner firms this year. To understand the connection better, we asked some questions from them in the last workshop.
How are you both connected to Future Heroes?
Laura-Liis: "I was a participant in the first year and been a Big Sister for almost 3 years. I'm always working on something here."
Piret: "I'm mostly connected through Laura-Liis. If I remember correctly, I was the one to send her the link to apply for this program and after that I've been watching her from the side and always doing my best to help and support both Laura-Liis and the community on the bigger scale."
Has Future Heroes brought you closer as a family?
Laura-Liis: "It definitely has brought us two closer, but as for the family part, there are times we both need to be away from home because of the program. It still is something that we can all talk about at home - sometimes we even debate about the topics related to the program at home with other family members."
Piret: "Building a community for recruiters and also being quite busy with work, I haven't been at home very much, but I think that thanks to Laura-Liis being an active member in the program, she has understood more why I'm so much away due to work. That's why I think it definitely has brought us closer.
How has Future Heroes affected your everyday life?
Laura-Liis: "It has made my life a lot busier. Before coming to Heroes I didn't have much to do with my free time since I had just quit basketball, but when I came to the program I had something to do again. At first it was just a hobby I had, but now it has become much more. I would much rather do the web page for the Future Heroes than do my homework, if I'm being honest. Even today, on a Saturday, I'm here at a workshop, not at home doing my homework."
Piret: "In ways the program has also affected me; I'm really proud that she's really into the program and she develops herself to be a future talent, not forgetting the skills she has gotten from here. But on the other hand as a mom I also worry a bit for her because she does a lot of things and being a person that won't give up on things, it could be easy for her to burn out. Besides the happiness and the worry, just like Laura-Liis, I'm also spending some of my Saturdays with Heroes now, but I find that this is the quality time for us."
Have you learned anything about each other during the program?
Piret: " I definitely have. I always knew that Laura-Liis had a more mature mindset than other youngsters her age, but the program showed me how mature she really is and it makes me very surprised and proud. Also the meaningful conversations about serious topics, that we have now, have made us closer and more understanding in a way."
Laura-Liis: "The program has given me a chance to really see what my mom does for work and see her in action more."
What are the most important values that Future Heroes has taught you?
Laura-Liis: "It's hard to say, because there's so much I have learned. One of the things is definitely the importance of having a structure to something. To make a team or an organisation work, it's important to not only appreciate the people in it but also work a lot and know what you are doing, or at least know how to figure it out. Another thing that the Heroes has given me is the courage and bravery to do something."
Piret: " For me it has definitely shown me that there is much more hidden in the younger generation than I thought. Looking at the people here, there is huge hope for the future because there are young people who can already do big things and change the way we see the world today. Besides the hope for the future, I can also see some true grit- a great value that a lot of the Heroes have."
Why is it important to build a community?
Laura-Liis: "Who would like to be all alone? Everyone needs someone to lean on, and at other times, to be the support system for somebody else. It's a compromise needed for things to work."
Piret: "I'm a true believer of communities. Besides my everyday work, I'm actually running the Estonian recruiters community and I know how hard it is to build up a meaningful relationship within this kind of a huge group of people. I see how the Future Heroes have been doing really well in terms of building a community and that makes me happy. I also agree with Laura-Liis that no one wants to be all alone. That's why having a community is necessary and important. Being in a community makes hard times easier and good times even better."
How do you encourage each other when one of you has a tough time?
Piret: "We talk a lot. It actually makes me really happy that I have such a great relationship with my daughter that we are able to do that. As a mom, I also think that a parent shouldn't lean on the kids for support.That's why I have other people for that. But even the fact that she is very understanding and helpful means a lot to me."
Laura-Liis: "I agree that we talk a lot. With me being there for her, I think it's not what I'm giving to her but rather the fact that during the hard times I try to be more understanding like she said and also not bugging her as much."
Written by Getterli Aavik