“Having completed an Undergraduate degree in International Development and a Masters in Human Rights I felt that the natural progression was to look for a career within a NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation).
I already had an understanding of human rights, refugees, criminal law and conflict through my studies and volunteering at a number of organisations. What I really wanted was an opportunity for a more structured internship and in particular in an environment where I would be able to grow my skills and expertise.
I came across the Islamic Relief Internship programme through Relief Web and was keen to get my application across. I was successful in being invited for a phone interview (which I passed) and was then invited to Birmingham to meet the Head of Middle East and the Regional Desk Coordinator from Islamic Relief World Wide for a face to face meeting.
I felt that interview went ok but in these situations you never can tell.
On the day of my graduation I received the great news that I had been offered the position of Middle East Regional Desk Intern.
I subsequently moved to Birmingham for the duration of my internship – it was all very exciting.
I read Islamic Relief Worldwide publications online to familiarise myself with the organisation prior to my first day as I wanted to be as prepared as possible. I also had a fairly good idea of what the job entailed through the job description and the interview but nonetheless I was still a little apprehensive on the eve of my first day.
My first day went very fast! Everyone I met was so nice and friendly and made me feel at home. I was thrown into the deep end and was tested out, but looking back at it I loved the challenge.
Throughout the period of my internship I was always able to get stuck in. I did far more than I expected to, not that I’m complaining! For example I was able to critically look at proposals, given the responsibility of amending field reports and also took over the administration process once a donor confirms their involvement.
With Islamic Relief being such a large organisation my assumption was that my contact with other departments would be limited. Nothing was further from the truth. Everyone was open to questions and receptive to collaboration. It’s a cliché but every day was different and the days never dragged.
This internship confirmed what I had known all along – I want to work in Human Rights, International Development and Humanitarian work.
I would without hesitation recommend the Islamic Relief Internship. I feel that debating things in lectures is great but being able to see the clarity of your thoughts in your actions through an internship is invaluable and one all graduates should jump at the chance to be involved in”.