Zaid Rassam – Research & Development Intern

Zaid Rassam – Intern
Zaid Rassam

“My internship with HAD has been a real eye-opener on the inner workings of a humanitarian development organisation. It has allowed me to build on my academic background and enhanced my passion for the sector”.


I graduated from Salford University with a BA Hons in International Relations and Politics followed by an immediate start in the governmental sector working for the Ministry of Justice. During my time at work I also completed a Master’s degree in International Relations from Coventry University.

Shortly after completing my Masters studies, I started my internship in the Research and Development Department at HAD. During my time in the role I have been exposed to countless opportunities to work on a number of projects.

My main focus during the internship has so far been assisting with the development of a programmes project on the Nexus Approach within the sector. I have been part of the initial meetings with stakeholders from Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW), including the Director of IRW’s International Programmes Division, and a number of other colleagues who provided input on the specific focus of the project. I was given the responsibility of writing a concept note for the project, which involved emphasising the aims and objectives, project activities, timeline and the expected outcomes. I also developed a budget estimate.

I also participated in the Muslim-Christian Summer School event in Oxford, where the Head of HAD’s Research and Development Department spoke about the environment and Islam. I enhanced my writing skills by writing a blog on the event. In addition, I have been asked to assist with the development of new programmes training courses, which has given me the chance to make a lasting impact in HAD’s mission. I have also assisted in the Quran Project – which is a joint project with HAD where I drafted a list of relevant funding sources for the project. I have improved and built on my communication skills when corresponding with internal and external stakeholders.

My internship has helped me develop my writing, communication and networking skills by taking on these jobs. I would recommend the internship programme for anyone considering a career in the sector. It will offer them the opportunity to delve into the sector in a measured yet stimulating way.

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