I’m Rebecca Would, a first-year geography student from the University of Southampton and I recently completed an 8-week virtual internship with Think Pacific, a charitable organisation based in the UK and Fiji. Think Pacific is dedicated to working with Fijian charities, organisations and their Ministries to support Fiji in their national development plan and the 17 SDGs.
You always know its good to go for something when you keep going back to it, and that’s how it was for me when I first saw the fantastic opportunity for a virtual internship with Think Pacific, I just couldn’t concentrate on my work until I found out more! Lacking my normal busy schedule of many music groups a week I found myself bored with excess free time and coming across this opportunity lifted my day.
The program was exciting and vibrant, offering the chance to learn about the culture and lifestyle of Fijians before developing resources so that the impact I had was maximized. The slack workspace offered the chance to connect with other people similarly looking to make a difference, this was a huge thing as it made us interns feel like we were still part of a collective effort despite working alone. Having a personal mentor also made all the difference in producing an action project that was meaningful and well suited to me and my Fijian partner organisation – the Ministry of Education, Heritage and Arts.
Think Pacific offers 9 sectors to work in, ranging from NGO management to global health and the sector I personally chose to work in, education. My project required me to work creatively and innovatively to create interesting classroom activities for younger pupils that could be used to have deeper conversations around health, hygiene, safety and behaviour. I presented this to Ministry of Education as a document and associated videos, as varying the ways to provide information made it a more interesting proposal, and more useful directly in classrooms.
The program gave space for personal development and required me to manage my time effectively as well as improve my skills in a virtual workspace: networking, presenting, and creating useful resources. The program offered opportunity to look beyond my personal field of interest, watching speakers from all sectors in Fiji really opened me to consider beyond my personal project.
It was a fantastic experience overall, and one I would thoroughly recommend to anyone looking for something meaningful to do!
Vinaka and vanuinui vinaka ki na siga ni kua! (Thank you and have a good day!)