My Internship, A Worthy Investment!
By Ann Ruguru Njeru, AMWIK Intern & Maseno University Student
I came to AMWIK in June and asked for an internship and it has been a great ride from the word go. Being a 3rd year student at Maseno University, doing an internship is not compulsory but I felt that it would add to my experience and indeed, AMWIK has been what I thought of and more. My eyes have been opened to many issues that afflict women and children and it has inspired me to do something to alleviate the situation now that I school in the rural areas and my Communication and Media degree requires us to carry out similar programmes in the communities surrounding the varsity.
Media monitoring is a skill that I have learnt, I have been monitoring daily newspapers on their coverage of the reform agenda and women’s rights. I have also been tasked with compiling stories for newsletter on the Ford Foundation Peace Programme in Naivasha and Maiella which has put my organizational skills to the test.
I also got to interact with exchange participants from other countries – Anna Nkinda from Tanzania and Anbika Giri from Nepal – who taught me much about their cultures.
I also learnt teamwork as I joined efforts with AMWIK staff to accomplish different tasks. A couple of times I paired up with Anna, the FK exchange participant from Tanzania Media Women Association (TAMWA) on various tasks like monitoring the civic education programme on the proposed constitution and updating of the AMWIK twitter site which we are doing successfully.
Proposal writing was another skill I learnt as I worked on a draft for a proposed training for journalists on Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV).
I had my own hilarious moments like when I was to write minutes and I got all the terminologies wrong like Gender Based Violence (GBV) and Gender & Governance Programme (GGP) but thanks to Linda Ongwenyi, the AMWIK programmes Assistant, I got them right.
I thank all the AMWIK staff for accepting me and mentoring and guiding me whenever I went wrong. I have made friends at AMWIK who I know will last a lifetime and I also thank them for believing in me and accepting me in their big happy family. I am grateful to Lilian Juma, the Programmes Officer for editing my work and to everyone in general who would stop what they were doing to show me how to do something or do an explanation.
I got a chance to represent AMWIK in some meetings and got to dine in big hotels and brush shoulders with the high and mighty.
I also got a chance to accompany AMWIK staff to field visits, particularly in Maiella, Naivasha where we flagged off a Peace Football tournament between the warring communities.
I must also say that I learnt to be responsible and organized and do my own work without wasting time on the internet as no one follows anyone around.
I would to advice my fellow students to take their long holidays as opportunities to do internship programmes or volunteer work as it boosts their experience and competency, in addition to boosting their CV. They should do this whether they are getting paid or not or even getting assessed by their lecturers. You will also get a chance to maximize your potential and it is way better than bumming at home.