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Being an Intern in a developing country

Think outside the box, when choosing your internship

CAMBODIA | Wednesday, 9 August 2017 | Views [340]

Personally, I think it's important to keep in mind always to use your skills as best as possible. As a marketing student, I have kept in mind, that when I was going to do my internship at some point, it should be in a place where I could make the best use of the learning I received during the course of my education. I did not want to be in a big company, which already had a lot of paid marketing staff. The risk that I would get minimum responsibility and influence, and most likely would not be able to personally develop very much, looked quite big to me. "Why should the company spend time on me, when they have people they pay to do the tasks your study requires you to do?"

In addition, I find it hard to make it financially possible if I should stay in Denmark or work in western countries. You have to live on the allowance you get from the government but work full time "free". I greatly appreciate the Danish system and it is great that we get some kind of salary to study, but personally I would have trouble making it work unless I had to work every weekend or at night. This thought prompted me to find places that lacked people with my specialty and where my allowance would reach far enough for me not to push myself for extra work.When I visited Cambodia for the second time last year and was a tourist at NGOs, I thought that they would be interested in getting educated Westerners in the administration. Or at least that they would not say "No thanks!". To volunteers with specific specialties. Most of all, I think it was a good idea to seek out the opportunity, so that I could (as you say) make a difference.I contacted the NGO I had trekking trips with. Their animal welfare and nature projects interested me in greatly and I think they looked morally correct.What I found really exciting when I came here was that although the NGO's does their best and constantly becomes more modern in its view of true animal welfare, there is still far to reach and many in the West would probably shake their heads once in a while , but things take time and I think it's the people who stay here and work with the organization, whom really makes a difference, compared to those who judge and move on after a few days.

It is definitely a good idea to take a internship or to be volunteers for longer periods of time, with smaller NGOs who could use help from countries such as Denmark who are not in the development phase but who have know-how. It may sound arrogant, but it's true that we got some knowledge we can pass on, and if you come with a neutral view, stop judging and do not look down on those who try, you will be able to help in a real way and get a fantastic stay out of it. I have been welcomed with open arms and they appreciate that I would use my skills with them. At the same time, I am very honored that they listen intensely to what I have to say, help me with everything i ask and are not thinking "here comes another who think she's better than us".

Jump into it! Be courageous and most of all, get an important experience for life!

Please write me directly through Facebook, if you are interested in joining us. Marketing intern at Mondulkiri Elephant and Wildlife Sanctuary (http://mondulkirisanctuary.org) & Social media consultant at Find Job Abroad 

Me sitting at my favourite reading and project writing spot!

Me sitting at my favourite reading and project writing spot!

Tags: animals, cambodia, danish, denmark, elephants, intern, marketing, mondulkiri, nature, volunteer

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