Author: Emily, WAR, Int’l Intern
What initially brought me to WAR was my interest in the anti-trafficking and anti-sexual exploitation movement that started several years ago. I knew I wanted an internship before graduating college for work experience, and I wanted my internship to be at an organization working in the anti-trafficking area since I’m considering working in a non-profit after graduation.
My mom visited the WAR Chest Boutique last year and sent me some earrings and brochures, and that’s how I first heard about this specific organization. My initial interview was very encouraging, and when I was offered the internship that had a lot of flexibility for my personal schedule, I accepted.
I’ve learned many things from my time here!! One thing I really appreciated was having a much more in-depth understanding of how a small non-profit organization like WAR operates and is influential locally and internationally. The need for partnering with other non-profits and shelters/programs is something I’ve taken out of this internship. I’ve been impressed by the high business and ethical standards here.
I’ve also learned that there are many different jobs needed in a non-profit organization (and a lot of overlap between positions when it’s a smaller non-profit!). That’s encouraging to me, since my major is Sociology and not Social Work, and so I know I can’t be involved in the social work aspect of anti-trafficking organizations with just a Bachelors.
I’ve learned the extreme importance of cultural sensitivity in this field, both internationally–I remember Becky’s story about the University of Chicago(?) trying to get abused women divorces in a culture where that’s a bad idea–and locally, since shelters in the United States are modeled after international shelters and so aren’t as effective here because of our individualistic values.
One other thing I learned was how to make effective social media posts, specifically using language consistent with the organization and avoiding language that could mislead or overwhelm the audience. Since my minor is in Communications, I really appreciated getting this experience, and also being able to use my sociological appreciation of statistics as well.
My next steps after this internship will be to talk to my advisor about how I can perhaps utilize my specific Sociology degree in the anti-trafficking field. I want to find out if getting a Masters is enough to help me work in some research capacity in the future. But whether or not I end up working in an anti-trafficking/sexual exploitation organization, I want to remain involved by volunteering with local organizations, sharing on social media, and donating once I become financially stable post-graduation.
Although the things I’ve learned during my internship has been overwhelming at times, I still feel very and more passionate about this important issue, and I also feel more equipped to talk about it. Overall my internship has been a great experience, and I’ve really enjoyed and will miss working with my fellow interns and my supervisors here.
Call To Actions –