International Development student Alice spent a week on a work experience placement with Christian Aid South East.
Here Alice tells us why experience helped her decide to pursue a career in the sector.
’I knew that I wanted to study International Development at university but was uncertain about my further career path. I decided to get in touch with Christian Aid’s Oxford office to see if I could join them for a week of work experience and happily, they said yes!’
‘My first task was a research project. This involved researching MPs and their interests in international development, including updating MP and MEP maps for the 2017 election in the five counties the office covers.’
‘During the week I got the chance to sit down with a whole range of staff members, including a part-time volunteer, the educational resources manager and business manager. This gave me an insight into the different roles within the charity sector and the significance of the work that each person does.’
‘The main project that I worked on was the annual Christmas Big Sing. A great event involving a number of local junior schools. I helped organise and put together the raffle, a key fundraiser at the event.This included designing a letter to send out to potential raffle prize donors and compiling a spreadsheet of potential companies to contact to ask about donating a prize. As well as contacting companies online and in-person at shops and restaurants in the city centre. The project allowed me to develop my communication skills and to gain an insight into fundraising and event planning.’
‘It was equally valuable to learn about Christian Aid’s campaigns, including The Big Shift energy campaign and its sustainable development goals. I’m passionate about climate change so it was great to learn more and to see how we, as individuals, can make a difference.’
‘It also gave me an insight into the impact of the charity’s work, for example in the areas of gender inequality and the refugee crisis, as well as methods of raising awareness and the impact of their work’.
‘To anyone looking to work in the charity sector, I would recommend doing work experience or volunteering. It has cemented my interest in international development and in a career working for an NGO. I carried out some interesting tasks, gained an insight into charity work and met some lovely people.’
Interested in volunteering or work experience at Christian Aid South East? Get in touch.