The WYA Europe internship – an enriching experience both in person and online!

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, I was extremely lucky to be able to have had the opportunity to do an internship for World Youth Alliance both in Brussels for 2 months and online for 1 month from September – December.

Before arriving in Brussels to start my internship, I didn’t have many expectations due to COVID-19. I was unsure of how long I was going to be able to stay in Brussels and so forth. However, I was really hoping that in the 3 months of doing my internship I would be able to deepen and broaden my knowledge on global issues in regards to ethical value, human dignity and human rights. I also hoped that by the end I would be able to further understand the necessity of protecting human dignity in order to convey this message to others in my day-to-day life, whether it be at university or somewhere else. I also hoped for the opportunity to participate and manage international events in order to meet and understand others from various different cultures, with different backgrounds and through meeting them, learning from them. Now, after having finished the internship, I can gladly admit that my internship definitely did meet all these expectations and more!

Being able to work alongside the WYA Europe Staff in the Brussels office was such a great experience through which I could really deepen and broaden my understanding and knowledge in regards to ethical values, human rights and dignity and its promotion. This was done through realizing project management and also sometimes social media tasks, weekly Certified Training Discussions (CTP), White Paper discussions and much more. I really enjoyed being able to help out in the organisation of events such as the Emerging Leaders Conference, which took place online. Seeing around 50 people from 13 different countries tune into the conference, all being enthusiastic and interested in the promotion of human rights, was just such an amazing experience. Also, being given the opportunity to re-do the CTP discussions were also just a great opportunity to again dive deep into insightful texts which really gave us a philosophical background and explored such important topics which also help you to appreciate the true as well as core value of human life which is human dignity. There are so many more examples I could list from my incredible experience however I believe that would bring us to too many pages of writing!

Because of the COVID-19 situation worsening in Brussels at the end of November, we decided to all part ways and continue our internship online. This, even though a bit tricky at first and having to take some getting used to, also really helped me and was a great experience. It really helped me to work more independently as well as helping me to build my self-confidence with the work I did.

Once again, I am so grateful to have been given this opportunity to work in a professional environment which really enriched me every day as this is something that I will now be able to continually promote in day-to-day life situations where I can defend the human person.

Published: December 15, 2020
Written by Agnes Freely, a WYA Europe intern from the UK