SHARINGS OF MÉLISSA
Intern’s name: Mélissa Parra
Project: Volunteers for Peace Vietnam
Almost a year ago, I came to Hanoi for the first time, volunteering with VPV (through UBELONG) to work in a caring center for disabled children (Phuc Tue Center) and also teach French in their Summer Classes. After going home, I decided to go back to Vietnam but this time to directly work in the NGO, as an intern. I have now been an intern for VPV for 9 months and this has been an incredibly enriching experience for me in many levels : I got to developed my professional and soft skills, I got to discover more about Vietnam and its culture and I also met a lot of new people.
Taking part in NGO’s actions in my country, like collecting funds for them or collecting food for homeless people, volunteering abroad had been a dream of mine for a long time. Finally getting this opportunity felt like a dream come true.
Being an intern at VPV, I got the opportunity to learn and develop more office skills but it also gave me a chance to acquire more knowledge about the education in Vietnam as well as the way of taking care and teaching disabled children. I do join multiple activities next to my office work, for example work camps, IYM English teaching class, S-World, etc…
Besides, I live with our international volunteers which is nice because in the weekends and evenings we get to enjoy time together, do fun activities and travel.
Living abroad and working in a multicultural environment is not always easy and I met a few challenges, for example the language barrier or the different ways of working. But in the end, by being open-minded, and trying to understand, to adapt to this new culture, everything went well and I got to discover even more about Vietnam.
Living in Vietnam and working as an intern for VPV has also been for me a way to discover more about myself and grow up as a person through travelling, working and discovering new things everyday.
To sum up, I am really grateful for my time here , all the opportunities I got and the memories I have made during this few months and I hope it keeps going that well until the end of my internship."