Krista, our Community Fundraising Manager had the opportunity to host an intern in her team. She hosted Lorenzo for three months at the RNIB head office in London. They share their internship experience with us.
Why did you choose to do an internship with us?
At the time of my application, I had recently graduated in Psychology and felt that I wanted to work for a charity to marry my interest and passion in helping others with hands on experience in the head-office of a large national charity.
My grandad has been blind since the 50s and, when I grew up, I always helped him out, from sighted guiding to transcribing or reading newspapers to him. This personal link to the cause is definitely one of the drives that brought me to apply for an Internship with RNIB.
What do you feel you have gained from doing an internship with us?
Completing a 3-months internship at RNIB for the Community Fundraising team has been a baptism of fire! The always-changing timetable and variety of activities I have been involved have allowed me to gain invaluable transferrable skills such as interpersonal skills and communication skills that I was not able to completely develop at University. I had the chance to increase my network and push my limits by speaking with people at fundraising events and presenting to crowds. I am really grateful to all I have learned at RNIB and I would 100% recommend to anyone to apply for an Internship here.
How do you feel your internship has made a difference to the everyday lives of blind and partially sighted people?
Being able to attend so many fundraising events such as See Through Sound, allowed me to help raise vital funds that will pay for services in support to people with sight loss such as the essential Talking Books service. This is definitely one of the most important services as it allows people with sight loss of all ages to have access to an activity that a lot of people take for granted, reading.
If you could sum your internship in one sentence, what would you say?
Never stop going out of your comfort zone if you want to achieve great things!
Do you have any favourite moments, highlights or special stories about volunteering with us that you’d like to share?
One of my highlights of my time at RNIB has definitely been having a tour of the RNIB Camden Studios where professional actors record Talking Books. It has been a great opportunity to see how this essential service is produced and delivered.
Another highlight of my RNIB journey has been landing a paid role with the Volunteering team. It is great to know that my hard work as an Intern has paid off and that I will be able to carry on building on my experience in the charity sector while enhancing my skills.
Krista shares what the experience was like for her:
If you could describe your experience of hosting an intern in one sentence, what would you say?
Having an intern on the team is invaluable – it is definitely worth doing and I will be putting in my application for another intern later in the year!
How do you feel hosting an intern has made a difference to the service your team provides to people with sight loss?
Hosting an intern has really helped, as it has provided additional support to the team. I was able to reach more potential supporters and complete research projects that were in the pipeline.
The interns were able to provide support and assistance at a series of events such as fairs and collections or any other impromptu fundraisers by taking the lead and managing volunteers or preparing resources. Their help has made a huge difference in raising funds in aid of blind and partially sighted people.
Do you have any favourite moments or highlights that you’d like to share?
The highlights have been seeing my first intern Lorenzo securing a position at the RNIB after completing his internship with us. It was great to work with Lorenzo and see him develop his skills, knowledge and confidence throughout his internship. He made such a positive impact in the team, I wasn’t surprised that he was successful when a position became available in the organisation.
Another of my highlights was when I asked my second intern, Gary, to give a talk on volunteer day to other volunteers. He shared what he had gained from his experience here and why he had enjoyed his experience at RNIB. When he started he initially was interested in working in the charity sector. However his talk showed that after learning more about RNIB, Gary feels he is an ambassador for the charity and has become very passionate about the cause.