I interned at RIJ for just under a year but thinking back on all the things I have worked on and been involved in, I find it almost unbelievable that it was all done in such a short period of time. I’ve written grant applications to help fund RIJ’s projects overseas, given a presentation about refugee issues to a gym full of Japanese middle school students, volunteered at events, gotten to know RIJ’s projects intimately and the list goes on and on.
Learning the workings of a non-profit organization has been endlessly rewarding. I’ve developed a much more concrete idea of how humanitarianism functions in conjunction with volunteerism and fundraising. This has supplemented my previously rather textbook understanding of humanitarianism, and will help me to look at my work in a new and different light upon returning to the University of Washington, where I will continue my studies in International Relations.