By Aiko Shigeta

Throughout my three months at RIJ, I have had precious opportunities and memorable experiences. I have monitored social network sites, including Facebook and Twitter to update our followers with upcoming events and important information; translating documents and emails which are distributed to IMG_0666individuals, organizations, and companies; and planning and organizing a fundraising event.

My studies for International Affairs has taught me a great deal of the refugee crisis around the world; and the difficult situation and challenges the refugees face. However, my experience here at RIJ has taken me beyond that. I have learned that in reality, the refugees do not end at “I am depressed as I have lost everything.” In fact, there is much more to it. Refugees are exerting their efforts in trying to rebuild their lives and restore human dignity. These phrases has been inspiring me throughout my internship and will continue to in the future.

I have realized the significance of the human spirit. This may sound philosophical, but there is no limit to human potentiality. The refugees are just like us. They carry the same emotions, feelings, dignity, and potential. The only difference is the environment we were born in. When I think of this, I feel that there is no limit to what I can do, and can continue to challenge myself for the coming future.

After 11 weeks of interning at RIJ, I am now confident in explaining to others about the reality of refugees and my experiences here at RIJ. It requires courage to go beyond what you know to understand the unknown; however, this experience will definitely lead to new possibilities and a better future.