Today is Franceska’s last day as the Justice Projects Intern at IARS. Here is what Franceska had to say about her time at IARS:

Being a Justice Projects Intern at IARS has provided me a great insight into how a social policy think tank operates. As my internship comes to an end, I am left feeling startled by how quickly 7 weeks have gone by. I am forever grateful for the opportunity and support I had from my fellow colleagues who I have learnt a great deal from.

During my internship, I felt that my duties were broad and ever-changing. It’s tough to recall everything I have taken in over the past 7 weeks. Nonetheless, I have learnt a significant amount that I can confidently apply to future workplaces.

Starting this internship was quite overwhelming, I felt that I lacked confidence about what I could do and what I am good at. This position has strengthened my understanding of my skill set and where I may specialise in the future. I’ve been provided with great support and guidance from colleagues, especially from my manager, Maija. Anything I had trouble with or did not understand, I could simply ask for help.

I was instantly given responsibility to each project that I worked on. For instance, on my third day I had the opportunity to write a blog post concerning domestic violence and how “Protasis” is conducting strategies to train police to better protect victims of hate crime. After this, I was working on “Restore: Respect” a pilot project for the Home Office – working to tackle hate crime in Bradford. My task was to conduct quantitative and qualitative research, from the workshop questionnaires. Finally, I was responsible for proofreading and adjusting the feedback given.

The hands-on experience was one of the aspects of the internship I enjoyed as I personally believe the best way to learn is to be fully immersed during projects and shrink away from any responsibility.

During my final weeks, I was offered the opportunity to experience Vilnius, Lithuania for six days, to which I immediately said yes to! During this week I worked on “Promyse” a project enhancing social entrepreneurship in the health a social care sector. You can find more information about my trip, here: https://www.iars.org.uk/content/reflection-my-first-work-trip-abroad

The people I worked with on a daily basis have not only provided me with support, but have listened and considered any suggestions I have had. The internship has had a positive experience on me and I urge every young person to consider interning, volunteering or simply offering their time to causes, because the end results are ever so rewarding and have a massive impact on yourself, and your community. 

We are truly grateful for Franceska’s hard work and contributions at IARS, and we would like to wish her the best of luck in her future endeavours! Thank you Franceska!