As an internee, I would say my experience at ACFODE was life changing because a lot of things that I didn’t know concerning gender and work ethics were lessons I learnt and this was a very positive impact to me. First of all, the working environment was generally interesting because of the new things I was getting to learn. On my first day, I was oriented by the Executive Director, I wasn’t the only intern so there was no way I would be bored in my free time and the staff members were also nice people.
During my stay at ACFODE between 5th June to 31st July, I was placed under the Gender and Economic Policy Department under the supervision of Ms. Rukondo Rebecca. In this department I had regular assignments to do which needed me to read books and do research on the internet to get the relevant information that would answer the questions asked. I also happened to attend a workshop. Here I was able to learn communication skills i.e. ways of addressing myself as I observed how the participants where bringing out their issues to be discussed, the value of group/team work because during some of the sessions at the work shop we were placed under different groups to discuss and this improved on the topic being discussed.
At ACFODE, I also attended meetings i.e with my supervisor and fellow interne (Konga Lynda) because we were only two under the same department. We also had meetings with the staff and internees that were held every Monday after two weeks. These meetings were to give updates of different departments, the activities that had taken place, they generally where about sharing of ideas and making recommendations where possible. Throughout my stay at ACFODE my involvement in different activities helped me gain experience that I lacked before for example report writing, how to use a photo copying machine, prepare and pack materials for field work activities, my gender knowledge increased, my reasoning and thinking, and so much more.
Besides the work related issues, every day I and my colleagues received tea and lunch meaning we didn't have to go anywhere to get what to eat or drink. This was very impressive because very few work places provide lunch and I hadn’t heard any of my campus friends ever tell me that where they were doing internship from they were being provided with lunch. Once in a while we would be given snacks to take with tea especially when there were meetings.
I had fun interacting with my fellow Internees from different universities, we were 7 in total; 3 from Makerere University, 3 from Kyambogo University, and 1 from Kampala International University. Having given the chance to seat together in ACFODE’s resource room, we used to interact most times especially after finishing our assignments. We shared experiences of school and even those that were non-school related. Every evening we would all depart from ACFODE together.
Interacting too with scholars from the University of Minnesota was interesting, getting to know their way of living how they got to know about ACFODE, the experiences they had had among others. These were some of the memorable occasions I enjoyed and had with my new friends. I can’t forget the office attendant Aunt Robinah and Aunt Annette our Chef at ACFODE who always made me and the rest of the interns feel welcome. The care and the attention made us feel like we were at home and we belonged to one family.
In conclusion, I extend my utmost and sincere gratitude to the Executive Director, Ms. Regina Bafaki and the entire staff of ACFODE for the support, advice and encouragement. I also thank my colleagues for their team work.
May God bless you.