WFP has been a truly life-changing and eye-opening experience for me. Once I heard we had a chance to blog about our experience I knew I could not pass up the opportunity. I hope to share the thoughts, stories, and lessons learned “from the intern desk” of Patrick. With each week that goes by there is so much that happens and I find myself telling my friends, families, and whoever else will listen.
Where to begin? I’ve now been an intern at HQ, Rome, for 8 weeks. I’m part of the Government Donor Relations (ERD) team and I’m proud to say this is an environment where I have been challenged every single day. Eight weeks, and I’m still amazed at how this passionate group of individuals is responsible for billions of dollars of government contributions every year. In 2010, year to date, our team has secured over US $2.2 billion dollars to feed malnourished people around the world. Many people don’t realize that governments are the overwhelming source of funding for WFP. What’s more, all government support is on an entirely voluntary basis. On average, over 60 governments underwrite the humanitarian and development projects of WFP.
Our office is hands-down the most international environment I’ve ever been a part of. If I stop to listen I can hear my co-workers talking to donors in Italian, French, Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, you name it. In fact, each Donor Relations Officer (DRO) is responsible for a different donor country or group of countries from around the world. On Friday I met our newest team member from Moscow who will be leading our talks with Russia. And Last week another co-worker arrived from Egypt who will work with donors in the Middle East. But the best part is that everyone on our team is so friendly, accessible, and helpful!
More posts to come soon!
Patrick Glover is from Houston and interns with Government Donor Relations. He loves cycling, bacio gelato, and fighting hunger.