The following as an account by FBEPS students Mohammad Rahiman bin Bahrin and Kwang Wei Sen who completed their Internship at Mercy Relief, Singapore.
Rahiman: I was inspired by the organisation’s way of operation and fascinated by how Mercy Relief is able to operate with such small workforce. It has opened my eyes on management, coordination, and how the organisational structure gives impact to the organisation itself.
Kwang: From time to time, I read on the news about the occurrence of disasters and several emergency relief teams have been deployed on the ground helping the victims. I determined to learn more about how the relief organization performs and how they collaborate with other partners for relief operations on the region at risk. I am also interested to know more about their procedures and ways they obtain their funds. My faculty coordinator, Sir Azrin, has suggested me to intern in Mercy Relief and so I began to learn about the organization. What inspired me was when I saw various relief organizations giving their efforts to provide assistance, food supplies to the victims and implement development projects for the victims in the disaster-stricken area.
Rahiman: We participated in their fundraising projects which are important in providing the organisation funds to operate via World Food Day, Bohol Earthquake, Haiyan Relief, to name a few.
Internship in Mercy Relief has given me tons of new experiences. In MR, I was working with the International Programme division where my tasks are mostly to monitor the natural disasters and provide the organisation with updated information. One of the challenges of working in this division was my limited geographical and meteorological knowledge. I worked very hard to learn about these on my own and I grew to be more familiar with the working environment and the prodecures in obtaining information.
Kwang: As mentioned by Rahiman, most of our projects involved fundraising events. In Mercy Relief, I was attached to the Corporate Outreach & Resources division which is responsible for managing the organization’s resources through fundraising and outreach activities. This has given me more knowledge on how to interact and maintain relationships with stakeholders - public, institutional partners, donors and volunteers. Interacting with the stakeholders or potential volunteers and handing all the logistics of Mercy Relief was very challenging.
The highlights of my internship with Mercy Relief were being able to participate in their humanitarian training programs with other ‘clansmen’ and volunteers. We had discussions about ways to survey the disaster prone areas and brainstorming for ideas to improve the situation. During my internship here, I have witnessed how Mercy Relief response to the typhoon in Philippines which is known as ‘Typhoon Haiyan’. There were countless of calls regarding about the donation drives for the typhoon Haiyan relief. Overall, it was a satisfying experience and we managed to achieve our goals and objectives for our projects like Typhoon Haiyan Relief.
Rahiman: With this experience, I hope to apply it in my studies as references and share with my peers on how important it is to help the needy. I also learned how important coordination is in an operation.
Kwang: I believe my experience will be useful in my future career, particularly in understanding the importance of coordination and proper management within an organization. My peers who hope to intern with Mercy Relief will be able to understand how the logistics in non-governmental humanitarian organizations are managed and how they raise their funds.
Rahiman: I hope to familiarise myself further in this field and to understand how it could be applied to Brunei.
Kwang: This experience has given invaluable knowledge for me. I hope to understand more on management systems and to explore my potential in business.
We would like to express our gratitude to UBD for giving us this opportunity to experience internship in Singapore and we hope that more students would take up the chance to experience working abroad.
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