Haady Taslim: Here to make a positive contribution - not to judge
Academic pursuit: Masters Degree in Public Policy at the University of Chicago, USA
Field posting: Tamil Nadu
Field subject: Early childhood and infant feeding practices
Haady Taslim, a 24-year-old intern, is pursuing a Masters Degree in Public Policy at the University of Chicago, and knew that India is a land where there is always a buzz.
“Let me tell you, if I get the time, I am going to see a few Bollywood movies in the theatre even though people might advise me against it,” he says. Top priority for Haady, however, is to work in India as a UNICEF intern.
"I am here to make a positive contribution, not to judge or impose our views”“I have already learnt that India’s growth experience is similar to that of other countries in the world. During the orientation programme we learnt about decentralization and how one can use India as a model for other countries” he says.
Going to the interiors of Tamil Nadu is something Haady cannot wait for. He will be working on early childhood and infant feeding practices. He knows the cultural and language barriers are something which he has to overcome in order to interact with the people at a comfortable level.
But ask him about what exactly he expects to do, and he has the answers: I am here to make a positive contribution, not to judge or impose our views,” he says. “I would like to tell the people how UNICEF can best make an impact on their lives.” Like many other interns, Haady is very keen to return to India. “I know we are here as interns. But I would have no hesitation in coming back to work in India after completing my education.”
Marianne Wouda: On-field is the best experience
Resident of: The Netherlands
Academic pursuit: Masters in Social Psychology,The Netherlands
Field posting: Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
Field subject: Child labour
Twenty-six-year-old Marianne hails from Groningen in Holland. She was not even sure if she would make it as an intern simply because she got her recommendation letters at the last minute.
After studying Masters in Social Psychology, Marianne moved to Dublin. “I am still unemployed,” she says, and thinks the chance to visit India has come at a great time. She has dealt with development subjects and has an “overall picture of India.”
"I think getting to study child labour will be very enriching. I have read books on these subjects, but what one does on the field will be the real stuff” But going to the field and doing hard work is what she finds a real challenge. “I will be going to Hyderabad to work on case studies. I think getting to study child labour will be very enriching. I have read books on these subjects, but what one does on the field will be the real stuff,” she says.
Marianne is honest when she says she does not know much about child labour. “I think as an intern working with UNICEF and having a Masters degree, I can learn a lot. This experience will help both me and the UNICEF as I could give them more inputs and fresh ideas,” says
Like many others from abroad, Marianne is aware that the heat in Hyderabad and local conditions will pose huge challenges to her. “I think I just have to be ready for all this. It has taken some effort to get here,” she says.
She has already familiarized herself with the group she is going to be working with. “Maybe when I am back in New Delhi after ten weeks, I can tell you a lot more.”