HCC Volunteer/Intern Profile
Intern/Student: Research Assistant.
Dates with the HCC: 02-10-17 to 15-12-17
Name of school/college: BSc at the University of Bath.
Programme at school/college: Biomedical Sciences.
How did you find out about the HCC: I found out about HCC through another intern, who inspired me to look further into the organisation. Having read about the work that HCC does throughout the Caribbean region, I was eager to be a part of their initiatives, and gain some experience in the public health field.
Projects and Primary outputs: During my time at HCC, I had the privilege of working in a wide variety of areas. For example, I enhanced my creative skills through managing social media and creating posts and infographics, and have built upon my communication skills through writing and editing articles for their website.
I also helped to organise a workshop in partnership with PAHO, on creating advocacy campaigns for policies against childhood obesity. It was a great opportunity for me to build upon my time management and facilitative skills, and reiterated the importance of sharing ideas, working with multi-sectorial groups, and thinking outside of the box. I also worked on a report on the events and outcomes of the three day workshop. Additionally, I was involved in the early stages of a project on surveillance of the marketing of NCD environmental risk factors in the Caribbean.
I have also enhanced my research skills by gathering and analysing data to create obesity fact sheets for each of the CARICOM countries. Furthermore, I created various useful databases such as a list of schools in Barbados and their locations, a list of women’s organisations across the Caribbean and a list of the ministers in the Caribbean region, and their contact details. One of the highlights of my time at HCC was when I had the privilege of interviewing Professor Alafia Samuels, the first female to be appointed director of the George Alleyne Chronic Disease Research Centre. This was a new and exciting experience for me, and gave me the confidence to carry out similar interviews in the future. Overall my experience with HCC taught me how to carry out many different projects simultaneously, enhanced my ability to work independently and exposed me to what a career in public health would be like.
How was your experience at the HCC: I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at HCC. The hands on and wide range of experience has been invaluable to me, and I was able to learn so much in such a short period of time. Additionally, it has increased my awareness of the public health issues in the Caribbean, and worldwide, and has further developed my desire to create change, particularly within the healthcare sector.
Future plans: I am moving to London at the start of the new year, where I am starting a new internship, and I am also currently applying for graduate schemes in the United Kingdom for a September 2018 start.