High School: St Dominic’s Chishawasha High School Zimbabwe
Major: Biology with concentration in Biochemistry on the Premed track
Activities: Bryn Mawr African and Caribbean Students Organization, Pre-health club, Public Health club, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship. Admissions tour guide and ambassador
Interests: Africana studies, learning new cultures, reading, travel
Internship: HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness among youths. Jesuit AIDS Project, Harare Zimbabwe
Jesuit AIDS Project is a youth focused organization whose mission is to promote an HIV AIDS free generation by empowering youths between the ages of 12-29 in schools, communities, parishes and orphan institutions to avoid STI’s and HIV infections and to be responsible members of society. The organization envisions an empowered generation of young people free from HIV and AIDS.
As an intern with JAP I got the opportunity to be part of its programs and activities. I was assigned three centers that I was responsible for. I would go for weekly Youth Against AIDS club meetings. I was the Youth Program Facilitator and would see that activities are done accordingly. I would assist with planning of shows, dramas, and act as a liaison for the club to school administrators. I was also assigned a children’s home that we would visit as a team and spend the afternoons with the children doing self-awareness and confidence building workshops. The organization is expanding so in that light I managed to establish another Youth Against AIDS Club site at Chiedza Child Care center. Feedback to the organization was required on a weekly basis to my supervisor and to the monitoring and evaluation department of the organization. This I learnt was something really crucial for effective and efficient task delivery.
As an intern I also experience the day to day running of a non-profit. Additional responsibility was writing articles for the website, attending meetings as a representative, staff development workshops, planning and implementation workshops among others. Another part of the internship gave me the opportunity to volunteer at a private clinic that gave free medication and health care to AIDS patients. I valued this a lot as I met and talked to the patients and learnt their experiences with stigma and economic hardship. It made the fight for prevention real and worth the while, and the exposure to primary health care was interesting.
The whole experience was very enlightening and I developed and improved my writing skills, confidence, self-awareness and professional etiquette. I enjoyed working with youths and the staff was very supportive and understanding.