Goodbye from the Non-Profit Support Intern

Hey Villagers,

This is the last week of my internship. Next week I will head back to school to finish my last year of college. I can’t believe summer has gone by so fast. My time working as a Non-Profit Support Intern has become part of my summer this year, and I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to learn how to manage aspects of a fair trade organization and also contribute to Ten Thousand Villages.

IMG_5413It’s pleasant to see Ten Thousand Villages staff and volunteers with their smiling faces every time I come to work. And they are always there to help me get familiar with new things!

During the internship, I’ve been doing all kinds of things to support this organization and to get both a big picture and details of how it works.

I really enjoyed my first week here! I got to know how Ten Thousand Villages helps new volunteers get familiar with the work step by step. In the beginning there were a lot of info and training.

Every week I was trying to get more experience in the actual day-to-day operations of the store – helping to unpack and check in shipments, put out newIMG_6113 product, and tidy up the store. The product display guide is great! Besides, reading over the artisan stories for my favorite products and watching new item videos made me feel happy for artisans. By being in long-term trading relationships with Ten Thousand Villages they can bring beauty and art creativity into their handcrafted items while receiving a fair price for their work with dignity to live a life of quality.

While creating a database of how our volunteers found out about us, I was surprised to learn in the past few years how many and how diverse our volunteers have been. Some of our volunteers were teenagers. Some were born in 1960s. Some have even been volunteering since 2005. Dear lovely volunteers, thank you for your dedication to making the world a fair place. It was my first time to plan the monthly volunteer appreciation event. Hope you all enjoyed last weekend’s Social Hour at the Ice Cream Festival if you attended!

When checking the Wire for interesting news, I was glad to see the news that in the Building Success Brick by Brick project, the Austin store received a brick for having monthly retail sales greater than 5% compared to the prior year in June and July.  Congrats!

I have really enjoyed helping with the planning, preparing and promoting of various fair trade events. In the coming months, we will have World Chocolate Day, Elephant Appreciation Day, and One Reason Why Fair Trade Art Show. I had an enjoyable eve照片ning participating in the “arty party” to decide and price the 2013 One Reason Why fair trade art collection. These fair trade pieces are truly amazing works of fine art! Make sure to visit the store on Sunday, September 8th, World Chocolate Day,  when our volunteers will bring in homemade fair trade chocolate recipes. Come in the store to taste the samples and vote on your favorite that day!

It has been such a wonderful experience interning at Ten Thousand Villages! There’s always a lot for me to learn, especially in a country which is very different from China.

In the near future after graduation from UT, I am planning to go to graduate school for the master of accounting program in the United States. I hope the development of advanced accounting skills along with other business skills will lay a strong foundation for my future career in business to have a positive impact on the world as Ten Thousand Villages does.

Goodbye, Villagers. Thank you all for making my summer great!