Gjithe te mirat all'Alba

12/02/2016, Vlore, Albania, Isabella writes:

The heart of the matter - Conclusions

During the 10 month internship spent at Vlora's Local Economic Development Agency, I learnt what it means to work in international cooperation. This has been for me a wonderful opportunity because I was finally able test and put in practice my skills in the field chosen during my studies, and because I experienced a local reality unique for its genesis and development. From a technical standpoint, after an initial phase of integration, during which I started to understand the functioning and objectives of the organization, I provided assistance during the events and offered support to the activities. On several occasions, in fact, I was able to participate in conferences and meetings, observing the dynamics of coordination and the development of international cooperation projects. Gradually, I got more practice in project design, researching information about contexts and potential beneficiaries, and consulting with my colleagues. On some occasions I was able to examine in depth projects already in progress or at their final stage, writing reports and other documents. These projects allowed me to come into contact with various types of local actors, from institutions to citizens, as well as entrepreneurs or more vulnerable groups in society.

However, the biggest change occurred in me and consisted of a greater awareness and the ability to handle practical situations as well as drawing up theoretical proposals. As part of the two projects of economic empowerment of women in rural areas, I witnessed the different stages of implementation and made my contribution both in a practical way, teaching how to make soaps, and on a theoretical level, planning activities and putting together the basis of an entrepreneurial project at a group level, which I hope will have the strength and support to move forward. Personally, I gained some of the biggest satisfactions and teachings, as well as having improved the interpretation of gestures and behaviours of a different culture. The transmission of knowledge has flowed despite the language barriers, although with some regrets. On the other hand, without losing sight of a wider perspective for both the Agency and the territory, I participated in the preparation of project proposals involving international players, which have been evaluated by financial institutions. This task became a recurring challenge and has expanded my vision on the possibilities for cooperation and innovation, when we deal with project writing.

In conclusion, I want to thank those colleagues who welcomed and supported me every day, as well as KIP and the Legislative Assembly of Emilia Romagna, which have allowed me to carry out this experience.


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