Over the past years we have said hello and farewell to many interns who chose New Delhi or Cape Town as their internship destination. Our interns’ contributions support our valued host organisations to bring about meaningful change and sustainability in India and South Africa.
What makes the if i could… programme unique is that we tailor-make internships to give you valuable work experience, build your resume, and provide a cultural and life-enriching experience. We give international students a taste of life in another country while they work with organisations that make a difference and address poverty and community development.
“if i could… offers experience that is not just about observation or shadowing; it is a hands-on experience that involves significant responsibilities and a relatively high degree of capacity-building, supervision and support. We have found that carefully targeted and appropriately matched internships are the most beneficial for both our interns and host organisations,” says Director Lindy Briginshaw.
if i could… has a diverse team who are passionate about human development and work with purpose to strengthen and support South Africa’s vibrant development sector. Our team members have travelled to various countries in support of development projects and to study, work and volunteer – so we know what it’s like to live outside your comfort zone and push yourself to the limit professionally. We currently offer two special cities as our internship destinations:
- Cape Town with its fabulous beaches, wildlife, nature and first world amenities is a city with many contradictions. Poverty sits close up next to abundance and wealth providing an opportunity for our interns to work at grassroots level on real issues of poverty and underdevelopment. This city will capture your heart and you will leave, with plans to return again as so many interns fall in love with Cape Town and what this city has to offer.
- The buzzing metropolis of New Delhi, a city rich in culture and tradition with a warm friendly people who will greet you with Namaste and welcome you into their homes. Yet this city too has many contradictions and even though India has a booming economy many citizens remain immersed in poverty and experience dire living conditions and social issues. A visit to New Delhi will be life-changing.
So if you are a student of development and a lover of life and travel, and have a spirit of volunteerism and a compassion for your fellow man and helping make the world a better place, then intern in New Delhi or Cape Town and make a difference.
In the midst of challenging work days, we also know it’s important to explore and relax in your host country! For this reason, if i could… offers a wide variety of relaxation and cultural activities. We provide language classes, in either isiXhosa or Hindi, and coordinate loads of fun and culturally relevant intern outings to show you around both cities. Our language classes are designed to help you get around Cape Town New Delhi and interact better within your host organisation. A great opportunity for interns to get to know each other and the South African and Indian communities better, these casual lessons enhance the value of cultural exchange in our internship programme.
Intern outings are organised for both staff and interns, so while we are exploring Cape Town and New Delhi we also get to know each other and offer you advice about your internship and future career. Some of our favourite intern outings In Cape Town include: wine-tasting, visits to Cape Town’s many museums, a Sunday visit to Mzoli’s, a trip up Table Mountain and last but not least, a ferry ride to the historic Robben Island (where South Africa’s first black president Nelson Mandela was imprisoned). While you intern in New Delhi, a visit to the Red Fort is not to be missed as are guided tours in Chandi Chowk, the unusual Bird Hospital and lunch at Moti Mahal. Also take a day trip to Agra and visit the iconic Taj Mahal.
Once you complete your internship you have the opportunity to become an if i could… Ambassador and help spread the word about our programme when you return home.
One of our past interns, Camille, shared this before we said goodbye, “I am returning home knowing that I have contributed meaningfully to the development sector, while also building my resume and gaining valuable work experience that will hopefully propel me into a long-term career that makes a difference.”