What is it like to do an internship at the Klitschko Foundation?

We asked the five interns who joined the foundation's communications department in March. They worked with the foundation's social networks and media, communicated "The Horizons of the Future" and "Democracy Hub" projects, and told the stories of our dreamers and fighters. The girls told about the challenges, unexpected discoveries, and everything that future trainees of the foundation need to know.

About challenges

The value of an internship is that it is a platform for improvement where you can make mistakes, gain experience and learn. For three months, the girls received new personal challenges every day, because every day in the foundation is a chance to test themselves.

Vira Kondratiuk: Klitschko Foundation communicates with a wide audience: teenagers, students, parents, teachers, other charities, donors, and partners. Exploring their interests to create interesting content was my challenge. I spent a lot of time searching for information, trying to better understand the foundation's community and the charity sector in Ukraine and around the world. Another challenge was the development of a new project of the foundation - "Dreamship", with which I went from conceptualization to planning and announcement. I combined this work with communication, teaching, thesis writing, and internships at the university. How did I manage everything? Time management and tremendous support from the managers of the communications department!

Yuliia Kotvytska: The challenge for me was a free schedule and tasks that could suddenly appear because the sphere of communications is about reacting quickly to new circumstances. But I'm happy with this experience, because when the task "falls on my head", I do it faster and better. It was also difficult to combine exams, preparation for new projects of the foundation, and coronavirus, especially on days when the temperature only allowed you to get out of bed and make yourself tea. But our managers have always treated everything with understanding, for which I am very grateful to them!

Anastasiia Shaporenko: While I was an intern at the foundation, I also wrote my thesis, did an internship at the Public Radio, applied for a job, walked 100 km on the Lycian Trail, and jumped with a parachute. Try everything, this experience is unreal!

Anastasiia Seneliuk: The biggest challenge was time management. There was enough time, but it was necessary to stop postponing everything until the last moment. Creative tasks, such as writing articles or posts, often require gradual work with a fresh eye. Therefore, I postponed such tasks to the morning, when I was still full of energy and motivation, and finalized them later.

Solomiia Yaremenko: For me, like most students, the combination of study and internship is the biggest challenge. Here it is worth considering the specifics of my university: I have three exam sessions a year. The spring session fell on an internship. Fortunately, the foundation team constantly supported us, asked if we were comfortable, and went to the meeting. One of the interesting challenges for me was to explore LinkedIn and transcribe texts.

About the most interesting part of the internship

At the weekly meetings, the trainees told each other and the managers of the communication department what they were doing and what tasks they wanted to perform in the future. It was fascinating to watch a tedious task for one light a fire in the eyes of another. For example, Vira did not like to translate texts, and Yulia was happy to take on such tasks. Through new activities, the girls learned more about themselves, determining the further course of the internship and forming an idea of ​​their dream job.

Vira Kondratiuk: I am fascinated by the voices of brands. That the organization is like an individual with character and individuality. We learned to be the confident and inspiring voice of the Klitschko Foundation, and it was extremely interesting. Next, I want to work in the field of brand communications.

Yuliia Kotvytska: The most interesting part was planning my time. I like to make plans and then cross out the work done. When you combine study, volunteering, online internships, and social life, it helps a lot to keep a certain balance and make sure everything is done.

Anastasiia Shaporenko: I have been writing texts since the ninth grade, I became a member of the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine at the age of 18, and for as long as I can remember I love working with texts, especially if they are about people. The mentors listened to my wishes, I interviewed the participants of "Horizons of the Future", "Democracy Hub", wrote about the team of the foundation, created newsletters, announcements, and posts.

About the unexpected

The interns also talked about lessons, experiences, and skills that they did not expect to receive from the internship, but are very much appreciated.

Yuliia Kotvytska: First of all, don’t bite more than you can eat. That is, do not take on more work than you can really do. It all ends with sitting on assignments until night, I checked it. Secondly, don't be afraid to ask questions if something is not clear. Third, making a mistake is okay. There is nothing wrong with that because there is always support from managers and other interns.

Anastasiia Seneliuk: The ability to ask questions was unexpected. In my experience, people are often embarrassed to ask for something too simple, even if it will make the result much better and save time. However, during the internship, I realized that everyone is interested in a well-done task, so no one will refuse help and explanations.

Solomiia Yaremenko: We helped with the launch of the "Impactum" platform, which added many unexpected tasks. I learned to transcribe videos to create subtitles, and it's so difficult (for me). I compiled and analyzed databases, and it was also an interesting experience.

About the skills needed

We also found out what skills the girls find most useful for working in communication and the Klitschko Foundation.

Vira Kondratiuk: The most necessary thing for me was the ability to communicate effectively. Although copywriting and time management were important, establishing a relationship of trust and building trust online was the key to a successful internship. This ranges from internal communication and difficulties to dialogue in comments to a Google document. In the first weeks I didn't want to write to managers "I don't understand", "I don't have time" or "I didn't like the task", but transparent communication helped to build a positive experience the most.

Anastasiia Seneliuk: The ability to google and find creative approaches to finding information was very important. For example, looking for a keyboard shortcut to emphasize a word takes a few minutes, and work without this knowledge would be several times longer. Many tasks required finding opportunities, publishing channels and data about them, so the ability to properly and differently formulate your request became very helpful. For example, when compiling the database of regional media, it was necessary to select different keywords, search for individual districts of regions, see the recommendations of similar groups on Facebook, collect links from sites that aggregate news, and much more.

Solomiia Yaremenko: The most important thing is the ability to shorten and throw out unnecessary sentences. Any activity requires concentration, and communication even more so. So if you plan to try yourself in this area, prepare your patience and add a little peace. And the dish "communicator" is ready!

About further plans

When we asked the girls about their plans after the internship, we were not at all surprised that the answer was the same - to look for new opportunities. In three months, they transformed into confident dreamers and fighters. The trainees learned their strengths, realized what they liked best, and were motivated to move on.

So we are preparing to watch the new achievements of internship graduates. We are sure: it will be interesting!