It’s officially been one month since I began my internship at KK intl. this summer.
I did my best to arrive with no expectations, but to be honest, I was incredibly excited. I had been following Krochet Kids intl. for awhile, and I could sense that there was a unique joy and passion driving the organization. I have always been intrigued by the idea of using business for social good, but it was not until this past year that I decided I wanted to personally work at an organization dedicated to using its resources to help others. In addition, I was born and raised in Georgia and have never been farther west than Arkansas, so I was also extremely excited to experience a California summer, meet the Pacific Ocean, and eat at the famous In-N-Out burger. However, even with secretly big expectations for the summer, I was not prepared for what I was about to step into: a KK intl. internship exceeded (and continues to exceed!) my elevated expectations. There are so many reasons why interning for this organization is great, but to spare you excessive scrolling, I’ve narrowed it down to the top reasons to intern at Krochet Kids intl.:
1. Freedom & Responsibility: One of my favorite aspects of the intern program is the depth of responsibility and freedom we are given within our specific roles. This is not your classic fetch-coffee-and-run-errands kind of internship; it’s very hands-on and you gain valuable professional experience within your specific role. Through the hiring process, we were chosen based upon our specific talents and interests, then paired with a staffer who teaches us how to perform our roles and assigns us tasks to complete. They are there to ensure that we are learning as much as possible during our term here at Krochet Kids intl., whether it’s how to utilize Photoshop for graphic design, how to prepare products for meetings with retailers, or how to organize new shipments from our projects in Uganda and Peru.
2. Evidence of Impact: Whether it’s diving into your specific role at our HQ in Costa Mesa, overseeing production or working in photojournalism at our projects in Uganda and Peru, or setting up booths and sharing the KK intl. story across the nation as a festival rep, it’s rewarding to see our work as interns play a crucial role in the operations of the organization and in the larger mission of empowering women to rise above poverty. For example, as one of the social media interns, I get to read through all the thank you notes that are written to the women in our empowerment projects. It’s been such a joy to discover thank you notes written by supporters from all over the world! Even my friends and family have written their own “thank you’s”, and I always enjoy reading thank you notes written specifically by supporters who met our road team interns at a festival this summer. It’s these moments where we get to personally engage with someone, share the KK intl. story for the first time, and witness them understanding the depth and uniqueness of our mission to fully empower women to an independent future that make this summer worth it. It’s also because of these moments that KK intl. is able to grow and thrive and make a tangible difference in the lives of our beneficiaries.
3. Investment in Personal Growth: Beyond just giving us the tools to grow in our professional lives, the intern program is equally focused on giving us the tools to grow us in our personal lives. We each take interactive personality tests to discover our individual strengths and how to apply them, we share our personal stories (called “life maps”) with one another, and we participate in a book club where we dive into readings that are relevant to our work here at HQ. This balance between personal and professional has been key to my growth as an individual and I am more confident in my ability to make a difference during my time here at KK intl. and beyond.
4. Interpersonal Relationships: One of the best parts of the internship is the relationships we build with the KK intl. staff members and one another. We are blessed to be surrounded by a group of advocates who are not only incredibly talented at what they do, but who are also passionate about empowering others towards a sustainable future, including us! Staff members dedicate time to personally answer our questions and invest in our growth, and their words of encouragement have inspired us to work harder and dream bigger. For instance, every Tuesday a different staff member takes all the interns out to lunch. During one Tuesday lunch, we were able to talk with one of the co-founders, Travis, about the early beginning of Krochet Kids intl. and the various challenges and victories they experienced. As someone who would love to start a non-profit or social enterprise some day, it was such a beneficial experience to hear the story firsthand and learn the obstacles that a new organization faces when it’s moving from idea to a reality.
5. Opportunities are Endless: Because we are located in the United States, Uganda, and Peru, you can choose how you make an impact, whether that’s working behind the scenes at HQ, traveling on the road as a Summer Festival Rep, or interacting directly with the beneficiaries as an International Production Assistant or Photojournalism Assistant. For those who are interested in traveling, our international and road team internships are particularly special because you are provided with ample opportunities to meet other people interested and passionate about not only the organization, but making a difference. I know that many of our interns walk away with powerful relationships and stories of change that impact them for a lifetime. However, in every internship opportunity, we are encouraged to keep dreaming and to recognize our innate capability to make a positive difference.
Interning with KK intl. has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. If you are interested in becoming a KK intl. intern, fill out an application here!