A NEW PERSPECTIVE ON MINING THANKS TO CATAPA
(Text by student Kasper Belmans – @KasperBelmans)
As last year student of Intercultural Relations Management I decided for a bachelor thesis in which I could get into the culture of a certain region of the world. Therefore I combined classes about Latin America in the banaba Intercultural Management with a fascinating internship project, linked to Latin America.
This is how this Intercultural Relations Management student got a Catapista for three days in the week from October on!
‘Cata-what?!’, are you probably thinking now. Catapista. This is the name of the staff of the volunteer organisation Catapa.
ONE DAY AT THE INTERNSHIP AND ALREADY AT THE WEEKEND!
Maybe you are wondering what exactly an internship project is? Well…Because I had chosen the area Latin America I got the task to look for an organisation which is working with/for Latin America. I had to convince the organisation myself to accept me as a temporal employee. By working a while with the organisation I should on-the-job learn more about the area that matters so much to me.
And it worked! I found and convinced the organisation Catapa!
Also I didn’t know initially what Catapa exactly stands for. I only knew that they were focussing on mining in Latin-America. For this reason their education weekend at the end of my first internship week came perfect for me.
This education weekend is part of their ‘Train the Trainers’ program, a training program for their own volunteers. By means of lectures and workshops I got an insight during this weekend into the problems related to mining. It was also the perfect way to meet my colleagues.
A second weekend at the end of my internship was the perfect conclusion.
MY ROLE AT CATAPA?
I worked mainly on a task about alternative economies. Besides that I posted information on their social media from time to time and I got translation tasks for their website. Translating from and into Dutch, English and Spanish was perfect to practise these languages.
Commuting to Ghent was not always evident (??), but I’m glad I didn’t let it discourage me. This was an amazing experience!