IYIP Blog Series: Lisa D’Alimonte, Governance Officer

As always, time is flying by! I am now in the middle of my 4th work week here in Zanzibar, Tanzania and things are going much better than I had anticipated! When I departed Toronto on March 21st after one week of training with YCI and CIL (Centre for Intercultural Learning), I have to admit, I was feeling a little in the dark about my job responsibilities with our partner organization ZANGOC (Zanzibar NGO Cluster for HIV/AIDS Prevention, Control and Sustainable Development).

Outside the ZANGOC office

It feels like in the past week and a half the flood doors have opened and I now see my role as the Governance Officer much more clearly! After asking some probing questions to the right people within ZANGOC, I have been able to find out some much needed structural information about the organization which will be helpful to me and to YCI! For example, I found about details about the General Assembly, the Steering Committee and the Executive Committee, who reports what to whom and when and how members of each committee are elected and when these elections are held! It’s all very interesting actually and I’m now in the process of creating a governing document with all of these roles and responsibilities written…in English! I know that there is a constitution for ZANGOC, but I also know that it’s entirely in Swahili and having someone translate it word for word is just not going to happen! Plus it’s helpful for me to work through the structure and see how everything interrelates.

My office space

Last week Bryan Cox, the Executive Director of YCI, visited us in Zanzibar, and was pleased with the amount of information that I have been able to collect.  His comments gave me the feeling that I am headed in the right direction with ZANGOC, and that I have actually accomplished a fair amount of work in 3 weeks!

On a final note for this entry, I would like to say some goodbyes and hellos within the YCI family! In Tanzania we are saying goodbye to Donald Taylor, the Country Manager (CM) for the past 11 months, as he moves to his new role as CM with YCI in Ghana. As his replacement we are excited to have Cheryl Turner join us in Dar es Salaam as the new CM. Cheryl has already been helpful in assisting my direction with ZANGOC so I look forward to working with her more over the next 7 months!

 – Lisa D’Alimonte, IYIP Intern, Tanzania 2011

To read more about Lisa’s experiences in Zanzibar, check out her blog: Where in the World is Lisa?

For more International Youth Internship Program (IYIP) blogs, check out our IYIP section.

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