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Rewilding the world with Marissa’s sustainability internship in Vietnam

ABROADER October 30, 2022 7 minute read

You love nature and are willing to support the sustainability effort? So let’s find “the one” internship for you in this blog!

Do you love nature and are concerned about biodiversity protection? So a sustainability internship is specially made for you. This summer, we welcomed our friend – Marissa Hope Mejia to intern at Wildact – an NGO that focuses on the science-based conservation of threatened species and ecosystems. Follow us to learn more about what an internship at a sustainable organization in Vietnam is like!

A sustainability internship is not that boring!

Sustainable organizations are not just environmentally friendly but also make sure to create an environment where people can do sustainable work. And Wildact is a place like that. There at Wildact, they organize education, community conservation, and women empowerment in conservation programs. All are for a mission to inspire, motivate, and empower society and individuals to engage in nature protection. There, Marissa works as a Communication and Fundraising intern to support their actions and campaigns.

What she did

As an eco-lover, Marissa is a member of Tigers Go Green – The Princeton University Office of Sustainability. It is where she and her friends devote themselves to cultivating an ethos of sustainability at Princeton that inspires action at all scales in service to humanity and the world. And her work at Wildact has many things in common, which helps her a lot.

Her daily tasks are creating media publications used for education programs and promoting conservation efforts that protect nature in Vietnam. Besides, working hard on a project about a social psychological intervention targeting the illegal trade of wild songbirds in Vietnam.

Jumping into the nature

Working at a sustainable organization is not about just doing tired and tedious research or paperwork. But they can participate in hands-on tasks and go straight to practical things. During two-month working at Wildact, Marissa stood a chance to visit some natural reserves and organizations for practical experience named as Bear Sanctuary Ninh Binh, Endangered primate rescue center, Turtle rescue center, and Save Vietnam’s wildlife. There, she could see adorable animals that had been successfully rescued from being illegally farmed and trafficked across Vietnam. These helped her see through and understand more about the meaningful things she was doing and the effort to protect the nature of these organizations. Also, a practical viewpoint did support her in bettering her work and study.

What she gained

As she shared with us “My team has been very supportive of some situations that have arisen. These are all things that I have taught myself how to and learned to do in the past. And I am always learning more with these, so doing this work for WildAct has provided me with the opportunity to continue to explore and learn more about my own.”

This two-month sustainability internship at Wildact has allowed her to devote herself to creating opportunities for individuals and communities to be actively involved in the management of natural resources. And also she could address the root causes of biodiversity loss: poverty, lack of education, and gender inequality.

Besides, a sustainability internship in Vietnam gave her the chance to travel to many famous destinations named as Ba Vi – Ha Noi, Ha Long, Da Nang, Hoi An. All these things made her fall more in love with nature, cuisine, and people there.

How about her life in Hanoi? Enthusiastic days with friends wandering around the beautiful city, from a summer vintage fair, music fest, silk village to beer festival. Besides she got the chance to enjoy the delightful cuisine there and different vegetarian food. Also, dived into the chaotic traffic that she had never seen before. Though there were “unstable” things happening while living in a totally different country, all have become memories to remind her of vivid, young, and dynamic summer days.

In the past, we intend to give our interns a chance to work and contribute to the community’s efforts. Therefore ABROADER has supported our best to organize internships for students coming to sustainable organizations to work at. Some of our partners working in this field are Wildact, GreenViet, Zerowaste Vietnam, SolarBK, etc. Together with these partners, our interns have meaningful and exciting responsibilities to build up their skills and contribute to sustainable efforts by joining in different hands-on tasks like green industrial park design, compiling a photo book that describes changes in farmers’ behavior after seeing the benefits of living harmoniously, etc. Sounds so interesting!

Acknowledging these worthwhile contributions, we decide to engage more and more in raising awareness of protecting our ecosystem, together with our partners. And that’s the reason for the advent of the Vietnam Tropica program.

Vietnam Tropica, where we can observe…

The sustainable development efforts…

We believe that organizations like sanctuaries, rescue centers, and conservative parks need more funding and support to be able to rescue and care for our precious ecosystem properly. If you want to root for these meaningful efforts but you can not spend 2-3 months for a sustainability internship, Vietnam Tropica will be your best choice!
So what can you expect in this new program?

  • Learning about sustainable development and how climate change affects Vietnam through the guest lectures on Vietnam’s economy and sustainable development
  • Experience ongoing initiatives of international and local companies in sustainable development through company visits. For example, NGOs, Pioneering renewable Energy companies, and Companies with Corporate Social Responsibilities projects.
  • Witnessing the effect of climate change in the Mekong Delta region.
  • Being inspired about social responsibility, participating in hands-on actions for the future with “Startup day”.

…in the beauty of Vietnam nature!

Not just studying and company visiting but diving into the majestic and magnificent nature of Southern Vietnam! On the first couple of days, you have the chance to learn about Vietnam’s society, economy, and politics – the three pillars of sustainability through the Ho Chi Minh city tour. The tour is a mixture of culture, history, and lifestyle. You can visit different historical places such as Cathedral, Post office, Local market, Central park, Reunification palace, and traditional food, drink to try, and traditional games with local Vietnamese students. Also, welcome a really different new year in Vietnam!

Then, spend 1 day exploring Can Gio Mangrove Biosphere Reserve. It’s the mangrove forest acts as the green lung of HCM city. Where you have a chance to visit the center for environmental education. Besides visiting the Shrimp farm, travel by boat through the mangrove forest, and join hands to make the “lung” stronger by planting trees in the forest.

You can not miss a trip to Mekong Delta. It’s the region heavily affected by climate change. This fact threatens the food security of the world as this is one of the regions producing rice for the global population. Besides, visiting sluice gates that prevent salinity in the Mekong tributary and learning more about the life on boats of the local people with the floating market, handicraft villages, and fruit gardens.

Last but not least, the most special and worth-visiting place in this program is Bidoup National Park. It is the biodiversity home of 13.000 different species of animals and trees that coexist together, to serve the reserving purpose of artificial impact kept at a minimal level to ensure a unique travel experience. There you will spend 4 days on a tropical trekking trip. The trail will provide you with knowledge about the national park, and the culture of the hill tribe people. Meanwhile visiting waterfalls and enjoying the beautiful scenery of the jungle.

Where to find the opportunity for yourself?

A 10% discount for early birds is coming to an end in less than 15 days. Apply now right at this link.

Sustainability and “mini” Sustainability Internship – Vietnam Tropica are both available. Hope to see you soon in Vietnam!

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