Posted October 31st, 2012 by Leah in Paris, France
I am interning for 8 weeks at an NGO called EGAM (European Grassroots Antiracist Movement). The people I work with are all very nice and welcoming and are understanding of my difficulties with French. EGAM started as a part of the French NGO SOS Racisme, which fights racism in France. It had become clear that there wasn’t really an organization of that type working together with similar organizations in other European countries and that there was a need for an organization to help coordinate the activities of these organizations in Europe, so EGAM was created. Even though EGAM is a separate organization, they still share office space with SOS Racisme, so I have been able to see a lot of what they do as well. So far, I have been doing a lot of work on the computer, such as making spreadsheets of contacts. One thing I had to do a couple weeks ago was search for all of the articles about Roma Pride, the event organized by EGAM throughout Europe on October 7th to protest the discrimination of Roms (Gypsies) in Europe. Not only did I have to find the articles in the French press, I had to find them in other languages as well. I used some Google translate for that. It was kind of difficult, especially with languages like Polish and Bulgarian. But it was interesting to notice how much easier it was to find articles in Italian for example, because of the similarities between the languages. More recently, I have been assigned to find relevant news articles for EGAM’s weekly newsletter. I look for articles (in French) concerning Europe-wide news that relates to EGAM’s work. I then write a summary of the articles to place in the newsletter along with photos and links to the original articles.