Our Former Interns and Volunteers
WFTO values the role of interns and volunteers in achieving our goals and mission. Interns assist our daily operation, both virtually and on site at our office in Culemborg, Netherlands. Our interns and volunteers come from many different regions and nationalities, providing global perspective to WFTO and Fair Trade. They bring in fresh, new ideas to our operation. In return, they receive excellent professional training and knowledge. We invite you to meet our former interns and volunteers:
Elisa Agosti (Italy), Communications Intern
“I am a Master’s student in Sustainable Development. Writing, social justice, and the environment are my greatest passions. At WFTO I combined the three of them, while giving my contribution to the Fair Trade cause.
I enjoyed gathering information about our amazing members, writing articles for the newsletter and preparing social media contents about Fair Trade Organisations. In May 2015 I had the chance to take part in the 13th Biennial WFTO Conference in Milan, and to meet some members personally. During the conference I attended inspiring workshops, and discovered how much WFTO members care about the Fair Trade family.
This internship at the WFTO Global Office helped me understand the functioning of an international NGO and see how its communications department works. I hope to apply the skills I gained at WFTO in my future job and to be a Fair Trade ambassador wherever I go. I will try to raise awareness about the 10 principles of Fair Trade in every person I will meet on the way.”
Daniela Ignatova (Bulgaria), Social Media Volunteer - Team Leader
"I’m a Social Media and Communications professional with solid educational background in the field. However, I constantly seek for challenging projects related to human rights, environmental issues and social justice where I can apply and help out with my skills and knowledge. At WFTO, I gained the unique opportunity to apply my abilities for a fair cause. Working for WFTO social media channels was a satisfying job that truly pays well in terms of how you can inspire people to think differently and the experience I got. During that time, I had the chance to work on many cases and campaigns some of which are Women for Change, World Fair Trade Day and World Fair Trade Week. In addition to the interesting tasks, I worked virtually with a great team from USA and Europe. I’m fascinated by what WFTO’s doing for so many marginalised groups all over the world. Thanks to our fruitful collaboration now I know what lies behind Fair Trade and that it’s really helping people have a better life. I hope my work for Fair Trade hasn’t finished but until new opportunities come out I’ll continue to be a true Fair Trade supporter and Agent for Change."
Amber Vignieri (USA), Social Media Online Intern
“Prior to my Communications Internship with the World Fair Trade Organization, I was a student at Loyola University Chicago majoring in Environmental Studies. During my study abroad experience in Rome, I took a spring break trip to Amsterdam where I first heard about WFTO. Their mission immediately captured my interest; I have always been interested in ethical fashion, human rights, and fair labor standards, and thought that getting involved with the organization would help me to educate myself further about these issues as well as to gain exposure to organizations and businesses in the Fair Trade market.
While my expectations were certainly fulfilled, I received much more than I originally hoped from my internship. I was allowed to create social media daily for an international audience that covered a wide variety of issues and encouraged me to constantly do in-depth research about current events related to sustainability, gender equality, fair wages, and international labor standards. My internship also exposed me to hundreds of profitable WFTO member businesses from whom I can now turn to as alternatives for certain purchases.
I also thoroughly enjoyed working remotely from the United States with a team of international interns and staff. This gave me excellent experience in coordinating schedules, working under a complex media posting calendar, and communicating effectively via email, Skype, Facebook, etc.
Although my internship has come to an end, I will take the skills, knowledge, and experience with me wherever I go in my future career. I am beginning a full-time job at an environmental non-profit where I will be working on sustainability communications. I am certain that in this position my experience from my WFTO internship will be invaluable!”
Benjamin Conard (USA), Social Media Online Intern
"I am a business student with a passion for Fair Trade and its ability to impact producers from worlds apart. I have experience wearing many hats in the Fair Trade movement. As a campaigner, I work nationally in the USA as the Student Chair on the Steering Committee for Fair Trade Colleges & Universities and I started a Fair Trade Club and campaign on my university campus. I work in a Fair Trade retail store where I sell product directly to consumers and share the stories of artisans from around the world. I have experience in a Fair Trade wholesale business and took a trip to origin visiting Fair Trade workshops in India. And now, having worked with the WFTO, I have international experience with a Fair Trade membership and labeling organization. I am excited to use the communication skills I learned working with the WFTO to spread the Fair Trade message even further and perhaps even start my own business."
Natalia Báez (Mexico), Communications Intern
“After studying a Master in International Relations and International Organisation at the University of Groningen in The Netherlands, I decided to explore new grounds and learn more about Fair Trade by working with WFTO. I had always been interested in human rights and justice related issues, reasons why their 10 Fair Trade Principles inspired me to see how this noble organisation works to improve the livelihoods of disadvantaged producers by addressing the injustices in the supply chain. As a Communications Assistant my main tasks included creating social media and website content, as well as the production of the WFTO monthly newsletter. I was also very lucky to get the opportunity to attend two Fair Trade fairs in Germany. The first one was “Fair Trade and Friends” in Dortmund, where I got the chance to meet many of the Latin American WFTO members. The second fair I attended was “Ambiente 2015” in Frankfurt. This was the best culminating experience for my internship. I gained insight into what the preparation for and of such an event entails, as well as the opportunity to get to know so many WFTO members and producers from across the world and see how Fair Trade is not only a way of doing Trade but a way of life for them. Today, I am temporarily working in the Membership and Monitoring division of the WFTO Global office together with the GS Manager Tamara Cobussen. I am grateful for this amazing learning experience and hope to keep contributing to the Fair Trade Movement in the future.”
Katie Ramsbottom (New Zealand), Communications Intern
Nina Spooren (Belgium), Secretariat Support Intern
Marta Luzes (Portugal), Social Media Online Intern
Tommi Hatinen (Finland), Secretariat Support Intern
Veronica Stasio (Italy), Communications Intern (online)
Alexandra Doughty (Australia), Volunteer Graphic Designer
"I am a Creative Design and Marketing professional passionate about Fair Trade handicrafts and products of cultural significance. After graduating from RMIT University located in Melbourne, Australia in 2005 with a Bachelor of Design with a focus on Interiors, I continued to work in the Interior home décor field for a number of leading Australian furniture and décor brands. In 2011, after almost six years of working within the commercial marketing and design field, I moved to Vietnam to pursue a community development opportunity assisting local handicraft and coffee producers in the areas of Product Development and Brand Management. It was in Vietnam where my passion and understanding of Fair Trade principals grew and since leaving Vietnam I have continued to pursue this interest with my involvement at the WFTO headquarters. I am particularly passionate about the role design has in expressing cultural identity: expression, identity, and empowerment through design. As a consultant I hope to connect with handicraft production groups in developing countries to assist them in product development, marketing, and online strategies to promote Fair Trade products, as well as their culture to a broader market both locally and internationally."
Sylvaine Plan (France), Communications Intern (online)
Tope Osho (UK), Communications Intern (online)
Giulia Bertoluzzi (Italy), Administration Intern
Lou Egret (France), General Membership Services Intern
Maria Jose Arias (Colombia), Administrative Intern