Learning Journey: A passion for learning

Date: July 31, 2016
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“You just need to have a passion for learning,” Claudia Rakotonirina

Claudia Rakotonirina_Madagascar program officer_001Time spent at Gender Links (GL) is always an opportunity to learn and to share. 2015 was a memorable year for me both at a professional and personal level.

 As a programme officer of GL Madagascar, my tasks at the office are varied but complementary including overall planning, reporting, internal and external communication. In my line of work I have the privilege to interact with people from different backgrounds, different institutions, trainers, councils, and media professionals. These interactions help my interpersonal skills and professional competencies. My learning journey at GL began in 2011 when I was still an intern. It is almost five years now working for GL and I feel blessed and lucky to be part of such an organisation. It has been a place of growth and I have gained invaluable knowledge.

Assisting the country manager in fund raising helped me to sharpen my writing and analytical skills as I contributed in project applications. At first, it all seemed so complex but when I tried and went step by step, it became doable. All this taught me to uphold the spirit of hard work and achieve the best regardless of issues that may be encountered along the way. Writing also helped me to be creative and multidimensional.

Working with different monitoring and evaluation tools also helped me to increase my knowledge and get used to using complex and innovative systems of quantitative and qualitative studies. I still admire the way GL is persevering in improving its monitoring and evaluation system and pulls out all the stops to make it work in all offices.

At the personal level, I have also grown. I faced many challenges.  After my maternity leave, I missed being with my baby and struggled to find the Bongatsara council_Madagascar_RZ_07102015 _3_right person to look after him when I was at work. However, becoming a mother has changed me and I have become more responsible, attentive and able to multitask, as a mother, wife and working woman.  Having to deal with different issues at the same time is stressful. Thanks to my family and colleagues who were always there to support me, I have become a happy mother who manages to balance my private and professional life.

At GL you get to learn new things or learn to do old things in a new way. You just have to have a passion for learning. GL is indeed a place where you can grow. I am looking forward to continuing on this journey with GL.

Written by Claudia Rakotonirina, Gender Links, Madagascar, programme officer