(Gurugram) “I am currently working at Internshala and I am managing an initiative focussed on internships for women who are restarting their career. We are trying to help women who had a break in their career, or who have not yet got a chance to start their career after graduation. Now, the question is “Why an internship?” and “Why not a job upfront?”. There are various reasons why women often hesitate to go back to the work force after a break. It could be that they lack industry relevant skills or may lack confidence. Internships provide flexible working options like work from home or part-time work. Also, an internship is a short-term engagement with a company. The women can go and work for a company for a couple of months and realise for themselves whether they are able to balance work and family.
The idea came around last year during a discussion with my mentor. At first, I couldn’t really relate to the idea because we had always focussed on providing internships to currently enrolled students. Later, I researched and had the chance to speak to many women who had quit their jobs because of marriage or maternity. It was then that I felt emotionally connected with this initiative. I got an opportunity to hear straight from horse’s mouth, the troubles these women were facing.
For instance, I called up a certain lady as part of a survey. After asking few preliminary questions, I asked her if she was currently working, and she said, “No”. I asked “Do you want to work?”. Her response was that she needed to ask her husband. Later, she shared her story about how she had graduated couple of years back, and she had gotten married. Now, while she is very willing to work, her husband doesn’t allow her to do so and wants that she should take care of the family. Instances like these really trigger something inside me. Work-life is not just about career or earning money or independence, it is more about feeling good about yourself. Out of the 80 women that I called as a part of the survey, the majority of women said they would be ready to work on anything in any area.
I was born and brought up in Bhopal. My parents have always emphasised that career is very important and that I should do whatever I feel is right for me. They guide me but they have never imposed their ideas on me. I personally feel very blessed with the people that I have around. I often encounter emotional turbulence in my life due to one reason or another. It is very fortunate that there are people who are there to boost my confidence and motivate me to not give up.”
(Stories from Internshala: https://internshala.com)