Mrs. Retina Rongpipi Intern from Karbi Human Rights Watch in North-east India

I am Retina Rongpipi and I belong to Karbi Indigenous people from the state of Assam, Northeast India. I am an active member of Karbi Human Rights Watch (KHRW), a human rights organisation based in Diphu, Karbi Anglong, an Autonomous district of Assam.  I have been associated with the organisation since 2012. During these years I have been shouldered with responsibilities of my organisation in various capacities, right from Associate Finance Co-Ordinator in 2013 to Gender Cell in-charge in 2014 and Assistant (Training & Capacity Building) in 2016 to Finance Co-Ordinator in 2017. During my stint in these various capacities, it has always been my endeavour to give my best, besides learning and enhancing my knowledge in various facets of human rights.

I was selected for the Internship under Regional Capacity Building Program at Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP) Secretariat, Chiang Mai, Thailand, for 6 months from May 16, 2019 to November 16, 2019. In course of this program I had ample opportunity to excel in various human rights activities. I had been able to know more about the IP movement building in various part of Asia, IP issues and UN mechanism, project implementation & management, analysis and scrutiny of financial documents of various programs, in depth understanding of human rights and its many other aspects.

After successful completion of the program, I have returned to my native place and resumed my position as a gender cell in-charge in KHRW. I had shared my experiences with my co- members and been able to take initiatives in different activities backed by my organisation. I could employ my learnings in different activities taken up by my organisation, to mention a few, in the process of enhancing the organizational capacity building, developing the organisational strategic plans and reviews on the existing policies, preparing upcoming project proposals and submitting the same to the Donor and more importantly, establishing solidarity and networks with other organization at the grassroots level.

My, being able to complete the internship, had helped me in addressing our needs of building a capable youth activist. One of the major challenges of my organization is lack of expertise and dedicated youth to support and stand as a second liners for the forthcoming years. For the long-term growth of the organization and to strengthen the movements, youth leaderships are must need of the hour. AIPP have given a unique and enriching experience with great exposure in the real field with such internship programme. This opportunity encourages me in taking up more challenges in the future with better strengths and more confidents. I am thankful to AIPP for giving me such an opportunity.