My internship at the NAACP

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Curtis Parker

 

Dear Editor:
What an experience I have had.  The 13 weeks that I have worked as the NACCP intern I was able to experience the nonprofit work force atmosphere. Working as the NAACP intern allowed me to have an in depth intimate look at just how the world’s oldest secular organization helps people.

Since May 20 I have worked as the NAACP intern, during that time I believe I discovered the main thing that makes the NAACP work, the people. Each day at the NAACP welcomes a new challenge. Working here has brought me across a lot of people, some who need help, some who want to help, and some in organizations like the NAACP who fight the day to day challenge of making our community a better place. No matter whether their intentions or origins were,

I’ve learned that the power is truly in people. The people hold the power to make a difference. During my time here I was blessed with the opportunity to play my small part in helping the people of our community.

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I began my work with making sure we had an established website, www.pghnaacp.weebly.com. I created it because simply we did not have one. I felt it was necessary to have a place that the people could identify with the Pittsburgh Unit of the NAACP. I created it with the hopes that people could take notice of the things we have done as the Pittsburgh Unit, get informed about National NAACP issues, become members of the Pittsburgh Branch and look forward to upcoming events our branch may have.

Furthermore, I created a Facebook page for the Pittsburgh NAACP https://www.facebook.com/NAACPPGH to coincide with the website.

While the Pittsburgh NAACP website will reach most, I have hopes the Pittsburgh NAACP Facebook will reach the remaining. Having the Pittsburgh NAACP Facebook page in my opinion opens up the branch to a demographic it was not in full connection with. The demographic I am speaking of is the young people of Pittsburgh. The NAACP Pittsburgh Facebook page allows the youth of our community to gain easy access to the site while letting them identify with the Pittsburgh Unit, also allowing them certain interaction that was not known before.

Next, moving away from the cyber world I also was able to make an impact on our community while in office. I updated the membership system and added a timer so the Unit will now know when people’s memberships expire. This will allow new memberships to easily be sent out.

Also, I worked with Mrs. Terry Deluliis and the Pittsburgh Zoo. They were nice enough to give the Pittsburgh Unit 20 free tickets to the Zoo. On July 20 of this year Mrs. Twanda Carlisle, Ashley Chan from Duquesne University and I entertained several families at the Pittsburgh Zoo. The trip to the Zoo was a great time the kids along with all of the chaperones enjoyed themselves. We were able to provide food and refreshments besides just a tour of the Zoo. Pictures of the event can be seen on the Pittsburgh NAACP Facebook page and our main website.

While working in the office I discovered the difficulties of getting access to events in Pittsburgh. Most places I wrote or called were not able to accommodate everyone who was to participate in events I hoped to have. South Side Cinema and Waterworks Cinema were two such places. However, I was able to secure six passes from Southside Cinema and two from Waterworks Cinema. Originally I wanted to have a movie night field trip. It is my hope now that these passes could be used for a fundraiser in the future.

As I mentioned before tickets for events in the city were hard to come by, that is why I am proud to say that I was able to form a Partnership with Tickets for Kids. They are an organization that provides tickets to events across the City of Pittsburgh for nonprofit organizations. Now, The Pittsburgh branch does not have to make handwritten or telephone asks, all the Unit has to do is notify the Tickets for Kids representative (me) and I can place an order for a event off the Tickets for Kids website. Tickets for Kids provides tickets for events like Steelers games, Pirate games, cirque du soleil shows and other amazing things that might be going on in Pittsburgh.

Another thing that I was able to do was to form working relationships. One new relationship I formed was with the new NAACP charter at Duquesne University. They have provided support to the Pittsburgh Branch with anything the Unit has asked of them.

Another relationship I was able to form was with Alex Herring, Westinghouse Principal. Once given permission from the School Board, he said he would be willing to put any event the NAACP wants to do inside of Westinghouse.

Mr. Herring’s cooperation is great especially pending the outcome of my meetings with the Carnegie Library. Ms. Leeann Anna, Teen Coordinator for the Carnegie library and I currently are in the midst of working on a way to see if The Pittsburgh NAACP can partner with the Carnegie Library for an event that would allow the young to display their artistic talents. This event would run through the entire school year and would serve as a great alternative program for kids to get involved with instead of having idle time on the streets.

Although, the big picture is to eventually get advertisement for this event not just in Westinghouse but all Public schools. As I said before just needs approval from the school board, with the help from Carnegie Library I do not see this as a problem.

Lastly, not to forget the working relationship established with Life’s Work and Community Empowerment Association along with Cameron Clay from Petra International Ministries. All have agreed to do whatever they can to help us here at The NAACP.

I am so grateful for the opportunity I was given. I understand this is an opportunity that most are not fortunate to have. I would like to thank Chase Patterson, Diversity Cooperation and Panera Bread. I also would like to thank the Executive Board of the NAACP for allowing me to work for them; I hope I served you in a manner that you can be proud of. My only wish is that I leave this position better than it was when I came into it. Thank you again and God Bless you all.

Sincerely,
Curtis Parker

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