STORIES FROM OUR TEAM
My Journey to Social Work
By Khanittha Trakarn (U)
I dreamed of being a social worker to help the other people. In the real life, my education was accounting and human resource management. What I did and what I dreamed seemed opposite, but somehow my education and dream have connected.
I have been working with Child’s Dream since 2006, when Child’s Dream had only six or seven staff. My memories are of the variety of work, together with the variety of stake holders, which gave me new challenges every day as an accountant, and also all the administration tasks including HR and legal foundation. Marc let me to work quite independently, facing the challenges, taking the risks, problem solving and it helped me to improve my management knowledge and skills in many ways that, I’m sure, I couldn’t get from the other organisations. These are high value knowledge, skills and experiences that I have gained from being on the administration team at Child’s Dream for many years.
However, my dream to be a social worker was still there. In 2016, I had a first trip to Mae Sot, Tak Province, with Thomas (Head of Higher Education Focus Group) with the purpose of checking the financials for the CD programmes at Mae Sot. That’s how my new stage in life started. I shared with Thomas about my dream of wanting to be a social worker and he helped to make my dream come true by welcoming me as his team member together with a big “Sustainable Development Source Book”, give me the time for read the book and data of all the programmes that HE have in Myanmar, Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Thailand. After then he took me full working in fields with him to have meeting with the partners’ organization, give close coaches and monitor. Additional with let me take the challenges, do the mistake, working independent and do problem solving. To me this seems to be the way of capacity building for me to be a programme manager and…and that was so meaningful to me.
After that, I tried hard to do my social work without the exact educational background and experience. Currently, I work hard as a Programme Manager for our Thailand and Lao PDR programmes. My main responsibilities include, collaborating with partner organizations, designing and developing the programme, and following up to make sure they are on track and ensure programme success.
I learned a lot from Thomas, but was still able to be independent and take the challenges and risks to learn and improve my own capabilities. Managing a programme involves a lot of collaboration and travelling. As a single parent like me, I always have to strike a balance between family and work. And that, together with traveling and opportunities to meet other social workers, grew my social work knowledge and experience. Child’s Dream made my dream come true!
I would like to say thank you very much to Child’s Dream. Thanks, also, to all the colleagues, who stood beside me and gave me the necessary support. My passion today is to continue to support others and that will never change.