My experience at BFP-B

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This summer, I had the opportunity of joining BFP-B’s Challenge Fund (CF) team as a volunteer. I came in hoping to gain the ‘corporate experience’, however, I can proudly say that I have attained a lot more than just that in the past month.

From reviewing proposals, to designing awards, to attending events, I’ve gained hands-on experience with event management, graphic design and networking. I was often given documents and presentations to review and edit, which helped me stay informed on the work that is being accomplished at BFP-B. I would find myself questioning parts of the document which I didn’t understand; that allowed me to grasp the essence of Challenge Funds’ work. It taught me the intricate steps that go into facilitating change, which is crucial, since the focus is not only on the results but also the process of obtaining the results.

While I was part of the Challenge Fund Team, I also had the opportunity to work with other departments such as the Policy Advocacy Team; which helped me acquire more valuable experience under my belt. I worked on a video, a two pager for promoting 3 business models tested under challenge fund to improve the impact investment landscape of Bangladesh. I have also worked for other graphic design related tasks. This was something that I had to learn on the job, and a useful skill that I was able to refine here.

During my stay, CF organized a round-table discussion titled ‘Creating Blended Finance Architecture to Catalyse Impact Investment in Bangladesh.’ Being directly in contact with the organizers taught me the ins and outs of event management. That was one of my most exciting experiences as my designs were utilized on the event banners and invitation cards.

Another worthwhile experience was designing an award that we presented to a company. Being solely in charge of contacting the vendor and finalising the design and budget taught me the art of managing vendors. I was also lucky to have witnessed a study result dissemination seminar by the policy team; a large scale event on ‘Transforming the Microfinance Sector for Financial Deepening’; in which I acted as a trainee rapporteur.

Getting the chance to hear some very influential speakers within the development and banking sector such as; Mr. Ahmed Jamal, Deputy Governor of Bangladesh Bank and our project leader along with Mr. Md. Ashadul Islam, Senior Secretary, Financial Institution Division, was astounding. Amidst editing papers and designing awards, I have made some great friends here at BFP-B. Everyone in the team is amazing with each having a unique attribute to them. Lunch time was definitely one of my favourites as everyone in this office seems to be a food enthusiast! My experience at BFP-Bf has set the benchmark for me, in terms of working environment and wherever I go from here, I know that this is the standard I will seek.

This blog post is written by Ms. Sushmita Meer, who is currently a volunteer at BFP-B.