Meet Our Interns: Max, Events Coordination Intern at Greenpop

Meet Our Interns: Max, Events Coordination Intern at Greenpop

Photo credits: Greenpop

An open mind and keen to help out with anything

Max is studying Public Administration in Germany and as part of his studies needs to do an internship abroad and have a social working experience. According to him when working for the government and public authorities you also deal with people’s welfare and because he wanted to leave Germany in the cold winter looking for an internship abroad with an NGO seemed like a logical next step.

“It would give me new and different perspectives and experiences for my further work back in Germany. I was looking for great spots all over the world. Some of my friends did their internship in Cape Town and so I decided to go there as well for an Events Coordination Internship with Greenpop. It seemed like a great opportunity to make a difference and experience a great time while chasing a bigger aim. Also the first contact was great, I applied and I had a very nice Skype conversation, which made me just “more hungry” for Greenpop, the people there and Cape Town. And it was a good idea!”

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As from the beginning Max told the team he would be keen to help out with anything they needed help with. With the Platbos Reforest Weekends coming up there was enough to do with regards to coordinating, planning and preparing for these events, but he also assisted with some market research, direct marketing and organizing the information evening at the office for parents of high school students (and other people) keen to come to Greenpop’s annual Festival of Action in Zambia. It turned out no week was as the week before during his internship. “There are often a lot of different tasks coming up and you have to try to adapt and solve the “problems” efficiently. Sometimes it’s not easy to solve a problem quickly and you have to step out of your comfort zone to solve it, but these are the moments where you grow, develop and get better!”

Don’t underestimate the Events Coordination Internship beforehand

Coordinating logistics around one of Greenpop’s biggest events for the year was one of Max’s main tasks, e.g. arranging all the necessary elements in order to run the event including, lighting, tents, security, signage, parking etc. But also connecting with partners and suppliers in confirming the necessary supplies needed to run the festival. Looking back he thinks preparations for the set-up and event itself are often underrated as it is essential and extremely important to get all the necessary materials ready for the event. Well begun is half done!


He went on site one week before the festival started for build-up, which meant assisting with structural builds, preparing the whole campsite, general areas (such as stages, food court, etc.) as well as the parking area and a lot of different spots. So he spend the week working hard setting up tents, laying cables, getting the electricity to work and just making the whole space ready for two great weekend for people to enjoy their stay in the forest. During both festival weekends he and the rest of the production team basically spend keeping the space running. For example: make sure there was enough fuel in generator, the fires are burning, tents aren’t blown away, (solar) lights are working and in the right position, etc.  “What we did at the Platbos Forest makes me proud. Setting up a festival with a great team and seeing how people enjoy the place we built and created made me very proud and grateful to be a part of this team! I can definitely call these sixteen days in the forest the highlight of my Events Coordination Internship. It was hard work but it was also so much fun. The team was great, we did great work (I hope) and I made some really ‘lekker’ friends!”

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Amazing teamwork

According to Max the whole Greenpop team is just amazing! “Everybody appreciates and likes each other, which makes it so easier to feel good and to do a good job. If you have questions or need a hand you can just ask and it doesn’t matter who you ask, because everybody will help you out. My supervisors were just great as I was always welcome to give my opinion or suggest another way of doing things. And sometimes it would be implemented and sometimes not.”

When we asked him what he learned during this Events Coordination Internship he replied “First I think I improved my English. I think it is still not the best, but it’s a lot better now.  And I learned to appreciate leaving my comfort zone. During this internship I had to do that quite a few times, but this just brought me forward. I also got closer to the environment I live in and learned to take better care for it!” Max is not sure (or maybe just being modest) if he made an impact or a difference, but according to his supervisor he was  “a key roll player in making our largest festival of the year a success. His involvement gave great strength and much needed energy to creating a most significant event.” So according to us the answer to this question is a big YES….you definitely made an impact!

After his internship he took some well deserved time off to travel around and explore South Africa before going back to Germany to do another internship. There is only one thing he would say if someone would ask him about the Events Coordination Internship with Greenpop: Do it!!

Photo credits header: Veronique Bayle Orban

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