For every child, rights

How an internship at UNICEF set me up to pursuit career in the protection of child rights.

Bakhriddin Sultonzoda
Bahriddins story
UNICEF Tajikistan/ 2019/ U. Fazylova
22 January 2020

Bakhriddini Sultonzoda is 24 y.o. Tajik citizen, living in the United Arab Emirates. He graduated from the law faculty of the Middlesex University. In 2019 he joined the internship programme at UNICEF Tajikistan. 

I always wanted to become a public defender. There are millions of people around the world who are starving, facing physical and sexual violence and deprived of basic human rights, especially children. Protection of the rights of children is the thing I care about, and the other thing is the protection of our environment, as a whole. In my opinion, these two aspects are interrelated.

 “It breaks my heart knowing that there are so many children around the world that are deprived of basic rights and services.”

One day, during one of my employment searches, I stumbled upon the post by UNICEF Tajikistan that they were looking for interns. Without any hesitation, I applied with a hope to be selected.

In the morning of the 20th of August, I opened my email to find an invitation to attend a technical test at the UNICEF office in Dushanbe, which was held the next day. My flight was overnight, so when I landed I was already suited and booted and made my way towards UNICEF’s country office. The human resources manager asked us to wait a week for the results to identify the best candidates for the interview. Fortunately, I was selected.

It was at the interview when I first met my chief of section, enthusiastic and smiling Tetyana along with one of my mentors, responsive Khuvaydo. In the company of such people I forgot it was a formal interview. All I saw was a discussion between people who have similar goals and ambitions. I knew I would be on board UNICEF’s train when I left the interview.

UNICEF Tajikistan/ 2019
Bakhriddin with his colleagues from the Knowledge team.

My first week was fantastic. I joined the team during their retreat, where I was given an opportunity to get to know my new colleagues. While on the internship, I liked the approach of UNICEF in working with children. The children here are seen as future leaders of societies, great inventors, explorers, and brilliant minds. I learned that UNICEF is striving to protect these basic rights of all children without discrimination.

I sincerely thank all my colleagues for all the knowledge and experience they shared, as well as the support they provided. Namely, I would like to express my gratitude to Shukufa and Khuvaydo, who always kept me on my toes, Yusuf and Atorud who would delegate some of their tasks to me, so that I learn something new for myself and last, but not least Tetyana, who made me feel like part of the team and not just an intern. I will certainly be back on UNICEF’s board in the future.

team work
UNICEF Tajikistan/ 2019
Knowledge team retreat, Dushanbe, 2019.

"I want to dedicate my life and career to enhance the lives of our children worldwide, as well as actively protecting our environment, in order to leave our future generations with a healthy planet."

*Note from the Knowledge team:

Bakhriddin is one of the first interns hired by UNICEF Tajikistan office in the year 2019. The UNICEF team expresses gratitude to our interns for their programme support and their valuable contribution for every child in Tajikistan. Wishing good luck to Bakhriddin!