Internship Programs

We accept applications on a rolling basis.

For the Non-Profit Entrepreneurship Program (Winter 2018) or the Non-Profit Office Internship Program (Winter 2018) which will be carried out in English, please access the program’s respective page.

The aim of our rolling internship program is to nurture future global leaders in international cooperation. We welcome those who are interested in international cooperation, or those who are thinking of a career in international cooperation to apply for our program. We do not have an age restriction for applicants. However, please note that the program will be conducted entirely in Japanese, so applicants will need to have a high level of Japanese proficiency.

Program Details

Venue TPAK Headquarters (Kanagawa, Japan)
Duration

6~12 Months

※   This is open to negotiation based on your circumstances.

Hours

Twice a week on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 11:00 to 17:00.

Language Requirement You are eligible for our internship program if you possess an N2 or above level of Japanese. Interns must be able to clearly articulate their views in spoken and written Japanese, and function seamlessly in a 100% Japanese speaking environment. If you are unsure if you fit this requirement, please consider applying for our volunteer program instead, which has a lower language requirement. Please note that all correspondence with us must be conducted in Japanese.
Application Process

①    Inform us of your desire to participate in an information session.

②    Submit the internship application documents we will distribute to you at the session.

③    Participate in an interview. We will inform you if you have been selected for the program.

④    Participate in the orientation.

⑤    Start your internship!

Conditions The internship is unpaid, and we will not be able to reimburse your travel costs. Furthermore, applicants must be eligible to carry out an internship in the country.
Content Interns will be required to participate in volunteer work within our offices and at our events while receiving guidance from staff members pertaining to international cooperation and the non-profit sector in Japan. Interns are required to submit progress reports in Japanese.
Contact Us

Igota Yoshiyuki at contact@tpak.org.

※   Please note that all correspondence must be undertaken in Japanese.

Hear from our interns!

~ Interview with Ms. T ~

Ms. T has interned diligently at our headquarters for approximately half a year. She is a Japanese high school student. As she is a full-time student, she comes to our offices to intern on the weekends.

What are your hours? Can they be negotiated?

As a general rule, I am expected to go to TPAK’s offices once a week, on either Wednesdays or Saturdays from 11:00 to 17:00. Some days I am permitted to arrive late or finish early. If due to personal circumstances I need to adjust my hours, I can do so easily by explaining my situation to a staff member well before the fact. Communication concerning my working hours with my supervisor prevent any plans from being made without my knowledge, and vice versa.

What specifically are your duties as an intern at TPAK?

Largely, my duties as an intern can be classified into two categories. The first is office duty. The second is event duty. A typical day at the office consists of cleaning, office work, lunch, office work, and then tea time. My work duties as an office intern differ from day to day, depending on what needs to be done. In general, my duties include the management of our fair-trade products and relief supplies, the packing of any goods to be sent overseas and computer work. At lunch and tea time, we are expected to discuss a wide range of topics with the volunteers and other interns present in the office. As an event intern, I help set up stalls, conduct sales and product explanations, and help take down the stall once the event is over. As we are given frequent break times at events, we have an opportunity to visit the other stalls around us, which is always fun.

Does what you do truly contribute to helping those across the world in need?

Even though as an intern I don’t personally go to regions in need, I know that the packages I help pack in Japan, and the money I help raise at events indirectly work to help support those who need supporting. I understand that the work I do is important despite its indirect nature, and feel a sense of accomplishment from completing the tasks I undertake. Often, the staff members who periodically visit the regions we support come back with reports concerning how we are helping people, and that’s how I know I am helping to make a difference.

Can a high school student really make valuable contributions to an NGO?

When I began my internship, I was 16 years old and in my first year of high school. Truthfully I was worried if I could make any real contribution to the organization. However, after listening to the talk given at the information session, I realized that there were a wide range of tasks that needed to be completed at an NGO, many of which I could help with. Also, I realized that if I ever needed help, all I had to do was ask. There is a wide range of people who volunteer at TPAK including students, adults and the elderly. We all cooperate in order to support the organization.

I don’t actually know that much about international cooperation or developing countries – is that ok?

TPAK teaches its interns about problems in developing countries during the internship orientation period, so it is not a problem. I think it’s important for interns to take the initiative to conduct research on their own, however the office is full of people who are experts on the issue, and we are free to ask them any questions if we have them.

~ Interview with Ms. K~

Ms. K is an extremely bright university student who we were very lucky to meet during a summer internship at our offices. As she has more freedom with her schedule, she is able to intern for us twice a week.

What is your typical day like as an intern?

We start off the day by cleaning the offices together. Next, we are assigned tasks ranging from computer work, to management of the fair-trade products to be sold at events, to the sorting of items related to our projects. At lunch and tea time, we have group discussions with the staff, and other interns concerning important issues in the non-profit sector. At events, we have opportunities to fund raise by selling free-trade products. By explaining the background of our products, we engage the customers and raise money for our cause. During events, you especially get to feel like you’re truly involved in the effort to support those in need.

What’s the atmosphere like in the office?

Everyone working at TPAK’s headquarters is kind, and is ready to teach me anything I don’t understand. I feel at home at the office, and it is a very comfortable environment to work in. When interacting with the non-profit industry, it is very important to be kept up to date on the latest news around the world. At TPAK, we share news stories we are aware of, and discuss our thoughts and opinions on these topics. We learn to communicate our ideas to other people. By listening to others, I have realized many things about the world, and have come to know much information about current events. I feel like it is an environment where everyone benefits.

What are the other interns like?

The interns are mostly high school or university students, but sometimes even children as young as three, and people as old as eighty come to help out in the office. If you feel like you want to contribute to the betterment of someone’s life, regardless of your age there will definitely be something you can do here. If everyone works hard together, even small efforts bear big results. I feel that this experience is really worthwhile.

Can you really contribute without travelling to the areas in need?

Before this experience, I did not know that it was possible to help those in need from afar. But now I have realized there is so much I can do even from Japan, which will facilitate the betterment of the lives of those in faraway countries. Many small tasks will accumulate to become a big source of support. This is the main thing I was able to realize through this internship.