A Deeper Take on Humanity: HLAF Internship at a Devcom Perspective

By: Jannela Mae Magtibay

From blended learning to online access in education, the world of digital and computerized technologies are now reshaping the learning experiences of the students amidst the pandemic. With the new modes of education, these students started to learn within the premises of their homes without being compromised on their studies. These events were considered as a huge adjustment for everyone. Although it has brought its fair share of benefits and difficulties to the majority, those who are affected are doing their best to comply with such changes. Hence this approach was also implied in internships and on-the-job training. Guided by their respective curriculums, each program rendered the required working hours into a work-from-home setup.

Enrolled under the BS Development Communication program, we were given adequate access to choosing the company we want to work with during our 200-hour internship. And as a future development practitioner, I decided to apply as an intern in Humanitarian Legal Assistance Foundation, Inc. to harness my skills in graphic and layout design as well apply the values of being purposive, pragmatic, and value-laden.

For the first week of my internship, I was tasked together with my colleagues—Jacob Esguerra, Julius Mojares, and Roland Reyes to present our proposed communication plan to the Executive Director of HLAF. Together with Mr. Melvin Nunez, our OJT supervisor as well as HLAF’s Communications committee, we expounded our plans and proposed various projects that will cover the upcoming weeks of our internship. Given the specific advocacies inclined with a specialized community of individuals, we learned that HLAF seeks to provide development in some of the most underserved areas of the country. And with that as regard, we aimed to introduce new concepts of audience engagement inclined with the sustainability of our endeavors as development communicators; and establish additional opportunities for organizational support where our programs, projects, and outreach services are distinguishable in the 21st century and a devcom perspective.

As we have tackled in our communication plan, our team aims to amplify the company branding, upgrade the quality of publicity materials, and build a wider network by utilizing modern audience-engagement platforms and still preserve the values and advocacies of HLAF. Such modifications can be done through amplification of the brand using a revamped color palette that will maintain the theme of our core values, typography, and more; updating publication materials for the social media accounts, webinars, and other communication efforts to establish a more grounded public appeal highlighting HLAF’s vision and mission; and integrate available communication spaces such as podcasts and virtual hangouts to appeal to the different sectors of our society. Through these objectives, I’ve learned how to incorporate the principles of modernity into a specific style that will fit the demands of the company.

Likewise, we also attended a Child Protection webinar in Virac, Catanduanes which aimed to raise awareness of children’s rights in various aspects. To sum up the week, we passed a revised version of our communication plan afterward and documented a 4-day pre-recorded Flipchart webinar.

The second week started with presenting an accomplishment report in the company’s staff meeting. As the team’s graphic and visual artist, I prepared different t-shirt and mug designs for the 20th commemorative anniversary of the company. I also prepared publicity material templates to revamp the social media branding and aligned the concepts with the existing guidelines of HLAF.

The third week mainly focused on the revisions of the proposed template for the publicity materials that will be published in the company’s social media accounts. Moreover, I was also tasked to create an artwork for a Feature article about the establishment of HLAF’s FRED Kamustahan Group which aims to connect former PDLs amidst the pandemic.

As a continuation of the tasks from the previous weeks, we were assigned to attend a presentation of BA Multimedia Arts students from De LaSalle – College of Saint Benilde. As an official partner of HLAF, they are tasked to assist us to improve the branding guidelines and website of the company. Although we are also students ourselves, HLAF entrusted us to lead the students from LaSalle to help them incorporate the values of the company in their outputs and adjust them from a devcom perspective.

HLAF taught me that organizing projects takes great courage and doing it during the pandemic takes magnanimity. The second week of July focused on one of their biggest projects—BCPC Congress 2021 which acknowledges the hard work of our duty-bearers and the efforts they put into all the programs and projects they are conducting for the protection of our children. I was tasked to create various publicity materials that will highlight the said event to increase the audience and participants’ engagement. Likewise, I was also assigned in making pub mats for Jail Decongestion Program activities in La Union Provincial Jail, Lucena City Jail, and Roxas District Jail and artwork for our feature article.

My internship for the third week of July focused on creating pubmats for another illustration for our second story of reintegration. It was then followed by creating a poster for a nationwide webinar in the basic child orientation protection program which I drew various elements and integrated them all with the core values of HLAF. Moreover, we also published posts regarding Quezon City Jail’s female dorm basic orientation seminar and case consultation, and Makati City Jail paralegal training.

The last week of my internship was hectic. I was tasked to create a poster that will show the official HLAF email for queries and invitations. I also created a pubmat that features HLAF’s Internship FAQs, Donation FAQs. Likewise, Mr. Nunez asked me to provide a digital ID for every HLAF staff. He also asked me to transfer the designs and templates that I made to Canva which he will use for future postings after we leave the company. In addition, I also created artworks for each article that will be published soon on HLAF’s official Facebook page.

Although it is such a waste that the internship only lasted for a month, I would still like to acknowledge how we managed to learn and experience various things in just a short period. My stay in HLAF made me realize how significant my skills are in the professional field and I should still pursue graphic and layout design with inclinations in the devcom field.


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