Please do contact me if you have any particular interest in development - I'm not hugely experienced but I'd endeavour to help/point you in some direction!If you're based in Hong Kong or Asia and are interested in the work of Viva, please do contact me too.
Christine is a true 'Esc' hero. She escaped her corporate Law job and set up an office in Hong Kong for Viva, a charity to generate funds and increase awareness of children at risk in Asia.
Please do contact me if you have any particular interest in development - I'm not hugely experienced but I'd endeavour to help/point you in some direction!
If you're based in Hong Kong or Asia and are interested in the work of Viva, please do contact me too.
I am in the process of setting up a mobilisation office for the amazing children at risk charity, http://www.viva.org/" rel="nofollow">Viva.
Well, I did quite a few things!
My first job was with a London magic circle law firm where I trained and qualified as a corporate lawyer. I was with this firm for 4 years. I know plenty of people who enjoy their lawyer jobs but for me I thought life was too short to be stuck in something I wasn't passionate about!
After I left in late 2007 I tried different things in international development and human rights, which included working with an NGO in relief and development (http://www.tearfund.org/" rel="nofollow">Tearfund), and interning with a couple of human rights think tanks. This summer my husband and I also volunteered on a residential project with street children in the Philippines.
It's hard to pinpoint a particular moment which changed everything, though I have to say that it helped having a teacher-turned-explorer boyfriend then (now husband) who was http://www.amazon.com/Wild-Heart-Discovering-Secret-Mans/dp/0785268839" rel="nofollow">Wild At Heart.
Don't ask what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and go do that.
On one hand I wanted to have had something lined up before I left my corporate law job (I was, after all, a lawyer, so was naturally rather risk-averse) but my hours were so long and there just wasn't any physical or head space to think about anything, so I had nothing planned as such when I finished my notice. I was really in need of a break though so was glad to have 4 months off. During the break I rested and tried to regain perspective, and after that I spent a whole month talking to everyone and anyone who was willing to talk to me about the international development and charity world. I asked my friends for any contacts they were happy to give me, and built up my network that way. I found my first job through doing that!
Taking a few months off might not be a viable option for some, but I was fortunate enough having saved up a bit of money, and I didn't have any mortgage or babies to worry about.
Best: The best thing is that even though nowadays I'm still busy and sometimes working longish hours (nothing compared to the City though!), I'm doing something I'm passionate about and I no longer feel chained to my job because of some unknown fear/feeling of loss if I walked away from it.
Can't really think of the worst thing really.... obviously one has to go through lots of soul searching about one's own identity when one jumps ship, and I felt scared and vulnerable and insecure at various points, but it's all part of a very good growing up experience (with the benefit of hindsight I can of course say this now...). I talk about some of my struggles on my http://www.lifewithoutablackberry.blogspot.com/" rel="nofollow">blog.
Try not to give too much weight to people who tell you that it cannot be done - because there will always be people who are pessimistic / risk averse / or for whatever reason think you're mad!
The flip side of this is to talk to everyone and anyone who's happy to chat with you - you'd never know what you might learn or who they might point you to.