Meet Mythili: Project Intern, HowToTellYourChild

Over the past two months, you have read my captions and profile pieces, watched my videos, seen my images, posts and tweets, and witnessed my attempts to show you how HowToTellYourChild’s content can help your family. It was a collective effort of the people whose stories I have already told you, but this story is my farewell piece. Meet me: Mythili — Project Intern at HowToTellYourChild.

I am pursuing my Bachelors degree in Journalism and Mass Communication at the Walter Cronkite School at Arizona State University in the United States. Summer vacation was around the corner and I couldn’t wait to spend 2 ½ months at home in Bangalore. But, I knew I had to do something productive to keep myself busy and feed my resume. Thus, the LinkedIn job witch-hunt began. I even did a phone interview with a large organization while on a holiday in the UK. But, nothing worked out.

Then, on the eve of June, I was offered an internship with HowToTellYourChild, and I jumped at the opportunity. I scrolled through HowToTellYourChild.com and watched the videos. I learned it was a social initiative targeted at families, with fun and unique content. Plus, the videos and books featured the cutest dragons! What was not to love? So the next day, I visited the office and loved the atmosphere. Everyone was so friendly, the ambiance was so warm and I instantly felt in place. I met Deepa, Priya Divya and Jai, and was excited to work with such brilliant minds.

The past two months have been nothing short of excitement. Working at a startup is a feeling unmatched because everyone knows everyone, and I love that atmosphere. I got to meet people from varied backgrounds and diverse skill-sets, and that enhanced my world view.

Deepa’s vision and Priya’s creativity were the two pillars that I relied on immensely, supported by Jai’s constant motivation. Deepa is an inspiration with massive feathers in her cap and being able to work with a woman who has created a category was an experience I’ll cherish immensely. And Priya’s endless flow of ideas is a superpower that is a treat to witness.

I worked very closely with the program director, Divya. Being one of the national coordinators of a popular campaign and passionate toward the cause of empowering children, I gained a lot of insight from her. From our social media strategies to designing posts, it was a joy to work with such a lovely person who would listen to my thinking-out-loud and never shut me down without giving me a chance to advocate for my ideas.

I remember jumping seeing our first few followers on Instagram and Twitter. It was a priceless feeling seeing your child take its first steps. My heart smiles every time I see a notification pop up because it means that we are doing the right things to get your attention and give you the resources we have to facilitate honest conversations between adults and children. I never thought that I would be directly posting to the social media accounts of an organisation, and it was an empowering feeling. I learned so much about social media, gauging audiences, and creating posts, infographics, videos and campaigns to make heads turn online.

The #BoysTalk campaign will always be close to my heart. I remember randomly telling Divya that it would be interesting to see how boys perceive periods. She told me to make it happen. I spoke to a bunch of the guys I knew and I was pleasantly surprised that not one shied away from talking about periods. We then collated their answers and made innovative videos, mind-maps and quotes. We found that boys don’t find period-talk awkward and believe that they too should get the “period-talk” so that they can help girls out, support and understand them. Each piece travelled and gained traction. It was a great feeling to watch our campaign do so well.

With my fair share of late nights, early mornings, long meetings, constant text message exchanges, emails, occasional frustration and overwhelming satisfaction, I was never made to feel as the temporary intern. I was a part of the team and I couldn’t have asked for any more.

I asked for an internship and am now walking away with two months of beautiful memories, lessons learned, insight gained and immense love. With quite a few new tricks up my sleeve, I can’t wait to jump back into my world in another timezone and continue to explore the vast realm of opportunities out there.

It has been a great run and although I will miss it terribly, I got more than I could have wished for and am extremely thankful to everyone in the office who put up with me and smiled every time and walked in. I will never forget you, so thank you for the memories and the opportunities.

And as I close this chapter, I can’t wait to start writing the next one.