French student in social service assistant (social work), my training path made it possible to go on an international internship. This seemed to me to be an opportunity for professional and personal experiences, getting to integrate another culture and therefore of different practices.
My choice quickly focused on Quebec because of French language! Indeed, this professional internship requires being quickly involved in practicing, so it seemed important to me to go to a country where language would not be a barrier. In addition, I was drawn to the fact of going to the American continent. This is a personal desire to move away from Europe to discover a culture that is radically different from French culture and also to discover Canada.
But the choice of Quebec was also made for professional reasons. This internship was to be a social intervention internship of collective interest. The goal was to develop my professional practice in working with groups so that the people we support can achieve personal goals through collective approaches. However, in Quebec, Social Work with Groups is a much more developed practice than in France. An internship in Quebec was therefore a good idea!
I was looking for 6-month internship in the field of social reintegration because it is an essential element of our practice of social service, one of our main missions is promote the autonomy of people, and this requires social inclusion.
Then, drug addiction also interested me because these are situations that we can be confronted with very regularly as a professional: addictive behaviors often go hand in hand with precariousness, isolation, …
Finally, if Dianova seemed to be an interesting internship site for me, it is also due to biopsychosocial perspective combined with a treatment environment in a therapeutic community. These two points fully corresponded to my internship objectives.
What were the difficulties?
The difficulties that I was confronted concern above all the procedures for obtaining the Canadian Visa! These are rather lengthy, complicated and can be costly procedures. So you have to go ahead and hold on!
But going on an internship abroad is not all rosy either: in addition to the distance from relatives, you must maintain a link with the school in order to meet the expectations for my State Diploma. It is necessary to implement a real intellectual gymnastics so that everything that is learned here can fall within the expectations of my training.
What are my achievements?
A few weeks before the end of my internship, after more than 6 months spent in Dianova, I can say that all of my goals have been achieved, either professional or personal.
The Dianova team constant welcoming, the autonomy and freedom of initiative allowed me to learn a lot, to evolve, to grow and to build my own professional identity.
Immersion in a different culture, with different practices, broadened and enriched my vision of the world. Being far from my daily environment, my loved ones or even facing a different lifestyle has allowed me to gain autonomy, independence.
I was lucky to have an unforgettable experience!