Working for BAGLY Inc. this summer has been very informative for me in regards to social justice and nonprofit work, as well as learning how an office job works. This has been an especially amazing way for me to learn about work after college because it is explicitly safe for members of the LGBTQ+ community. The organization is staffed by many people within the queer community and its purpose is to help the members of the LGBTQ+ community. My coworkers and bosses have all helped make this an informative work environment while feeling socially comfortable within my own identity. Although this internship has been mostly online, I have gone into the office once to do some written work and it was interesting seeing such a safe queer working environment. The office also functions as a community center for Boston, so it has a very safe and open feel to it.
While I was at BAGLY Inc. as an intern, I mostly did work behind the scenes that most people would not see. My impact mainly took work off the plates of the paid employees and made it easier for them to do less monotonous and more person-to-person work. I essentially helped BAGLY function better by doing administrative work such as sending emails to donors or thank you letters to people for donating. Although this is not very direct work for social justice, it does help to get more donations for BAGLY that can then enable the company to grow and help more people. It has also been nice seeing my coworkers help the company grow along by doing similar work because we know what we are doing is meaningful and a good cause. Getting to know my coworkers who are within the LGBTQ+ community also helps expand my connections as well as expands the LGBTQ+ community. My coworkers and I have come a long way since we first met.
Starting at BAGLY, I wish I had not been so afraid to meet and get to know my coworkers. Sometimes I can be hesitant in social situations and this time I was very hesitant. Through working at BAGLY, I have learned how amazing and supportive my coworkers are. This will help me greatly in a post-college career because I know not to be afraid to reach out and make connections. I have especially grown to know my coworker Mary, who is the one always in the office.
Someone who is going into the social justice or nonprofit field cannot be afraid to make connections. Connections are extremely important not only to secure a job, but also for doing anything within the field. If one needs people to donate, someone to write a blog post, or speak at an event, then one must be able to make connections. Social justice is not an easy field for a career, but it can be an extremely satisfying one if one truly believes in what they are doing.