I met one JPO through e-mail who is working for the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Italy. Her name is Rim Ji-yeune. She graduated from The Graduate Institute of Peace Studies at Kyung Hee University.
Q 1. What do you do as a JPO in FAO?
I work mainly on the ACC Network for Rural Develop-ment and Food Security, (http://www.accnetwork.net). It is a coordination mechanism to follow up on the World Food Summit Plan (WFS) of Action.
One of my interesting tasks is to analyse what a particular country is doing, or has done, since the WFS in order to alleviate poverty/hunger. I also have other tasks like updating our website, and writing news articles, etc.
Q 2. What do you think is the special attraction of being a JPO?
If you are interested in working in the development field, this is the ideal opportunity, as a young professional, to witness, participate in and learn about the various aspects of development. You will also get a clearer picture of the challenges and opportunities in this field and learn about the United Nations System.
Q 3. What is the most difficult aspect of working as a JPO?
I have only been here for six months, but I hope they were the hardest. It is difficult in the beginning to try to integrate into the system and see yourself as part of the big picture.
For a short time, people will hold your hand and guide you through the things you should be doing/learning. It is up to you to learn and make the most out of this opportunity by being pro-active, interested, and strategically focused.
Q 4. How can we prepare to be a JPO? I want to know about the linguistic aspects of the job and another aspect of it.
The most basic pre-requisite is to be able to work well in English. Nevertheless, it is more important to be aware of the different development issues and how they relate to the socio-economic and political situation of each countries. Having some international experience, ideally development work in the field could make your experience as a JPO more fulfilling.
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