By Saleh Rajab
On the week commencing 15th July, I was given the opportunity to do my work experience at Afzal Khan’s MP Manchester office in Whalley Range. Simply put: the experience has been extraordinary!
I have been quite interested in politics since year 9, and this week further fueled my fascination for politics. I learnt so much about political processes, and what an excellent job Afzal Khan does to represent his constituents.
I helped with organising a workshop that Afzal Khan will be hosting. I experienced firsthand the amount of work and effort that goes into organising an event like this: from scouting for suitable speakers, and sending them invites, to creating a letter for members and figuring out logistics for the day. It has really helped not only with my organisational skills, but also my confidence in writing emails and letters.
I also directly witnessed the procedure of getting a constituent’s concern to Parliament. This I found extremely intriguing since, for me, it made the theoretical become reality. I was able to see that what I was taught in politics lessons and read online, and how it isn’t so simple as I have learnt, and rather a degree of flexibility and creativity had to be implemented. This helped me inherit a great sense of adaptability and pragmatism, which will be extremely useful in the future.
However, the most interesting thing was the advice surgeries. I listened to the serious and dire issues that constituents had, and how Afzal Khan and his team had responded to them very well, despite the issues being extremely complex.
I cannot express enough how thankful I am to Afzal Khan for allowing me this fantastic opportunity. I do not think I would have learnt so much anywhere else, and for that, I will always cherish this week. I also want to really thank his team and office in Manchester, who have been nothing short of hard-working, useful and excellent – I’ve learnt so much from them too.