Celebrating Success: Faheed’s Internship at 510

Faheed, an MSc student at the Institute for Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation of the University of Twente (ITC) in the Netherlands, recently completed an internship at the Netherlands Red Cross’ data and digital team, 510, within the I-CISK project.

Faheed’s engagement in this project underscores the collaborative efforts between 510 and ITC to nurture young talent and drive impactful contributions to climate-related initiatives. Working closely with his 510 and ITC supervisors, Emie, Daniele, and Marc, he assessed the climate forecast skills for drought forecast products. This involved analyzing precipitation seasonal forecasts from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) and the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI), alongside observations gathered from reanalysis products and literature on drought occurrences.

Our colleagues from GECOSistema provided an initial tool which Faheed used to compare the forecasts with drought observations in the country, leading to an initial understanding of the predictive value of each dataset for forecasting observed droughts. These results carry value for the Lesotho Living Lab, and thereby will contribute to the development of Climate Services in Lesotho, which aim to reduce the impact of droughts on vulnerable people in the country.

Throughout his Master’s programme, Faheed has acquired theoretical knowledge, particularly in disasters and hazard modeling, as well as programming skills. His internship at 510 allowed him to apply his expertise in a practical setting. On behalf of 510, we want to thank Faheed for his dedication and contributions!

“The internship with 510 was insightful and wonderful. I was particularly interested in working with climate datasets and extreme weather events, for which the I-CISK project offered me the perfect opportunity. It was a challenging and rewarding experience which allowed me to assess the climate forecast skills of various global datasets for drought prediction using Python scripts. I am grateful that I was able to be a part of I-CISK’s ambition to innovate for next-generation Climate Services.” – Faheed