Passion for women’s rights and Latin American culture led Laura to work for UN Women as a Regional Evaluation Specialist in Panama. She struggles daily with campaigns and lobbying missions to ensure that women around the world get the rights and protection they deserve, but it’s all worth it in the end.
How did you end up working for the UN in Latin America?
It has been a long-term journey. I have been focused in an objective: working at the United Nations, improving women ́s conditions to be more independent and free. When I finished my career, Political Science & International Relations, I worked in the Secretary of State for International Cooperation, in Madrid, where I developed my capacities and increased my knowledge on development and evaluation. It was there where I also started to think about scaling up one level in my career, working for United Nations in Latin America.
What difficulties have you had to overcome?
The recruitment process for the UN was very demanding and I had to make a huge effort to improve my level of English. In a sentimental way, I found it very difficult to leave my family and friends in Madrid. Now, I suffer when I travel and do not see my children (4 and 2 years old) during a week.
What inspires you about your career?
The women involved in our cooperation programmes. Most of them have suffered dramatic situations, physical and sexual violence, do not have economic opportunities, and are not represented in political spheres or in the private sector. They work very hard with us to change this situation, and it inspires me a great deal.
What would your ‘one piece of advice’ be?
Nothing is handed to you. You have to make a big effort to get your dreams. Invest in yourself and do not stop until you reach your goals.
Do you have a favorite motivational quote?
“The more we share the more we have”, from Leonard Nimov.
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