From the Field: Erica, from Burundi to Tajikistan, passing through Sudan

Erica Masiero is a Field Officer for OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation) in Tajikistan, and by the end of March she will work as Protection Manager for DRC (Danish Refugee Council) in Djibouti.

“In 2004-2005, I attended ASVI Social Change Master in NGO and non-profit organizations management, in order to pursue my dream: work in respect of ethical values and social change. The Master was ideal for its contents, the quality of teachers, the enthusiasm of the team of ASVI Social Change and also for the possibility to attend it while working at the same time.

It was, as it is said, the right thing at the right time. At that moment, the master provided me with the ABC to work in the non-profit sector, from the identification of a mission and vision, to project writing,  fundraising and work with human resources. During the master, an internship was expected, and I was lucky to do it with CISV NGO, firstly in Turin and after a few months in Burundi.

The knowledge I had acquired in project management thanks to the master were immediately useful, so that right after the internship, CISV offered me a collaboration as project manager in Burundi. The project was focused on good governance and human rights in 7 municipalities of the rural district of Karuzi, and it was funded by the European Commission. It was a very interesting leading project, with a close contact with local communities; the project also expected a literacy program for adults. In a short time, I found myself running a project with a team of more than 70 staff members.

Afterwards, I worked for AVSI NGO on a health and nutrition project on the area financed by ECHO, and then I left as a volunteer for the United Nations in Sudan,  where I served as Public Outreach and Training Officer to support the local government during 2010 elections and 2011 referendum in Kassala state, at the board with Eritrea. After that, I was offered a consultancy for UNHCR, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and I carried out a study on the risk of being stateless of the South Sudanese populations staying in northern Sudan and displaced people.

In 2013, I started to work at the WFP, World Food Programme, as programme officer and I worked in the areas at the board with southern Sudan.  At that time, I was coordinating and monitoring foodstuffs distribution in areas affected by the civil armed conflict.

I recently completed a 2-year long collaboration as field officer for OSCE in Tajikistan. I was in charge of the coordination of 3 Field Offices: with 26 local staff, and also I was in charge to write and follow activities related to gender and domestic violence prevention, but also about the economy, ecology, political dialogue and civil society.

By now, it has been 9 years since I have started working within the humanitarian sector and even if the price to pay is sometimes quite high, as it is almost impossible to put down roots in a specific country or come back to Italy, I am more than ever sure of my choice and I am always looking to learn more.

I can say that thanks to this Master I have successfully achieved my objective.”

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