I am currently working as an independent Monitoring & Evaluation Consultant.
I’m documenting and evaluating the Colombia INSPIRE Coordination Course, implemented by the End Violence Lab (The Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children), the University of Edinburgh, the Colombian Institute for Family Welfare (ICBF), and multisectoral partners (USAID, Together for Girls & UNICEF).
I am a sociocultural anthropology and public administration graduate with 10 years of experience in research, advocacy and management of human rights projects in Latin America, Europe, and Central Asia (particularly on alternative care and migrant and refugee children).
I’ve managed social projects, worked on advocacy, and researched for 10 years, mainly on child protection issues in Latin America.
My research has included performing fieldwork (observation-participation, in-depth interviews, and focus groups) involving state decision-makers, academics, State and NGO practitioners, children, and families. I have also carried out extensive desk reviews of different types of bibliographic sources. You can see my research here.
I have a geographically diverse professional and educational background. Besides Argentina, I have worked and/or studied in Brazil, France, Hungary, Italy, Kazakhstan, New Zealand, and Portugal. Also, my research has led me to carry out fieldwork in Argentina, British Guyana, England, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Switzerland, The Netherlands, and the USA.
I’ve lived in Hungary since 2015, where I worked for two years as the Program and fundraising manager at the human rights organization Hungarian Helsinki Committee. Since I moved to Hungary, I’ve expanded my professional focus beyond children’s rights to the protection of asylum seekers and refugees. I did so through specialization courses and postgraduate diplomas at the International Institute of Humanitarian Law (on international refugee law), Odysseus Academic Network (on EU asylum and migration law) and Universidad de Buenos Aires (on asylum and migration in Latin America).
RECOMMENDATIONS / PRAISE
“I always admired her ability to engage with senior officials from governments and NGOs with confidence since she was young. Also, I am very proud of her recent achievements outside of RELAF, for they demonstrate how driven and hard-working she is. We continue to be friends at a distance, and I look forward to working with her again in the future!”
“Mara maintained a highly entrepreneurial and forward-looking attitude when she was in charge of the cooperation with global networks at RELAF. She has shown to be very responsible, well-trained, and greatly committed to the defense of the rights of children. During the nearly 6 years we worked together, Mara’s high level of professionalism was evident in her outstanding capacity to comprehend and analyze complex and problematic issues and her efforts to achieve the integration of RELAF into international networks.” [Translation of the original in Spanish].
“For one and a half years, I directed Mara in the elaboration of her dissertation research, which resulted in a high-quality piece of research. She proved to be highly independent and diligent, and she tackled the research process with a high level of maturity, discipline, and critical thinking. Also, she showed to be exceptionally hard-working and organized, and she was especially reliable when given tasks to fulfill for the research team.”
“I know her since she started working for Relaf, the Latin American Foster Care Network as a student. Ever since she showed creativity in developing ways to develop the network further and engaging with children and youth to incorporate their voices, she operated at a worldwide platform and represented the network in global meetings advocating for Latin America to be heard.”
“Mara is perhaps the most talented, skilled, and driven youth I’ve ever met and supervised. She did a great job in different areas at RELAF over the years I was her boss. Her professional advancement within RELAF over time was a sign of how driven she is towards learning and capitalizing on her experiences and knowledge. This is also the sign of how far she will go in her professional life.”
“Mara graduated in June 2017 from the two-year Master of Public Administration program at CEU in Budapest. Within this program, Mara came across as one of the most well-rounded talents of the cohort, since she combined sound professional skills with academic knowledge and curiosity. In addition to her academic achievements, I would like to highlight that Mara comes across as very dedicated to both learning and real-world impact.”
“Mara is a talented researcher. Her work was considered highly supportive, well-executed, and of high quality. She maintained a high level of professionalism during the documentation process, including organizing key respondent interviews and focus groups. She has strong written and presentation skills. She showed that she is adept at innovating and using technology to enhance the communication of complex information. She quickly integrated with the UNICEF team in Kazakhstan.”