My name is Isabela, I am 23 years old, and I am of American and Ecuadorian nationality. I left the United States in July of 2016 to join the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme to explore how youth are contributing to the development of my second home, Ecuador.
This is how I got to participate in the First Regional Meeting of Youth Volunteer Networks in Cuenca, where I had the opportunity to interact with young volunteers from Latin America and learn how volunteering contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the region.
This week, Habitat III, the third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development is taking place in Quito, Ecuador, to establish a sustainable Urban Agenda for cities as we work towards achieving the Global Goals.
Pedernales, Ecuador: Since April 2015, I worked as a UN Volunteer Public Policy Specialist in the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN WOMEN) country office in Quito. However, one day my responsibilities shifted in a totally unexpected way.
Quito, Ecuador: Women in all parts of the world suffer violence and discrimination. They are under-represented in political and economic decision-making processes. They lack access to decent work, face gender gaps and are often denied access to basic education and health care. UN WOMEN is trying to address these global challenges.
I am serving as a UN Volunteer Specialist in Democracy, Civil Society and Public Administration in the UN WOMEN country office in Quito, Ecuador, where I work in the area of women's leadership and political participation.
International Volunteer Day (IVD), mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on the 5th of December. This International Day is a unique chance for volunteers and organizations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities, and the private sector.
On 5 December we celebrate International Volunteer Day (IVD) 2014 - Make change happen, volunteer!
This year, on this very special day, the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme not only celebrates and recognizes volunteerism in all its facets, but pays special tribute to the participation of people in making change at all levels locally, nationally and globally. For IVD 2014, please join us in acknowledging and enhancing peoples participation, engagement and voice, in shaping and implementing development policies and the world we want.
Quito, Ecuador: Around one thousand young people from Quito, but also other parts of Ecuador and even Colombia, Cuba, Denmark, Germany, Spain and Venezuela, gathered on an August 2013 weekend to celebrate the largest alternative music festival in Ecuador. It was a great start into my year as a UN Youth Volunteer and provided an excellent opportunity to discuss development challenges with young people that hold the future in their hands.
Quito, Ecuador: As a UN Youth Volunteer in Gender Analysis, assigned to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Office of the Resident Coordinator in Quito, Ecuador, I support and advise the Resident Coordinator and the United Nations Country Team on gender-related advocacy, communications and resource mobilization.