As a Program Officer of the CAMY Fund, Melissa supports youth partner organizations and manages the distribution of grants for the social justice portfolio.
Melissa is a Costa Rican feminist and human rights activist.
Before joining the SIF team, she collaborated with Colectiva por el Derecho a Decidir (“Collective for the Right to Decide”) in Costa Rica, where she led different projects for the promotion and defense of sexual and reproductive rights of women and gestational carriers.
She has worked in her home country and in the Dominican Republic on municipal development projects supporting local governments for the improvement of citizen participation mechanisms from a gender and youth perspective. Through these projects, she has incorporated the experiences and needs of women in public roles as a fundamental part of local planning.
She has a degree in Political Science from the University of Costa Rica (UCR) and is pursuing a specialization in Public Policy and Gender Justice at the Latin American Council of Social Sciences (CLACSO). She has training in feminist urbanism, gender-based violence, feminist movements in Latin America and the Caribbean, and public policy evaluation.
She has been a teacher and facilitator in several educational contexts, and has supported advocacy strategies of grassroots community organizations, women’s organizations, youth and people with disabilities.
As a feminist, I highly value the opportunity to support the resistance and organization of young people in Central America and Mexico. This possibility has led me to understand that through the respect for autonomy, the promotion of care, and development of critical discussions, we can support youth to achieve their full potential.