Atlas Corps celebrates its 15th anniversary! It is time to celebrate the achievements of our amazing network of over 1,100 leaders from 110 countries and share stories on the global impact of our Alumni, Fellows, and Scholars.
Today we speak with our Alumna Sadia (Class 18, Pakistan, Host: RESULTS Educational Fund), who is currently the Head of Chief Minister’s Strategic Communications Unit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa at UNDP Pakistan. Sadia shares with us how she has applied her passion and leadership skills towards global impact.
Sadia, we are truly inspired by and grateful for your impressive work towards promoting just governance as you advance the COVID-19 response in Pakistan. Thank you for sharing with us your global impact, as well as your personal and professional growth. We wish you the best with this impactful work!
Name: Sadia Ijaz
Home Country: Pakistan
Current Organization: United Nations Development Programme Pakistan
Role at current organization: Head of Chief Minister’s Strategic Communications Unit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Social Issues that you have worked with: Peace, justice and strong institutions, Quality education, Good health and well-being
Tell us about projects you have worked on?
I have been working with UNDP Pakistan on its Reforms and Governance project since November 2017 where I am currently the Head of Chief Minister’s Strategic Communications Unit (SCU) Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) with one of the UNDP’s Merged Areas Governance Project (MAGP). While in direct day-to-day contact with the Chief Minister’s Office, my work in this project has resulted in the significant buy-in for the mandate of the UNDP’s work in stabilization at the provincial level.
I am also part of the KP Risk Communications and Community Engagement (RCCE) Taskforce working for the COVID-19 response. I lead the COVID-19 response in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province which was recognized by the UNDP, the donor, and the government; Facebook Pakistan cited it as one of the best regional examples of effective communications during the pandemic. Throughout the pandemic my unit produced more than 180 videos and television commercials (TVCs) on COVID-19. During the second wave of the pandemic, our subsequent work went viral and received significant appreciation from both the government and the donor, leading to further funding. Because of this, I received two awards from the Government of KP and UNDP for going above and beyond the call of duty in exceptionally difficult circumstances during the COVID-19 emergency.
Why is it important for you to work with youth development projects?
I am passionate about child development through education, working for my communities in Pakistan and contributing to social issues. I feel proud that I am helping my people by doing a two-way communications between the citizens and the government. Although responding to the COVID-19 response was a difficult task, we did it very successfully.
How has Atlas Corps contributed to your professional and personal accomplishments?
The learning opportunities provided by Atlas Corps and my Host Organization, RESULTS Educational Funds, were impactful and helped me to empower and sustain my work in my communities in Pakistan.
What is your favorite Atlas Corps memory?
My participation as a speaker for volunteer and service at the Point of Light Conference in Houston, as well as the Welcome Party by Atlas Corps.
What advice do you have for applicants and current Fellows?
The experience you’ll get from the Atlas Corps Fellowship will be life-changing. It’ll help you develop personally, as well as professionally.
What message would you like to send to individuals who support Atlas Corps?
Thank you so much for supporting this life-changing Fellowship and providing me and other thousands of fellows from all across the world to get this life-enriching experience in the USA. Atlas Corps Fellowship has contributed a lot to my personal and professional development.
On November 20, Atlas Corps celebrates 15 years of engaging social change leaders. Join us to honor our legacy of service with more than 1,100 leaders from 110 countries at the Atlas Corps 15-Year Anniversary Gala. We will convene friends of Atlas Corps from all sectors and regions of the world to reflect on 15 years of engaging social changemakers and inspire towards our future. Join to connect with our community, meet Fellows, and celebrate Atlas Corps!
Photos from the personal archive of Sadia Ijaz