Catherine MenéndezEl Salvador (Host: Glasswing International USA)
Catherine Menéndez is a passionate communications specialist who seeks to create a positive impact in the world through her work in media. With over 10 years of experience in the fields of marketing, communications and media, Catherine graduated in Journalism and Communications in 2014. She had the opportunity to coordinate and lead volunteers for FUNTER, a non-profit organization in El Salvador, that provides therapy for people with health conditions or impairments. Previously, she was the spokesperson for APROASA, the local dog shelter in her hometown. One of her most notable achievements was developing The Anual Fundraiser in 2010, which continues on to this day. Since then, she has had the opportunity to work with several organizations in the non-profit sector. Catherine has gained skills in marketing, advertising, public relations, creative writing, social media, storytelling and human resources through her years of work within the private sector. At the moment, Catherine remains committed to providing proper education and resources for the youth in El Salvador and supporting the efforts of local and international initiatives by assisting with strategies, communication plans, and creating compelling campaigns to raise awareness on how education is the key to enhance the quality of life for all human beings, especially the ones below the poverty line in El Salvador, where she grew up. At the same time, she supports the collaboration of local entrepreneurs and companies from her country in the development of social corporate programs, creating better opportunities for people and encouraging leadership in them and in their communities.
Host Organization: Glasswing International USA
Role at Host Organization: At Glasswing International USA, Catherine will be serving as the Partnerships & Marketing Fellow. She will work side-by-side with senior staff to gain practical experience in business development, client relations, and marketing by using customer questionnaires and focus groups to support Glasswing’s customer database, collaborating closely with the US Communications team and Strategic Partnerships team, and helping to develop and execute marketing strategies with target audiences. Catherine will play an important role in further developing relationships with key stakeholders at Glasswing, including partners and current/potential clients.
Karla Cecilia GuerraEl Salvador (Host: The Unity Council)
Karla has five years of experience in the nonprofit sector, having earned a Bachelor’s in Laws, a Postgraduate in Family Law Procedures and a Diploma in International Humanitarian Law with a focus on Crimes against Humanity from El Salvador’s University. Previously, Karla worked as a Project Assistance and Case Manager for the International Organization for Migration under the United States Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP), performing activities directly related to children in risk, migrant populations, refugees and parolees. Karla worked with IOM’s Child Protection Department, providing support in different tasks and legal translations of high confidential cases from the UNHCR. Prior to that Karla worked as Judicial Assistant in a Trial Court and in the Appeals Chamber of a Criminal Court, where she gained experience working with human rights, gender, children and family rights. She has worked as a founder, leader and volunteer of the nonprofit Organization Milagros de Amor in El Salvador, where she ran charity events and helped her community address concerns and perform animal welfare activities. Karla is very interested in international legal matters related to animal welfare, sexual and human rights, migration and children.
Host Org: The Unity Council
Fellow role at The Unity Council: Karla will serve as a Policy Advisor Fellow, conducting research, developing communications and presentations, and interfacing with a variety of partners and stakeholders. She will act as the proxy for the CEO.
Ernesto ZelayandiaEl Salvador (Host: Human Rights Campaign)
Ernesto has three years of experience in the nonprofit sector and earned a Bachelor´s Degree of Law from the Jose Simeon Canas school of The University of Central America in 2011. After graduation, he volunteered with El Salvador’s first LGBT legal clinic which inspired him to pursue a career on Human Rights activism. In 2012, Ernesto volunteered and partnered with several LGBTI organizations from the Salvadoran civil society, and became a founding member of the AMATE initiative: a project to recover and preserve the historical memory of the LGBT movement in El Salvador. As coordinator for the Global School program of Foundation Cristosal, a faith based human rights organization, Ernesto developed field courses to better understand development from a human rights approach. Through these experiences, Ernesto gained a working knowledge of social justice, grassroots organizations, learning through popular education, and human rights and equality advocacy. He also has experience facilitating dialogue and intercultural exchange between Salvadoran and North American communities. In the future, Ernesto wants to pursue a career in human rights advocacy and law.
Host Organization: Human Rights Campaign
Role at Host Organization: Ernesto will serve at the Human Rights Campaign on the “A la Familia Program” a bilingual project that promotes inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people within communidades Latinas. He will also provide support on a research project on the export of Homophobia from religious groups from within the U.S.
Edward LópezEl Salvador (Host: Solstice)
Edward has ten years of professional experience in web development and marketing for nonprofit organizations. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree of Computer Science from Jose Matias Delgado University in 2009, and a second bachelor’s degree in Marketing in 2014. In 2008, he started working for the National Center of Cleaner Production of El Salvador, where he has developed many projects in computer science areas aimed at increasing the efficacy of enterprises and saving natural resources like energy, water and oil. He has extensive experience in different kinds of web technologies, data bases, and marketing strategies. In the last ten years, Edward has developed web applications for the government, banks and for-profit organizations, and nonprofits alike. In addition to his work in renewable energy, recycling, market studies, and green marketing, he has experience in e-commerce working at a startup that sells t-shirts with a social message. In the future, Edward wants to pursue a Master’s degree in web security and continue working in entrepreneurship.
Host Organization: Solstice
Role at Host Organization: Edward will serve as a “design-geneer” to lead UI/UX, front-end design, and contribute to the overall development effort of the organization’s web-based solar marketplace and customer engagement platform.