Mónica Martins is a Portuguese entrepreneur who has lived and worked in Spain and Portugal, promoting scientific and cultural projects in different European cities.
In March 2014, she moved to Edinburgh to participate in the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs.
Currently, all international projects organised by Mónica are promoted by her company Theorem: Professional Conference Organisers, in partnership with researchers from European universities.
Monica loves animals, going for walks, living in Scotland, meeting new people, her friends from all over the world, music, books, and spending time in alone in silence.
Photographer, Filmaker &
Who is Kat?
Kat Dlugosz was born in Poland but has lived in the UK for 12 years, making Scotland her home.
She is just graduating from Edinburgh Napier University with a degree in Photography. She is involved in DECAGRAM collective as a head of video production. Her interest in photography and filmmaking comes hand in hand with an interest and engagement in issues of social, racial and gender equality, which we still should actively fight for.
Belén is an Uruguayan journalist with a master’s degree in gender studies and public policies. She was born in Montevideo, lived in Seville, Barcelona, and moved to Edinburgh in 2017.
The topics she investigated through the past four years were about sexual violence against women during the Uruguayan military coup and the design and implementation of social care systems in different welfare states context. Both investigations were written and analyzed with a feminist methodology. The first research took a year, and the final results gave her the conviction that she wanted to dedicate her work to do something in between journalism and gender issues. That conviction took her to Barcelona, with a 2-year master degree challenge, trying to understand more about the feminist agenda.
Even though she choose to start a new life in Scotland, she is always in touch with her family and friends back home, on the riverside of Río de la Plata. She is obsessed with anything that has chocolate on top.
Journalist in residence
Who is Natalia Bonilla?
Natalia Bonilla is international female leadership & business strategy coach, conflict journalist and news producer with more than 10 years of experience in 12 countries. She holds a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Puerto Rico, a M.A. in International Relations from the University of York, a Pg.Dp. in Peace and Conflict Journalism from the Autonomous University of Barcelona.
You can follow Natalia on Facebook @nataliabonillaprojects, Instagram @nataliabonillainc and @luminainc.
Author, public speaker, philanthropist
Who is Chantal?
Chantal Mrimi is an author, public speaker and civil servant, bachelor in Administration Management by Abertay University, and bachelor in Politics, Philosophy and Economics by the Open University, both in Scotland. Chantal’s work experience includes working with statistics in UNHCR in order to manage and deliver on refugee’s needs, and over 400 hours of interpreting work in Swahili and Lingala for Congolese refugees in Glasgow, between 2004 and 2007. Chantal has more than 18 years of experience in developing philanthropic and charity work, and she is the founder of the Rwanda Outreach Project, and of a Sponsorship Program whereby Scottish families sponsor bright children from poor background to go to school. So far, 39 children have been educated at secondary level and 6 graduated. In 2018, she was awarded ‘Scottish Woman of the Year’ for her philanthropic work, with subsequent congratulatory motion at the Scottish Parliament.
Chantal is also a public and motivational speaker, as well as an experienced essayist and poet, and published her autobiography ‘The journey of my life from Rwanda’ in 2007.
Maria Garcia Tena
Who is Maria?
María García (Spain) is Known for her natural creative flair, hard working and willingness to help others.
She is graduate in Graphic Design. Her passion for this job borns by the desire of transmitting ideas, concepts and emotions to people.
Nowadays, she lives in Edinburgh, city where she is developing herself as a professional, taking part in diverse cultural projects.
Her last achievement was winning the Events Scotland Logo Contest. Now, her logo is the graphic identity for 2016, Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design marketing campaign in Scotland.
Ntombizifikile (Fikile) Mkoyana is an African woman. She identifies herself as a proud and privileged individual who was well nourished with love and care by her late parents; especially her mother, umama uMaradebe. Being born; brought up and most importantly, educated to a level of a Professional Nurse (Registered Nurse) in the rural areas of former Transkei (in South Africa) is a bonus. It is that education that made her marketable to the globe.
She is a mother to many, had cooked and fed homeless people, sponsored children in Ethiopia, organised Christmas parties for orphans and organised tertiary education scholarships for underprivileged children in her rural areas (today six are financial independent undergraduates). Additionally, five girls benefitted for Maths & Science High School Scholarships. She is also a local STEM ambassador as well as a community builder.
In the UK she served as the Royal College of Nursing Representative (RCN) for four years before leaving bedside nursing. She was a Shadow Cllr for Operation Black Vote. She is a founder of the African Nurses Support Services which she served for 14 years helping many nurses from all backgrounds. During that period, she engaged many structures like NHS, the Royal College of Nursing, NMC and many more. She is a researcher who had authored papers for three different international conferences (two for South Africa and one for the UK). She had conducted one workshop in an African University, the theme of her teaching was, “Non-communicable diseases and the state purse”
Fikile had an opportunity to serve the UK Foreign Office Chevening Scholarship Programme; she was privileged to be afforded a position as a Regional Assessor for Southern Africa (was allocated 6 countries). She studied law and international relations, and then advanced her studies in human rights and international conflict.
Ntombizifikile understands that, women and children become more vulnerable during any wars. She aims to have the African women engaged, with their voice making a positive contribution. To her womanhood is about peace, being a caretaker that strives to bring up descent citizens from all nations. In 1995, City Press Newspaper in South African awarded her a Cert as a Community Builder of the year. In 2002, was awarded a Humanitarian Award in London.
Fikile is now focusing to help as a Chief Advisory Consultant for the Global Support Services Consultancy.
Representative in Portugal
Who is Maria?
Maria João Medeiros is and External Relations Ambassador and Communications Intern at Womenbeing. She started interning with Womenbeing in September 2017 focusing on creating blog content, interviewing interesting women for our page, supporting new members of the team and creating new ways for the company’s strategy plan.
She is a post graduate in Human Rights and Languages and International Relations (German and English). At the moment she finishing her masters in International Relations – Peace, Security and Development Studies at the Faculty of Economics in Coimbra, Portugal. During the first year she was an online and offline campaign with her colleagues focusing on deconstruction stereotypes related to race, gender and inequality in general. In this project she was the Public Relations Manager.
She choose Womenbeing as the organization to do her internship due to her passion to connect human and gender rights with education and local work. Her thesis includes gender and politics in Scotland towards gender equality changes.
During her bachelor’s degree she had the opportunity to do Erasmus in Heidelberg, Germany for a year and after she worked as a sales representative for two years amplifying her knowledge of sales, costumer service and international and cultural connection due to a lot of international travel including 5 months in the United States.
Representative in Mexico
Who is Irelyd?
Irelyd is a mexican internationalist researcher who has been working in projects of sustainability and food security for UN Agencies as FAO and UNDP.
She’s a passionate for gender issues and international affairs. She discovered her vocation for gender issues when she was working for UNDP where gender issues have always been a priority when it comes to implement projects with a high social impact in order to promote gender equality between the target population as well as increase the way that women participate inside society.
She has a BA degree in International Relations from Autonomous University of Puebla and she just finished her Master in International Affairs in Anáhuac University in Mexico city specialized in International Security. Currently she is developing her Master thesis about the participation of women in political and statebuildingprocesses in Bosnia and Herzegovina in Post-Dayton era basing her research lines on women empowerment, deconstructing gender stereotypes, Agenda 2030 United Nations as well as closing the gender gap in post-conflict scenarios. She will love to replicate their knowledges through initiatives ad hoc in Mexico and contributing to create a more inclusive society with gender approach closing the gender the gap salary according to the principles of “equal pay for equal work”.
You can follow Irelyd on Twitter and Instagram as @ir3lyd
Feminist Silent Book Club Coordinator
Who is Ania?
Ânia Ferreira is a graduate in Languages, Literatures and Cultures from the University of Lisbon.
In 2015, she moved to Edinburgh to explore new opportunities and to expand her horizons of perception. She then decided to challenge herself once more and went back to University to study Web Design and Development. Her interest in gender related inequalities came from not only her own experiences as a woman, but from observation, a place of empathy and the need and willingness to help others to feel the power of their own voices and abilities that are so often negated to women in the world.
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