It is such an honour and great joy to have become a part of the Central Asian Solidarity Groups (CAG). I first came across CAG last summer, after reading some very interesting blog posts on their website. In an attempt to learn more, I contacted the office to meet up with the EVS volunteers. Unfortunately, my summer schedule changed in a different direction and I was not able to travel to Malmo at that point. However, I did keep a close eye on the website to see if any future opportunities would arise for me to learn more about Central Asia, the context in which civil society operates there and about the work CAG does. You can guess my levels of enthusiasm when I spotted the project manager ad back in March! What a dream!

I’m originally from a tiny village in the depths of the forest in Smaland by the Baltic Sea coast. Curiosity has taken me to Scotland to complete an undergraduate degree in Political Science, through to London and Georgia to work with different NGOs on very diverse and interesting projects, ranging from interfaith and microfinance to education, civic engagement and sustainable development. I’ve been a part of organisations applying for external funding, as well as a part of organisations and a board which review funding applications. I’m also completing my MSc in Sustainable Development at SOAS University of London, which offers a brilliant distance study programme for NGO professionals worldwide. A very entertaining group of students I must say!

It is with curiosity and excitement that I’m joining CAG! I can’t wait to learn more as well as make my knowledge useful for the organisation, at least that is the intention.

Stay safe out there!

Maria