Name: Brieanna Scolaro
Role: United Nations Online Volunteer, Communications Team, GNDR
About me: Currently, I lead programming and communications for a mental health company in New York City. We focus on using innovative technology like Virtual Reality to help people overcome mental health challenges. I’ve been involved with disaster response work at the local and global level since I organized my first disaster relief trip in 2009. Since then, I have dedicated my career to making the world a better place. I have responded first hand to 10 disasters, completed a Fellowship with the Shelter Unit at IOM in Geneva, and advocated for human rights at the UN in New York. I come with a background in psychology and a Masters in Social Work with a focus on program planning and international social welfare. In school, my interest was in trying to understand the long term psychological consequence of disasters on school-age children.
Interest working with GNDR: It has been my pleasure to volunteer with GNDR since January 2018. In this time, I have been helping the Communications Team to write and edit newsletters, blog posts and other communications. I was also given the opportunity to help with the social media strategy for the 2018 Global Summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Volunteering with GNDR keeps me involved in the global disaster risk reduction space, both at the civil society and UN level. I made it a point to thoroughly read and absorb the information from each blog post or website page that I review. This helps me to stay up to date on the most important themes coming from the grassroots, national and regional level and flag groups or initiatives I’d like to learn more about.
Career aspirations: My hope is that volunteering with GNDR will also help me reach my career goal, which is to transition from my work in mental health programming into a career with the United Nations. In particular, I want to use my knowledge of mental health and psychology to help humanitarian and human rights initiatives further incorporate the perspectives of all people. In addition to this coordination and response work, I’d like to advocate for these approaches at the policy and national / global level. I believe that the more we align initiatives and policies with the actual wants and needs of local populations, the better we will be able to move from a response model to one of prevention and sustainability.