Executive Assistant SOS Children's Villages in Brazil
Back to our origin
It was in 2009 that I first partook in a brand awareness workshop given by our continental brand advisor. This workshop started with the background of our organisation and how it was established. One of the tools used was a historical video presentation. That was when I first had the opportunity to watch a video of Hermann Gmeiner talking. I felt a connection, a bond to his history and to his work.
After this brand orientation the national office of Brazil decided to form a group to do this kind of brand orientation seminars throughout our country. I decided to take part in this group. First, I translated the presentation into Portuguese, because it was in Spanish, and employed my motivation and determination to visit as many of our villages as possible. It was really great to be in the villages and feel the inspiring atmosphere.
Once at a seminar a co-worker said, “This is the first time a person from the national association comes to the programme just to motivate us, to tell how important our work is and how each one of us counts. Normally NA co-workers come to give us new guidelines, policies, rules or to tell us how we should work.” This testimony impacted me a lot, and made me more determined to continue the task of strengthening our identity.
After that came the brand book and the key messages that were also translated and became our starting point for each and every brand orientation to new co-workers. As time passed by and the financial crises came, it was even more crucial to keep in mind our mission and our vision. It became important that every co-worker feels the pride as well as the responsibility of working in an organisation that is a social movement. The national brand team little by little stepped away and I remained alone in this journey.
Working as executive assistant to the national director, responsible also for the strategic planning and information, working at a desk and away from the children, I feel the need to visit, whenever possible, the programmes and see the results of our work.
Yara Lanfredi de Andrade
is Executive Assistant SOS Children's Villages in Brazil.
Professional life: After 20 years working with international commerce, I followed my husband in an expatriated opportunity to Venezuela. It was during my 3 year stay there that I came into close contact with the NGO world. I fell in love with helping children, vulnerable children, by assisting in an institutional orphanage. On return to Brazil, I had no choice but to work in the third sector. Then I began to work for SOS Children’s Villages Brazil, at the Sponsorship Department where I worked for two years. Later on, I coordinated the national strategic planning, and am also a member of the national team for the SOS brand in Brazil. Today I am responsible for information and reports sent to the International Office in Innsbruck, Austria.
Family: I have been married for 35 years. My family is my balance and my safe harbor. I am blessed with two children who now live far away in other cities; happy enough, there is the telephone. I have two friends who have become family to me. After so many years at SOS Children’s Villages Brazil, it is exciting seeing and experiencing how many co-workers go from colleagues to acquaintances, to friends and now to my very own SOS family.
Society: I believe strongly in the credo that to hope for change in others, one must first be him or herself the change. By being examples of ethics and transparency, we can spread positive attitudes. I am taught to respect all political opinions; still I firmly stand against bribes, lies, forgery, pirating, and exploitation of children and of illegal immigrants. In my personal time I assist other NGOs.
I love it spending leisure time with the people I love. I love to travel, preferably with my husband, visiting new places, having new experiences and seeing new cultures. Reading and going to the movies are hobbies I like very well. I am also an animal lover. I find their unconditional affection and attachment very touching. Handle a pet with respect and protection and experience such rich rewarding moments like a puppy tail-wag!