Thursday, August 23, 2012

Behind the Scenes: Jobs@GSUSA

Once a month, we show how our readers a behind-the-scenes look at our work here at Girl Scouts' national headquarters. Each month, we spotlight employees from different departments and the work they do to serve our 3.2 million members. This month our Social Media Intern, Elizabeth Venere, interviewed Hispanic and Underserved Markets Consultant, Vanessa Faxas.

Vanessa Faxas is proud of Girl Scouts’ 300,000 Latina members. Because, as the Hispanic and Underserved Markets Consultant, Vanessa's job is to work with councils to activate more Latina girls and volunteers. She also collaborates with various GSUSA departments to find new ways to engage girl members and support the volunteers who work with them. And she helps develop GSUSA’s Spanish-language resources, including a new series of starter books for Spanish-speaking girls and volunteers and upcoming video tutorials for councils that will demonstrate successful membership practices within the Hispanic community.

Vanessa has always been dedicated to helping underserved communities and developing youth leadership. She knows she was fortunate when she was growing up, because she had a support network that encouraged her to pursue her dreams. That led her to study social work at Ramapo College of New Jersey, and then go on to the Ivy League for graduate work: Columbia University’s School of Social Work. Vanessa also holds a Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate from Georgetown University and continues to learn and hone her skills every day.

Working for Girl Scouts is a perfect way for Vanessa to make a positive impact on the lives of Hispanic girls and their families. She spends most of her time on the “grassroots” nature of her work, which requires building awareness and trust within communities, getting people who may never have heard about Girl Scouts to be passionate about our mission, and ensuring that those who prefer Spanish resources have the tools they need.

In spite of challenges along the way, Vanessa’s greatest satisfaction comes from seeing councils brainstorm and test innovative ways to grow membership and, in doing so, ensure that all girls—and especially Latinas—have the chance to experience Girl Scouting. Vanessa says she’s lucky to work for an organization that matches her own values and beliefs . . . one that gives all girls the opportunity to be leaders

Elizabeth Venere is not only our social media intern, but also a Girl Scout Gold Award recipient entering her junior year of college this fall. She provides GSUSA with awesome social media content.