Within the framework of Save the Children Centenary year, we want to highlight key team members who have been contributing for years to the fulfillment of children's rights in Nicaragua. Raquel Wellcome, Awards and Budget coordinator in Nicaragua Country Office, has been working for SC for more than 20 years. In April, she is starting her new path in Save the Children in Guatemala Country Office, as finance coordinator in a food security project funded by USAID. Before leaving, we talked to her about her work at Save the Children in Nicaragua.
Raquel is an afro-descendant “wonder woman” from Bluefields, in Autonomous region of Southern Caribbean Coast in Nicaragua. Raquel is always happy and since 1998, with her contagious laugh, she has contributed to not only improve children and adolescents´ lifes in Nicaragua, but also the work environment in the office. She is really passionate and innate collaborator. We will miss her, but we are happy for this incredible opportunity to continue learning and contributing to the fulfilment of children's rights in Latin America and the Caribbean region.
What is your name, role, location and how long you have been working for Save the Children?
My name is Raquel Wellcome, Awards and Budget coordinator. I am located in finance department in Managua office. I had been working for Save the Children for little more than 20 years.
What programme, response or project are you working on?
In general, I have been working with the total portofolio, with funds from SC Norway (the funds that we have for more time). Then with SC USA, SC Spain, SC Canada, and European Union funds.
How does your work help the organisation and the children we work for?
Financial work is focused on internal controls to demonstrate to members and donors that we are implementing funds with transparency. We work on accountability processes to deliver to them clear accounts building trust in donors to continue the support with their funds. I put my two cents out there in order to support children and adolescents.
Why did you join Save the Children?
Previously, I always worked in private companies; I always wanted to work for a social cause, for a Humanitarian organization. It was my dream and the first opportunity was with Save the Children.
What is your greatest achievement in your time with Save the Children and why?
I have learned so much in these 20 years. I did not have that much consciousness before related to child rights and how to protect them. I am always learning about it. I like the cause of defending children´s rights. Now I know what I have to do if I see mistreated children, and before I did not have this perception, before I was not clear about what I should do, to whom I should go to when I saw these situations. I have learn to be always aware on what I can do to contribute for children’s rights and protection. I am happy for this.
What is your one hope for Save the Children in the future?
I hope Save the Children continues to maintained presence in the country with more contribution to keep up the good work of defending children’s rights, and to expand its coverage, being in more communities, reaching out to the most remote communities, which are the ones that most need it, always focused in our mission and vision.
Reflecting on your many years of service with Save the Children; in what way has Save the Children changed in the time you have worked here?
I have seen constantly many changes in structure and in the working way, systems updates. I started my collaboration with Save the Children in Save the Children Norway. Then there was unified presence with Save the Children US and Save the Children Canada. After this, the transition in 2012, with process of hiring, I stayed as part of the team, for more than 20 years, and now I am continuing working for Save the Children in Guatemala.
What was your first role with Save the Children?
When I started to work for Save the Children, I had review accountability process and accompanying partners, always in finance area. Although the tasks have been changing, those were the main ones. Now that I am working for Guatemala Country Office from April, I am going to administer the food security project; I am going to dedicate 100%, tracking food inventories. It will be a little bit different job but always in the area of finance. This is an opportunity to learn new things, I am happy.