#BehindTheAdvocacy: Meet Eliza Beckerman-Lee, a GNWP Peacebuilding Communications Intern from New York City. Eliza is currently pursuing her bachelor’s degree in Public Policy and Human Rights at the University of Chicago, and hopes to receive a Master’s in International Relations through their Committee on International Relations.
“From my very first day at GNWP, I was included in team discussions as an active participant and given meaningful tasks to work on, which is how I knew this internship would be different from any I’ve done before. I wasn’t looked down upon because I was “the new kid” or the youngest, and I have always felt comfortable asking questions if I’m confused or need clarification on a project. This warm welcome to GNWP made me immediately feel like a valued member of the team and encouraged me to put my all into every task I’ve been given.
On my second day at GNWP, I went to the UN with the other interns to interview Ambassador Chowdhury from Bangladesh, former President of the UN Security Council, about his work helping pass UNSCR 1325 almost 20 years ago! I was shocked to be included on a project with such an important speaker so soon, but GNWP has complete faith in its team – all of whom are extremely passionate and hardworking. I have since recorded a podcast for International Youth Day with three of our Young Women for Peace and Leadership who were visiting from the Philippines. Meeting these young women from different cultures who put themselves at risk to advocate for the inclusion and protection of other young women in peace negotiations, was an eye-opening and motivating discussion that I never would have had without the work of GNWP!
I was drawn to GNWP because of my long-time interest in human rights – especially women’s rights – and international relations, and was ecstatic to find a job where I could actively research and write about the intersection of these two areas. Before working at GNWP, however, I was unaware about the role, or lack thereof, women are given in peace processes and the evidence that proves the inclusion of women and children leads to longer-lasting, durable peace and security. Seeing how GNWP empowers these marginalized voices has inspired me to both study and publicize the role of women in conflict-affected areas in hopes of becoming an agent for change like the women GNWP works with on the local scale!”