Undisturbed calmness of mind is attained by cultivating friendliness toward the happy, compassion for the unhappy, delight in the virtuous, and indifference toward the wicked.
LISTEN TO THE PODCAST TO KNOW WHY BEENA IS AN IMPRESSIVE EMPRESS
Beena is a seasoned development professional with 24 years of progressively responsible work experience with technical and managerial expertise in the field of Adolescent Development and Participation, Reproductive Health, HIV/AIDS and Child Protection. Possesses a deep understanding of programme development, programme management policy and research. Has strong experience in managing teams, building strategic partnerships with governments, national stakeholders, UN agencies, NGOs and academia for delivering programme results, policy development and resource mobilization.
Since 2015, as Chief of Adolescent Development and Participation (ADAP), Beena has been leading the second decade programme in UNICEF Thailand country office. She was instrumental in transitioning HIV programme into a full-fledged adolescent development and participation section – starting from evidence generation to the development of country programme and its implementation. Her key responsibilities included evidence driven programming, research, development of partnerships, influencing and promoting adolescent specific policies, fundraising and setting up of innovative initiatives and demonstration projects and their scale up in the areas of reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, mental health, skill development, participation and path to employability of adolescents and young people.
Additional responsibilities taken up include Gender Focal Point, Peer Support Volunteer, representing UNICEF in Inter-agency and UN taskforces, Joint AIDS programme, UN Gender task force and various National Committees on HIV and teenage pregnancy prevention.
As a child, she was very active and energetic in co-curricular activities during her school and university days – participating in dance, debates, theatre, NCC and actively holding leadership options in those years. Taking life’s ups and downs in her stride, she faces life as it comes . She strongly believes in possibilities and always trusts goodness of people. She is proud to be woman- a daughter, sister, mother and friend to many.
ACHIEVEMENTS / AWARDS RECEIVED
- She developed UNICEF’s ADAP programme strategy and management plan for the first time in the country Thailand.
- As a HIV Specialist, she has developed, scaled up and managed a full-fledged Children & AIDS Programme in three of the largest field offices in India
- She played a key role in emergency response, diversification of the programme and system strengthening and development of new partnerships as part of the Child Protection Programme at UNICEF.
- She has lead researches on Adolescent SITAN; Review of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in the country; Evaluation of Youth Friendly Health Services; Teenage pregnancy and Alternative care of children SITAN. The review of comprehensive sexuality education in the country- was identified as one of the best researches in UNICEF in 2017.
- She has advocated and influenced policies related to Adolescent health, Teenage pregnancy prevention ACT2016, introduction of Pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV in the country.
- She was instrumental in developing pilot initiatives and their scale up for setting standards of health care in juvenile justice systems for children who are in conflict with law.
- In partnerships with the government and UN agencies, she developed online capacity development training for reduction of stigma and discrimination in the healthcare setting as well as sexuality education for teachers.
- She facilitated the development of National PREP implementation guideline for Adolescents.
- She developed multiple proposals and mobilized strategic private sector partnerships and funds.
- She worked with street and working children in promoting their rights, sexual and reproductive health and mental health, prior to working at UNICEF.
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In this conversation, we discuss about
- Beena’s various roles as a woman and a leader
- Her ways of handling challenges
- About her influencers
- Mental health issues of adolescents and ways of handling them
- her mental exercises that help her stay resilient
- How to deal with the uncertainties in life
- Her definition of success
- Skills that makes one ready to be a social worker