GCWA: Meheret (Mimi) Melles joins the GCWA advisory group
Meheret (Mimi) Melles serves as a member of the International Working Group of Youth RISE, an international, youth-led network of young people committed to a right-based approach to evidence-based information and services, harm reduction and drug policy reform. Youth RISE aims to raise the voices of young people affected by drug policy, those who use drugs and those who seek to empower them to advocate for policies and programs that reflect the realities of young people’s lives.
Mimi previously served as International Project Manager at Advocates for Youth, an organization based in Washington, D.C, focused on adolescent sexual and reproductive health. In this position, for five years, she helped build the capacity of youth-driven organizations in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean and Asia to empower young people to be powerful advocates within their own countries and at international forums. Most intensively, Mimi provided technical assistance to youth-led organizations in Ethiopia, Nigeria, Jamaica and Nepal to advocate for better domestic policies in their own countries, U.S. foreign policy and at UN high-level meetings. In addition, Mimi has helped leverage youth participation at over thirty regional and international meetings and conferences, served on several working groups/coalitions, published many works and managed a monthly international online newsletter that reached approximately 2,000 members around the world.
Mimi also has three years of experience volunteering for HIPS (Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive) where she conducted outreach to provide empowerment, holistic education, harm reduction and crisis services to sex workers and people whom use drugs in Washington, D.C.
Mimi holds a Bachelor degree in Anthropology with double minor in International Development and Public Health at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is currently studying her Masters at EHESP French School of Public Health in Paris.