Nationality

Pakistan

Education

Master’s Degree in Public Administration, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan

Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce, Bahauddin Zakarya University, Multan, Pakistan

Certificate of Emergency Preparedness Core Competencies for All Public Health Workers, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, United States

Languages

English, Arabic, Urdu, Punjabi

My passion for serving people in need stems from my family. When I was young, I would sit with my siblings listening attentively as the elders shared their life stories. My family survived 1947, the year that marked the creation of the Dominion of Pakistan (which was later divided into modern-day Pakistan and Bangladesh). It was a volatile period for most civilians. There were times when my grandparents couldn’t find anything to eat for days. They lost many family members during that crisis. Listening to stories about the suffering they endured, I began to develop this idea of serving people who have survived devastating situations.

I understood the importance of logistics and information at a relatively young age because my father was a community coordinator, and I learned by observing his work. I pursued a Master’s Degree in Public Administration and started my career working with humanitarian organizations in Pakistan. I stayed on this path for eight years, until I had the opportunity to work with Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) at the Dagahaley Refugee Camp in Kenya. My responsibilities involved logistics and procurement support to ensure there was a continuous supply of materials to the MSF programme in the camp. I worked as hard as I could to help the refugees, most of whom had fled war in Somalia. I stayed there until I was recruited by the United Nations in 2011.

It was my dream to work for the United Nations because I believe it is the foremost platform for devoting oneself to humanity. But it wasn’t easy. I had to work very hard to improve my credentials to be eligible to join the Organization. I sought advice from experienced professionals, took online courses, and applied for positions. No matter how hard it was, I kept on trying—and here I am now, working for the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) as an Associate Logistics Officer, my second post in the Organization.

My current job focuses on the response to the crisis that began in December 2013 in South Sudan. UNMISS protects civilians, monitors human rights, and supports the implementation of the cessation of hostilities agreement. But this is only the first step. For the entire system to work, commitment is required from South Sudan entities, as well as support from the United Nations and the international community. Together, we build facilities and develop capacity to help civilians who have lost their homes and their loved ones. My main responsibility is to gather and analyze information. A typical day starts with getting in touch with other sections of the Mission to gather information needed to facilitate further decision-making.

I consider myself to be extremely lucky because my family has been the source of my passion and has helped me pave my career path. I get enormous satisfaction, honour and pride from my work. The idea of bringing hope to people like my grandparents who were once desperately in need of help sustains my inner peace.

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