Meet Amanda Fernandes: A Q&A with our New Grants
Why did you want to work for Thousand Currents? What made you apply to the organization?
Grassroots organizations are the ones doing the work needed for humanity and the planet to survive. There are so many struggles that require their attention and these can shift very quickly. When these things happen, as it recently did with the pandemic of COVID-19, as a grantmaker, it is our job and responsibility to support our partners and not add to their burden. When I heard about the opening at Thousand Currents, I started researching about the organization and I was really interested about its long-term and unrestricted funding approach. That, along with the list of respected partner organizations and a very inspiring mission, made me apply for the position. Coming from an organization focused on land issues, I was also very excited about the opportunity to expand and work and learn about food sovereignty and economic justice.
What will be your new role at Thousand Currents?
My role at Thousand Currents as Grants Operations Manager is to support the Grants Operations team with grantmaking processes, making sure that our partners can receive the funds they need in a timely manner, and being available to connect and support them along the process. If we can operate smoothly, it means we can move more funds and not only support our partners better, but also expand our portfolio of partners.
What gifts do you hope to share in your new role?
In my new role, I hope to share my organizational skills and help streamline processes to ensure that the funds get to our partners as smoothly as possible. But most of all, I hope to bring some of the warmth of my home country and a culturally sensitive approach to my work to be able to build relationships with my team and with our partners. I believe I am well-positioned to do this work as a Brazilian living in North America, and as a grants operations professional with an academic background in Social Sciences.
What is your vision or hope for the communities you work with and the work you’re doing?
My hope for the communities that we work with is that one day our work becomes redundant, which would mean that reparations have been made and that we all can enjoy a dignified life.
What do you do when you are not working at Thousand Currents?
In my spare time, I love reading, playing with my kid and spending time with my husband, and trying to keep active by exercising (whether that means just going for a walk, yoga or spinning classes). I love traveling and discovering new cuisines (which has been more limited these days). I also try to challenge myself into learning new things, such as sewing (mostly superhero costumes for my little one).