Nov 15 2018
Born in Ecuador and raised in Austin, CASA volunteer Paulina Artieda has always been passionate about upholding the value of diversity in her community, her career, and in her volunteer role. Most recently, Paulina has become a founding board member of The New Philanthropists, an organization focused on diversifying nonprofit boards with leaders of color.
Paulina's journey to understanding the importance of preserving culture began at an early age after immigrating to the United States. "I was 5 years old when I moved. I only knew how to say 'hi.'" And there was no one close by to help Paulina with the language barrier, either: "The school that I was assigned to didn't have any bilingual teachers, so I had to get on a bus and ride 30-40 minutes each way. This personal experience later helped me recognize the need for children to have people around them who really can understand their cultural needs.”
Despite the challenges of starting a new life in a new country, Paulina has watched her family grow through her brother, her two sisters and their children; as well as through the friendships she's made here. "Anyone who's a close friend of mine knows what I'm involved in and where my heart is. We share lives and we share moments."
After graduating from the University of Texas with a Bachelor of Science in Advertising (and studying abroad in Spain), Paulina moved to Chicago to work as an Advertising Art Director and a bilingual copywriter. Eventually making her way back to Austin, she became a Creative Director and has worked with advertising agencies for the last 15 years. In 2015, Paulina decided to go into business for herself as a Creative Strategist contractor. "Now I can create my own schedule and I can choose the clients I'd like to work with. I enjoy the freedom and flexibility that comes with my role as a Creative." Paulina especially loves working with nonprofits who have creative needs but are unable to hire a full agency.
In addition to helping found The New Philanthropists, Paulina has participated in South by Southwest panels for the last several years by sharing about the importance of the digital platform in multicultural markets.
Paulina has also recently become a dog mom by rescuing a year-old puppy from Del Rio this past summer. This experience has made her "an advocate for rescuing dogs instead of buying them." In her free time, Paulina loves to travel and read. "I always try to have a small library in my house!"
Not long after going into business for herself, Paulina decided to become a CASA volunteer; something she had heard and thought about for several years. "Once I was able to balance my life better with work, I decided I wanted to take this on. I wanted to give back and involve myself in a project that was a bit more in depth and meaningful - something where I could make a difference over time."
Paulina has now been CASA volunteer for the last 2 and-a-half years and has spent the whole time on one case that was in desperate need of a bilingual volunteer to help communicate with a placement who only spoke Spanish. But Paulina wholeheartedly believes that sharing a culture with the boy on her case goes beyond language. "We understand each other; from the food he likes, how we celebrate holidays and even his relationships with his friends," explains Paulina. "These are the reasons why it's important for people of color to volunteer for programs like CASA."
Paulina believes CASA has such an impact because of the support volunteers give to kids in a variety of areas - specifically their emotional health, their platform, and their representation. "That type of support to me is key. The need for volunteers that are reflective of the kids and of the community is what brought me to CASA."
November 2018 October 2018 September 2018 August 2018 July 2018 June 2018 May 2018 April 2018 March 2018 February 2018 January 2018 December 2017 November 2017 October 2017 September 2017 August 2017 July 2017 June 2017 May 2017 April 2017 March 2017 February 2017 January 2017 December 2016 November 2016 October 2016 September 2016 August 2016 July 2016 June 2016 May 2016 April 2016 March 2016 February 2016 January 2016 November 2015 October 2015 September 2015 August 2015 July 2015 June 2015 May 2015 April 2015 March 2015 February 2015 January 2015 December 2014 November 2014 October 2014 September 2014