The testimony of Anna Lucia Corfiati

Anna Lucia: her experience in Albania

My name is Anna Lucia Corfiati and I am one of the winners of the René Cassin Prize 2012 edition, thanks to my master's thesis focused on the employment rights of detainees in Italian and European legislation. The following year I had the opportunity to work for 10 months in Vlora, Albania, with AULEDA, the Local Economic Development Agency which is also part of the ILSLEDA network. The experience helped me grow personally and it certainly enhanced my professional career. As I had some previous experience with fundraising and editing of European projects, in AULEDA I was especially focused on writing project proposals for EU or foreign embassies’ calls for proposals. This experience allowed me to deepen my competencies in the field, to focus on the perspectives of the beneficiary country and to learn how to identify the strengths of the local geographical area and to focus the projects on them. There, I had the opportunity to see the implementation of projects (especially those in education), even though, because of the linguistic barrier, it was difficult to cooperate and learn as much as I would have liked. At the personal level I believe I learned how to present my competencies and to understand my role in a professional context; I think it was an invaluable assignment which taught me to not take anything for granted and to work from the beginning to become an added value in any given workplace.

During my experience with AULEDA, I also cooperated with the IDEASS Programme (Innovation for Human Development), researching technological innovations for human development and writing articles on these issues; this way I learned to have an all-rounded perspective on the necessities of the cooperation and socio-economic development sector.

When I came back to Italy, I immediately chose to follow up on a powerful life-long desire and, before officially entering the “labor market”, to dedicate a year to the Civil Service abroad. I have always considered volunteerism as a very significant form of civic participation and since early childhood I wanted to experience an intensive voluntary work like this. The best project which also came closest to my professional interests was working with ACLI in Paris, as it offered the opportunity to work on Italian immigration in France.

Upon returning from France, I had the long-awaited opportunity to start working in the field about which I have always been really passionate: projects with immigrants and refugees. Hence I started working as a project implementer at the SPRAR project (Welcoming System for Asylum Seekers and Refugees) and at an Extraordinary Welcoming Center (EWC) for seekers of international protection in Rimini, Italy. Over time I became the referent of the EWC, which currently counts 102 adult male recipients; recently, I have also started to work on drafting project proposals with a focus on refugee integration.

My profession gives me an immense satisfaction, both because it is based on the daily relationships with people and because it is a job in which I manage a variety of important variables. Currently, I am working on supporting requests for international protection and their respective legal procedures, managing the facilities, enabling cultural and professional integration of beneficiaries and raising awareness in the local community. I believe I can grow much more in this profession because I am immensely passionate about what I do and I hope that this path takes me to more important future jobs.

Besides my main professional career, for a few years now I have also worked as a freelance translator for some translation companies. Something which started as an alternative activity while transitioning from one experience to another, translation has now become a secondary part-time job. I continue to work in translation because it allows and will allow me in the future to choose without hindrance my career path. I am currently attending a master's degree in translation to guarantee greater seriousness and competence in this field of work.

In the future, I have many plans I would like to fulfill. I hope to continue developing myself professionally, to have the possibility to experience other diverse experiences in those fields and to move towards the research field.

Anna Lucia

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