Clarissa Rios Rojas from Peru says, " Because I come from there I feel very connected and responsible with the social issues happening in the so called "Developing countries".

The biggest challenge that she overcame was to have few resources (money) for pursuing her studies and dreams of professional development. Coming from a low-income family, she and her parents made a lot of sacrifices to let her have  proper education. She worked hard at university to win a scholarship to go to Finland as an exchange student. Later to study in the prestigious university Karolinska Institute in Sweden,she had to work cleaning ships and houses, collecting glasses, teaching Spanish, and babysitting so to pay for living expenses while studying. She overcame  initial lack of opportunities by empowering herself through education and by working hard and being persistent on  goals. "Resilience, good attitude and passion " she speaks helped  me in my journey.

  Actually, the lack of resources (money) and opportunities for professional development is a big problem in the whole Latin America.

So, in order to find a solution to this problem, Clarissa started a non-profit called Ekpapalek ( Its mission is to empower Latin students and promote the social and economic development of Latin American countries. Hence, Ekpapalek promotes opportunities of professional development for Latin Americans by offering three FREE programmes: the first program connects students with hosts that offer them free accommodation while they do an internship abroad. The second programme offers them online mentorship with a plethora of experienced professionals via Skype and the third programme aims to change the current women's role models.

She lives in Australia but is a native of Peru in South America.

Clarissa is a strong soul.

 “I do not think there was a special moment but a compilation of teachings during my life that made me who I am today,” she says.

She shares,"I had the chance to become an empowered women, so I feel responsible for people that are born in disadvantage, in an unequal world where they do not have enough opportunities to develop themselves. I am leader because I choose to take action and contribute to solve these problems by developing projects that help building a more equal world."

Leaders like her bring a change in society.




Topic Leadership