Mr. Graciano Gaillard
Mr. Graciano Gaillard, the YES country coordinator for the Dominican Republic (DR), has always supported and believed in the different initiatives of the young people in his country. Graciano is an example of a young man who has had to encounter a lot of challenges in his impressive professional career, but this serves as an example of an inspiring role model to follow.
Originally from San Pedro de Macorís, on the east coast of the D.R., Graciano has always been involved with youth programs in his hometown, and it wasn’t until he started working at the Ministry of Youth that he began to expand his knowledge and experience throughout the rest of the country.
He worked at the Ministry of Youth from 2000 to 2004 as the Director for International Affairs and Cooperation, and he helped organize and participate in various programs and events both in the DR and abroad. By traveling and interacting with youth from various countries, he acquired a lot of knowledge, experiences and best practices to learn from and help implement in his own country.
Graciano is currently the Youth Employment and Entrepreneurship Projects Manager at the United Nations Association of the Dominican Republic (UNA-DR), a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) with the mission of promoting the work of the United Nations (UN) in the Dominican Republic. The UNA-DR contributes to the training of young Dominican students in order for them to succeed in an increasing globalized world.
Between his work at the Ministry of Youth and the UNA-DR, when he first entered in 2004, Graciano has been present and participating in all of the YES Campaign Summits organized. He attended the Alexandria (Egypt) Summit in 2002, the Veracruz (Mexico) Summit in 2004, and the YES Regional Meeting for Latin America and the Caribbean in Asuncion, Paraguay, in 2005. He also coordinated and retrieved the recommendations from over 250 of the Dominican youth for the “Young Entrepreneurs of the Americas, Forum for the participation of the Civil Society in the process of the Summit of the Americas” (Foro). Graciano also represented the Dominican Republic at the Foro in Buenos Aires, Argentina, 9th to the 12th of August, 2005.
Since acting as leader of the YES Co-Coordinators of the Dominican Republic, he has helped grow this network of collaborators and participants to over 200 people. The members include young people and key organizations from all sectors including government, NGOs, educational institutions and the civil society.
His work at the UNA-DR has its main focus in the development of programs and events on entrepreneurship. With the continual support from the Fundacion Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE) and the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD), the UNA-DR took the lead in organizing and implementing the first Business Labs Project in the D.R. The Business Labs is a project developed by the Young Americas Business Trust (YABT) and Graciano has learnt the “hands-on practical training” methodology of the project while interning at the YABT’s headquarters in Washington D.C. and attending a past workshop in El Salvador in 2005.
In July 2005, as the supervisor of another key project in the DR, Graciano also organized the launch the “First National Competition of Youth Entrepreneurship” in the country. Collaborating with FUNGLODE, GFDD, the Ministry of Youth and other national partners, the competition reinforces President Leonel Fernandez’s declaration that the year 2006 be the “Year of the Creation of Jobs.”
For Graciano it is natural to guide and teach young people all over his country. He has been doing this for over 10 years, and continues to experience satisfaction, motivation and inspiration from all the work done together with these young leaders. Graciano is a lawyer by profession and speaks Spanish, English, Creole and French.
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