Secretary-General Appoints Patricia Portela de Souza of Brazil United Nations Resident Coordinator in Cabo Verde
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appointed Patricia Portela de Souza of Brazil as the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Cabo Verde, with the host Government’s approval. She takes up her post on 8 May.
Ms. Portela de Souza brings more than 25 years of experience in development and humanitarian work with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), working in Brazil, Mozambique, Bangladesh, Headquarters (New York), Kenya, Angola and Costa Rica.
Prior to her appointment as United Nations Resident Coordinator, Ms. Portela served as the UNICEF Country Representative in Costa Rica. There, she led the development of the new Country Programme of Cooperation and contributed to the development of the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework 2023–2027 — the overarching road map agreed with the Government guiding the work of the United Nations development system in the country. She also supported the opening of 35 safe spaces for migrant and national children in highly vulnerable host communities, and the regularization of the migratory status of over 8,000 children and adolescents. In close coordination with the Ministry of Education, she also led UNICEF country team’s work to develop the Aprendo Pura Vida digital learning platform, benefiting over 1 million students and teachers; and managed to scale up local individual giving operations, reaching nearly 2,000 individual donors for UNICEF in 1.5 years.
Before that, she worked as the UNICEF Angola Deputy Representative where she led the programmatic interventions and supported the National Institute of Statistics to conclude and launch Angola’s first Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis. She also supported the introduction of a community-based pre-school education model, and high-level advocacy efforts in partnership with civil society that successfully led to an increase of State budget allocation for children in the health, nutrition and education sectors in 2018 and 2019. She has also coordinated emergency work in several duty stations, focusing on disease outbreaks (cholera, polio, and measles), floods, droughts and the refugees and migrants´ humanitarian responses.
Ms. Portela de Souza has a master’s degree in social science/sociology and a Bachelor of Arts in social communication/journalism from the Federal University of Bahia, Brazil; a management and leadership certificate from the Gordon Institute of Business Science, University of Pretoria, South Africa; and a social norms course certificate from the University of Pennsylvania, United States.