Maria Metodieva focuses on the Family Economic Success program among disadvantaged groups in Bulgaria. Her commitment is to maximize results for the Trust in this sphere and to help beneficiaries gain the skills and experience they need to find relevant employment to support their families. The Trust approaches this challenging task by building and sustaining valuable partnerships with leading businesses as well as supporting programs that increase the employability of beneficiaries. Equally relevant are community projects and the promotion of legalized neighborhoods and home ownership.
Prior to joining the Trust, Maria served as Director of the Roma Program at Open Society Institute in Sofia. Her areas of expertise include civil society development, strategic planning, ethnic minority integration, community development, public-private partnerships, and public policies for vulnerable groups.
Maria holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from the New Bulgarian University.
Iskra Stoykova supports the development of the Trust’s approach toward maternal and infant wellbeing among Bulgaria’s most impoverished citizens. Her responsibilities include design and management of projects, analysis and evaluation of the Trust’s initiatives, and applicability of successful models in the field to the Bulgarian context.
Prior to joining TSA, Iskra acquired more than 10 years of experience in design, management, and evaluation of Roma community development projects. For four years, she was responsible for projects that aimed to improve access and quality of education for Roma children at the pre-school and primary level. Throughout the next six years, she managed the Early Childhood Development Program of the Health and Social Development Foundation and focused on the design, piloting, and evaluation of an integrated model of community-based services for pre-school education, parenting skills training, family planning for adolescents, and individual case management for families at risk.
Iskra graduated from the American University in Bulgaria with BA degrees in Business Administration and Journalism and Mass Communication. She also holds a master’s degree in human rights from the University of Sarajevo and the University of Bologna.
Alyona leads projects under the Early Learning and Care and Educational Achievement Programs. She is involved in the planning, design, administration, and monitoring of activities, projects, events, and trainings. Her other responsibilities include data collection, processing, and verification, as well as coordination and communication with partners and grantees.
Before joining the Trust, Alyona was an English language teacher in Samokov through the Teach for Bulgaria program. She has worked on social, political, and marketing research in Bulgarian and international organizations.
Alyona holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” and several postgraduate specializations, including the “Governing Skills” national program of the Bulgarian School of Politics “Dimitry Panitza”. Currently she is specializing in preschool Montessori pedagogy at Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”.
JUNIOR PROGRAM OFFICER FAMILY ECONOMIC SUCCESS PROGRAM
Lyubka Georgieva is a Junior Program Officer in TSA’s Family Economic Success Program.
She supports the implementation of the Trust’s approach toward Family Economic Success to increase the chances of individuals from vulnerable communities to find work by acquiring marketable skills and experience. Her work involves establishing and maintaining partnerships with leading companies and supporting programs that aim to increase the employability and employment of beneficiaries.
Prior to joining the Family Economic Success team, she coordinated the Equal Chance Program: Access to high school education. She also supported the grants management and compliance functions by assisting the team in the grant approval process and the grant monitoring process.
In 2014, Lyubka graduated in Public administration and she became a member of the Roma English Language Program at the Central European University in Budapest.
Lyubka also holds master’s degree in Human Resources Management from South-West University “Neofit Rilski”.
Eugenia Volen is the Program Officer responsible for the Early Education portfolio at the Trust. Her core functions include fundraising to leverage program impact and supporting the Early Education team’s professional growth. Eugenia also leads TSA’s advocacy and policy change efforts so that all children in Bulgaria can access high quality early education services. Under her leadership, TSA is making a significant contribution towards evidence-based policy-making with respect to affordability and developmental impact of early education for children from disadvantaged communities. Eugenia is also the Program Officer responsible for Learning and Development.
Before joining TSA, Eugenia was a financial reporting consultant to investment management companies in the United States and a senior audit manager at Ernst & Young New York. She led numerous internal controls assessments and oversaw the financial audits of large and complex financial services companies. Eugenia’s career with Ernst & Young spanned 12 years and 3 countries, including Bulgaria. Serving a wide variety of industries, Eugenia managed and participated in financial and internal control audits, fraud investigations, due diligence reviews, and staff training programs.
Eugenia holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from the Monterey Institute of International Studies and a bachelor’s degree in Finance and Accounting. Eugenia is a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.