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Marina Csikós joins the PLUS Change project representing intersectional Roma rights and gender equality.

Marina Csikós is a Roma feminist and dedicated gender equality professional. Born and raised in Hungary as a Roma woman, she embodies a passion for social justice that has led her to impactful professional roles. Marina gained her master’s education at the Central European University in Critical Gender Studies, where she focused her research on intersectional justice and feminist knowledge production. 

Throughout her career, she has worked with feminist initiatives and research, European intergovernmental institutions, foundations, civil society organizations and art institutions, where she focused on amplifying feminist values and intersectional perspectives. Marina’s mission is to challenge the multiple forms of discrimination and oppression that BIPOC women and girls face. She is also the co-founder of Feminist Collective of Romani Gender Experts, an initiative aiming to connect Roma gender equality professionals and produce expert knowledge on gender issues. 

What community or organisation are you representing in the project?

Roma women are an integral part of the Roma community, a diverse ethnic group with a rich cultural heritage that spans across Europe and beyond. The Roma people, often referred to as Romani, have a unique history marked by resilience and perseverance despite centuries of marginalisation and discrimination. Roma women, in particular, face a dual burden of gender and ethnic discrimination, making their experiences and struggles distinct within both the broader society and their own communities. 

What motivated you to apply to become an ambassador?

Since Roma women and girls are usually not considered as decision makers and do not have the chance to take part in democratic processes, it was important for me to mainstream their concerns and bring a Roma feminist perspective to the project.  

How does your work correspond with PLUS Change?

My work at the Feminist Collective of Romani Gender Experts aligns closely with PLUS Change’s mission to promote social justice, equity, and sustainable development. As a Roma feminist, I focus on advocating for Roma women’s rights and empowering them through education, health, and economic initiatives. This complements PLUS Change’s goals of fostering inclusive societies and resilient communities. We plan to collaborate by hosting joint workshops on gender equality, participating in awareness campaigns, sharing best practices, and engaging in cross-cultural exchanges. This partnership aims to amplify our impact and create more equitable opportunities for Roma women. 

What are you looking forward to in the coming years?

 In the coming years, I am looking forward to building stronger, sustainable partnerships that amplify our impact on Roma women’s lives. I expect to see tangible improvements in their socio-economic status and greater access to education, healthcare, and employment opportunities. I hope to contribute to policy changes that promote gender equality and protect minority rights. By engaging with PLUS Change, I aim to expand our reach, resources, and influence, fostering a more inclusive and equitable society for Roma women. My goal is to see our community thrive, empowered, and resilient, leading positive changes for future generations.