Clara grew up in Portland, Oregon with her parents and two brothers. Despite her relatively sheltered education, Clara always yearned to know more about the world.  Her parents say she’s been challenging what she’s told since she could talk; her first word was “no” after all.

In high school, Clara’s independence and desire to travel led her to Amigos de las Americas, an organization that partners students from the U.S. with Latin American communities that request aid. While in Loma Clavel, Paraguay, she taught daily lessons, constructed eighteen latrines for different families, and worked with community members to identify their abilities and resources. Clara’s experiences in Paraguay taught her about the importance of empowerment and relationship building.

After she graduated high school 2012, Clara dedicated a year of her life to AmeriCorps NCCC service.  Her team partnered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and worked as first-responders for disaster relief across the United States. Clara has gained invaluable leadership and interpersonal skills while working, living in, and experiencing a variety of adverse situations and communities.

Today, Clara is dedicated to her work and her education. Clara is proud to be a part of the YMO team and is committed to her work in fundraising administration. She is also currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon, double majoring in international studies and Spanish and minoring in nonprofit management. She enjoys spending as much time outdoors as possible.  She’s gearing up for the spring triathlon season, and spending her little free time socializing, painting and reading.

Fun Fact: In the Spring of 2014, Clara and a couple of her closest friends descended into the Grand Canyon, dipped their toes in the Colorado river, and climbed all the way back out in just 8 hours.  That’s 15 miles of stair-stepping and breath-taking scenery; a feat she doesn’t recommend.