Europia Staff Team

Konrad Owca
Community Connector in Labyrinth Project
Konrad Owca
Community Connector in Labyrinth Project
konrad.o@europia.org.uk
Hi, my name is Konrad and I come from Krakow. I have been living in the UK since 2015. I previously graduated from Jagiellonian University with a degree in Ethnic Studies and International Migration. I have also been involved in many non governmental projects and initiatives both in Poland and abroad, mainly related to migration, minority rights and diversity issues. My passion is travelling and exploring various cultures from many different angles. For over six years I used to work as a tour guide all over Europe. My favourite place is Italy. Currently I work for Europia in partnership project Labyrinth where my main aim is to support the most vulnerable and out of reach communities within Salford, with a particular focus on both Central and Eastern European Communities.
Karol Kochanowski
Operations Manager
Karol Kochanowski
Operations Manager
karol.k@europia.org.uk
Hello, I’m Karol and I was born in 1986 in Poland; I’ve been living in the UK for over 15 years now. I’ve studied Fine Art at MMU and since graduation I’ve been working as a painter. Meanwhile I got interested in volunteering as a way of expanding my skills, contacts and learning new things about the environment around me. This is how I came across of Europia in 2017 where I was establishing an European LGBTQ discussion group. I haven’t forgotten about my artistic skills, though. I carry on producing new paintings, and taking part in curating art exhibitions. Me and other 7 creative individuals set up Europia Art Collective. So far we have organised a number of art events. Once the lockdown is over, we will get back together to surprise you with more odd and beautiful projects.
Cristina Leonte-Racu
Service Manager
Cristina Leonte-Racu
Service Manager
cristina.l@europia.org.uk
Marlena Wawrzenczak
Partnership and Communications Manager
Marlena Wawrzenczak
Partnership and Communications Manager
marlena.w@europia.org.uk
Hello, I’m Marlena. I was born in Poland, but I have lived abroad for half of my life. My journey started in 2002, when I got an opportunity to work and live in Jersey, and a couple of years after I moved to England. In 2009, my daughter was born and since then I started my adventure of maternity and freelance work in various fields, first as a mobile hairdresser and then as a graphic designer and marketing consultant. In a meantime I also worked in the office in a customer service and marketing department. I always was interested in working among communities, that’s why I also started to organise community events and gained NVQ in Equality and Diversity to better understand different cultures. For more than 10 years I have been involved in projects related to the support and development of women. I’m co-founder of BiznesMama Network CIC, which is a network of creative, resourceful, and ambitious Polish women in the UK. Thanks to the collaboration with Europia the idea of ​​creating a group for European migrant women was born. The purpose of Europia Women's Group is an integration, support and empowerment of European Women living or working in Greater Manchester, as well as cooperation with organisations that already have bespoke services for women. After a couple of years of my freelance collaboration with Europia (in graphic design and marketing field) I became Comms and Engagement Team Leader, and occasionally I supported other departments and projects. Recently my passion for connecting people and creating long-term relationships was recognised and I became Partnership and Communications Manager, and that came with a lot of opportunities for self-development. I enjoy working with fantastic people in Europia and I’m grateful that I can contribute to support European communities in Greater Manchester.
Jo Lake
HR Manager
Jo Lake
HR Manager
My name is Jo Lake and I’m the HR Manager for Europia (working on a consultancy basis). I have approximately 15 years of generalist Human Resources (HR experience) gained in both employed settings (with a Housing Association) as well as over 8 years of running my own HR business working on a consultancy basis with many charities and small - medium sized businesses. I have an MSc in Occupational Psychology and a First Class BSc Psychology degree. My aim is to support charities so they can deliver high quality, best practice HR practices for their staff and their organisation and can get the very best out of every individual staff member who will hopefully feel valued and motivated.
Ramona Constantin
Roma Advocacy Worker
Ramona Constantin
Roma Advocacy Worker
roma@europia.org.uk
Hi, my name is Ramona. Before Europia, I was working as regional organiser at Migrants Organise. There, I was working with Europeans, refugees and asylum seekers stopping detentions and doing campaigns to change the policy for migrants in the UK. In this job I was also working with the Roma community. At the moment, I am working as Roma Advocacy Worker at Europia. I help and give advice to the Roma people. For me helping the Roma community is important because they need someone who understands them and can give them advice which will help improve their current issues and can explain what their next steps should be to help their situation. I am doing this work because I know I am reliable and most of the Roma people know me and so it's easy for me to give the help necessary for them to improve their situations. Now I have 5 children between 3 and 17 years old. I am a happy mother and a happy person too. I believe that Europia has had a great impact on individuals within Roma community. Many of them have received the most accurate and appropriate help and advice.
Lizzie Wilkinson
EUSS Officer
Lizzie Wilkinson
EUSS Officer
lizzie.w@europia.org.uk
Hi all, I am Lizzie. I moved to Nottingham at the beginning of lockdown 1.0. Prior to that, I lived in Wythenshawe, Greater Manchester. I work in the EUSS team supporting vulnerable citizens to complete their EUSS applications and understand their rights and responsibilities in a post-Brexit Britain. My background and experience is frontline child protection social work. I have a degree in Social Work and a master’s degree in Global Citizenship, Identities and Human Rights. I began working with Europiapart time in December 2020. However, since August 2019, I have worked in partnership with them whilst employed at Citizens Advice Bury and Bolton in their EUSS Team. I am proud to work for Europia; they offer an invaluable service to the citizens of Greater Manchester in one of the most turbulent times of a generation. The team is also incredible, they all work hard-work and go above and beyond to support one another and the people they work for. I shall be on maternity leave from October 2021 to summer 2022 as I am due to have my first child, upon my return I am eager to continue building an immigration service that puts citizens' needs first.
Magdalena Kij
CEE Community Development Worker
Magdalena Kij
CEE Community Development Worker
community@europia.org.uk
Hi, I am Magda, Europia's Community Development Worker. I work within the community supporting people with welfare and various art workshops and activities. I find art to be very healing and helpful in terms of trauma and depression. My approach to people is to be friendly and never judgemental.
Ruth Mullen
Senior Immigration Advisor
Ruth Mullen
Senior Immigration Advisor
Ruth joined Europia in March 2021 and assisted the charity to achieve its current OISC 3 registration. Ruth has been working in the field of immigration law for 10 years and accumulated a wealth of experience. She is currently accredited at OISC level 3 and able to take on complex cases and appeals. She is also accredited as a Law Society senior caseworker. Ruth is passionate about making immigration law accessible to all.
Goda Karinauskaitė
Project Assistant
Goda Karinauskaitė
Project Assistant
goda.k@europia.org.uk
Kush Chottera
CEO
Kush Chottera
CEO
kush.c@europia.org.uk
Having moved to the U.K in 2005 one of the first languages I was introduced to was Polish. Having worked in various third sector jobs including homelessness, addiction and mental health I then got trained as an ESOL teacher. I was brought into Europia as a trustee and within a short span of time led the unincorporated community group to a registered CIO. Creating a team with shared power, co-production and championing for lived experience representation is my vision. Ensuring Europia is a compassionate and effective organisation providing holistic and practical support to EU nations is my mission.
Caroline Pollard
Volunteer Coordinator
Caroline Pollard
Volunteer Coordinator
Jayne Rudd
Communications Assistant
Jayne Rudd
Communications Assistant
jayne.r@europia.org.uk
Hi I'm Jayne, Europia's Communications Assistant, supporting the organisation with its marketing and communications tasks. I have a 2:1 Bachelor of Arts degree with Honours in English with Creative Writing from University of Birmingham and a Masters in Marketing (Communications) from Manchester Metropolitan University. Marketing communications is a great passion of mine, and I am currently relishing the opportunities Europia have given me to add to my skill set. The lovely people within the organisation have made me feel extremely welcome and part of the team.

Europia Volunteers

Europia Volunteers offer their time for free in return for work experience, skills development, professional development and other opportunities available at any one time. The role is interesting and varied and currently, the EU national volunteers include Hungarian, Latvian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian and Spanish people living in Greater Manchester and the UK. Thanks to all Europia Volunteers, we couldn’t do without you!

Europia Student Placements and Interns

Europia Student Placements and Interns are essential to the Europia Family just as much as the Europia Volunteers. Recently, student placements have been included in the growing Health and Wellbeing team and Interns are working across the charity, in different teams. Being a part of Europia means you get to experience a wide variety of supportive roles and an insight into the running of a charitable organisation. Thanks to all.

Europia Board of Trustees

Chair: Paul Lajszczak (appointed December 2017)

Treasurer: Adam Mitula (appointed November 2019)

Artur Bobikyan (appointed May 2021)

Alexandra Boca (Trustee in training appointed in December 2021)

Artem Trofymenko (Trustee in training appointed in June 2022)

 

Would you like to become a trustee of Europia contact our HR manager Jo Lake (jo.l@europia.orguk)

Europia Ukraine Advisory Panel

Artem Trofymenko

 

Would you like to be on this panel contact Goda Karinauskaite (goda.k@europia.org.uk)

 

 

 

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