Paola Zuniga is a Bay Area equity leader with over 20 years of commitment toward the healthy development of young people, families, and communities. A native of Nicaragua, she has successfully worked with a wide range of stakeholders to generate robust initiatives that derive from local communities’ wisdom and lived experiences. Paola’s professional work is grounded in her personal experience as an immigrant, eager to start a new life free from the experiences of civil war, political violence, and instability. After obtaining her B.A. at UC Berkeley, Paola returned to Nicaragua to join the growing autonomous women’s movement, where she co-founded the Nicaraguan Network of Women Against Violence (“La Red”). Paola returned to the Bay Area to complete her Master’s degree in Social Work at SF State University.
Paola facilitates collaborative processes to align resources and set up conditions for exemplary practices that serve people and communities farthest from opportunity. In her recent role as a program coordinator with Alameda County Public Health Department, Paola partnered with Street Level Health Project and La Familia to bring resources and mobile vaccine clinics to communities that did not have access to COVID-19 safety net provisions. Paola continues her work as an independent consultant in partnership with organizations working on education and health & wellness equity.
Paola is a life-long learner, a mindfulness practitioner, and a student of Buddhist teachings. She is the proud mother of Joaquin Amaru and loves to hike, garden, cook, dance, and celebrate with the community.