AFD's expert in gender issues, Mar Merita Blat has been working to promote gender equality in France and abroad for more than 10 years.
She has been specializing in this field since she completed her studies. After obtaining a Master’s degree in International Affairs at Sciences Po Paris, Mar Merita Blat undertook a second Master’s degree, this time in Gender Equality at Universitat Jaume I in Spain.
This French-Spanish national then worked for a variety of public institutions and associations on gender issues. Initially in charge of the International Division of the French NGO Ni Putes Ni Soumises, she joined the Essonne Departmental Council as Head of Mission for Gender Equality in 2009. In 2013, she took on a new role at the Ministry of Social Affairs, Health and Women's Rights, where she was tasked with conducting impact studies on gender equality laws and bills.
In 2017, Mar Merita Blat returned to the international scene, as Senior Project Manager for Expertise France, to manage the gender component of a European cooperation program in Latin America. In 2020, she joined AFD's Social Link Unit, mandated with developing the subject of gender equality. This is because gender inequalities are recognized as being a major obstacle to economic and social development, and it is therefore important to take them into account in the Group's programs. Mar Merita Blat is also responsible for monitoring AFD's partnerships in terms of gender issues, and coordinating the Group's contribution to the Generation Equality Forum, a global event organized by UN Women, which aims to launch concrete actions in 2021.
In her various roles, Mar Merita Blat has published materials and created tools related to masculinity issues, gender stereotypes, combating violence against women, public policies for equality, and the evaluation of relevant legislation. In parallel, she continues to be involved in the voluntary sector. She became a member of the Osez le Féminisme association, and from 2014 to 2019, she worked as vice-president of advocacy for UN Women France.