Meet our staff: Anna Avetiuk, Administrative Assistant/Interpreter, EUBAM Field Office in Podilsk

        I’m like an interface, a mediator between two parties and a lot depends on me as to how effectively EUBAM and its Ukrainian partners communicate with one another. Of course, that puts a lot of responsibility on me, especially when the Mission’s experts have to address more problematic issues with our partners. But I try to make sure both sides feel satisfied and get a result.

        It’s been over eight years since I started working for EUBAM. The relationship between the Mission and its partners has been one of the biggest changes. At the beginning, the Mission’s experts were seen as strangers at the border, just there to highlight mistakes. It was very tough. But over the years the atmosphere has changed, and they have come to value our support. That’s not just down to good experts, it’s also about clear and effective communication.

        To work with different specialists from different countries representing different agencies is a fascinating experience. You need a lot of psychological flexibility. If you are working with a Border Police expert, you start to think as they do: you try to understand the logic of an investigation; try to understand the context; and you try to look at details as they do. Then it’s a similar process the next day if I’m deployed with a Customs expert. Only in that way can I accurately reflect what the Mission’s experts are trying to convey.

        This job is all about professional development. Laws, procedures and techniques are constantly changing. For me, that means a lot of reading; keeping ahead of terminology and updating myself on new developments. It keeps me fit and sharp.

        I was born and still live close to the border, so I know a lot of people in my town who have family members on the Moldovan side. For them, quick and efficient border crossing is important to keep their families together. It’s motivating to know I contribute to that.