E6 – How one woman is working with prisons for a safer Mexico

The Incredible women that I have met and interviewed for this Woman on a Mission Series do not cease to amaze me. Every time I listen to a new story, I am blown away by what incredbile lenghts women go to make this world a better place.

So is the case with Saskia Niño De Rivera. This incredible woman started an organization at the age of 24 to help the women (and particularly mothers) in Mexico’s prisons. This unassuming young woman spends her time working with some of the most vulnerable people in Mexico’s prison system as well as some of the most notorious criminals in the same institutions.

Mexican-American with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at the Universidad Iberoamericana, she is currently the President of Reinserta A.C., which she decided to create at the age of 24 in order to fight for a safer Mexico working with the penitentiary system.

She worked in the National Anti-Kidnapping Coordination, where one of her main projects was the creation of the profile of kidnappers at a national level and the coordination of the new design of specialized detention of kidnappers in prisons with high security cells. She was Deputy Director of Vulnerable Groups in the Delegación Coyoacán in Mexico City, intern in the Carstens Mexico City Institute in the area of ​​negotiation of kidnappings, and volunteer in Education and Development Service to the IAP Community (SEDAC), working on projects for the benefit of women in vulnerability.

In 2015, she promoted the creation of the Motherhood in Prison clause in the National Criminal Enforcement Law and was invited to work on and create the 2015-2016 Social Responsibility Agenda with various companies in the world in the Mexico Global Compact. In 2014, she participated in several working groups for the reform of the Mexican criminal justice system.

She conducted a profile study of more than 800 kidnappers in order to create a project aimed at crime prevention.  Also headed the motherhood in prison study, where more than 11 prisons were analyzed, interviewing 2,500 incarcerated women.

Saskia has given numerous lectures on social reintegration, security issues, human rights of juvenile offenders, and psychological aspects for the mental health of incarcerated people.

She was chosen as the Mexican leader of the first generation of women by Raising Talent Women’s Forum and is one of the 3,000 fellows internationally chosen by Ashoka Global for being a social entrepreneur. She was also nominated for the Nelson Mandela-Graça Machel 2016 Award and named “Next Generation Leader” by Time Magazine. She is winner of the UBS Visionaries 2016 Award, has been recognized by Global Shapers and Women’s Forum Rising Talent Mexico, is an Ambassador of Vital Voices since 2016 and in 2017, received the Iberoamerica Medal from the Honoris Causa Foundation for her work defending human rights.

Saskia was named by Women Forum 2018, as one of the 16 women who are transforming the country. She received the award “Defense of Human Rights of people deprived of liberty” by the Legal Forum in 2018. She was invited by Vital Voices to the Global group of 75 women leaders changemakers in Mumbai, India.

Learn more about Reincerta A.C.

You can listen to the other episodes of the podcast here

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