Being a woman is an everyday challenge and being a Black woman even more so. I can safely say that a Black woman from African descent trying to settle in a leadership role faces hurdles from everywhere, even from her own community, and the temptation to give up is always looming. I have read and heard numerous times that hurdles exist for all women, regardless of their color or their age, what matters is the strength they develop and how they turn challenges into opportunities. It is certainly true, but it will remain a mere beautiful sentence and a hearsay until you SEE it in action. That is where Gabriela Doublesin came in for me. I SAW her multitasking restlessly, managing diversity and gender sensitivities with tact and patience. I saw her at work, lecturing at the University, setting up an NGO, putting together a project proposal, looking for partners, managing EU funded projects, coordinating various projects activities, but most importantly I SAW her doing all these things with efficiency, achieving great results: she was getting things done, leading by example, being in the front line, managing with firmness her collaborators and still keeping them united behind a common goal.
I saw the passion, the competence, the will to impact, the desire to translate words into action.
It was done using the right words, when necessary, it was done in full awareness of the cultural differences of her team, It was done with respect and love.
During 2019, Mrs. Maria-Gabriele Doublesin was engaged by RSM Malta to deliver a series of training sessions to our staff on the subject ‘Working in a Culturally Diverse Workplace’. Our staff come from 14 different countries so delivering a multi-cultural training was beneficial to each one of us. She managed to cover some very important topics and during this same training, staff came to realise despite we might have different cultures, values, beliefs, and behaviours, we can all live and work together as one family. All staff looked forward to actively participate during her training.
Maria Gabriele Doublesin is a trustworthy professional who I have had the pleasure to come across as part of a business network that we both form part of. She is quite meticulous in her approach with nothing less than perfection deemed to be good enough. Maria Gabriele is a truly committed professional who takes extreme pride in the high standard of her work with an unparalleled determination and drive towards completion. Any person engaging her services will find Maria Gabriele is a hardworking professional who takes problem dissection and solution design to a higher level, based on her experience of different approaches having lived and worked in a variety of countries. I have no hesitation in recommending Maria Gabriele to anyone interested in her services.
Gaby is a highly respected professional in the field of intercultural communications and interpersonal interaction. She is regularly called upon to present at international colloquiums on the subject. As a former political and economic chief of the U.S. Embassy in Malta, I would not hesitate to consult her expertise on how to best approach interlocutors from other cultures, particularly those from Arab and southern Mediterranean countries.
I met Maria-Gabriele when she was leading VOPs 2019 Learn to Work Together; Cohesion Building Through Collaboration workshops in collaboration with CORE Platform. Maria-Gabriele is a great leader. She steers conversations in the direction of action, brings people together, and creates an atmosphere of non-judgment and harmony.
Ms Maria-Gabriele Doublesin has been collaborating with CORE Platform for the past two years. The organisation has been engaged in a number of projects dealing with social inclusion, intercultural competence building, diversity, and community cohesion, among other things. In all occasions, Maria-Gabriele was the expert chosen to, not only create a well-structured and feasible training programme and project, but also to conduct as well as finalise the reporting of the workshops and events linked to these projects.
The first project Maria-Gabriele worked with CORE Platform on was ‘Working Roma’, for which two workshops were set up. The workshops, created, lead, and moderated by Maria- Gabriele, focused on the challenges and opportunities related to the employment of migrants as well as of having a culturally diverse workforce.
Following this project, Maria-Gabriele designed a training programme, ‘Moving Beyond Integration: Striving Towards an Inclusive Workforce in Times of Change’. This training programme, which was funded by the MCVS, was divided into three workshops of three hours each. The workshops, ‘Social Cultural Issues and Workplace Literacy, ‘Strategic Priorities and Competitive Advantages’, and ‘Fostering an Effective Inclusive Work Environment: Changes and Vision for the Future’ respectively, focused on identifying needs and challenges, competitive advantages and strategic priorities, as well as looking at a vision for the future when it comes to functioning efficiently and forming an effective inclusive team.
The latest project and training programme Maria-Gabriele is leading is called ‘Learn To Work Together: Cohesion Building Through Cooperation’, which is funded by the VOPs. Its main aim is to improve community cohesion by helping to bridge silos between a number of entities in Malta, including Voluntary Organisations, the business sector, and marginalised communities.
In all instances, Maria-Gabriele was very professional, meticulous, and efficient in both the structuring of her work as well as its delivery. This was reflected in not only the participants’ reactions and comments, who had nothing but positive things to say about the training programmes and Maria-Gabriele, but also in the successful outcomes, which were reported and shared with government officials.
I have experienced first-hand Maria-Gabriele’s work and all I can say is that I have yet to find someone as knowledgeable and dedicated in their work as she is. When it comes to work concerning intercultural competence, cultural diversity, social inclusion, and cohesion building, I can think of no-one better.
Maria-Gabriele is a compassionate and empathetic professional who is always ready to help others. She has garnered a wealth of experience over 30 years working with different cultures globally. A psychologist by training, having a Masters in Transcultural Counselling, she specializes in issues pertaining to social and cultural adjustment at the workplace and in society. I wish Maria-Gabriele the very best of luck with her ongoing professional practice.
I have known Maria-Gabriele since 1998 till today.
During this period she guided me in my various roles as an industrial businessman, politician, social entrepreneur, philanthropist and now Founder of Macat International Limited.
I witnessed how she skillfully assisted me in every role and each stage of my personal and professional development to tackle complex corporate issues and related interpersonal conflicts in times of change.
One of her greatest strength is to critically assess situations, power relations and motivational forces that enable those she works with to explore divergent perspectives and vantage points, shedding light on issues that are important but too often neglected.
Another considerable strength is her understanding and appreciation of culture and intercultural challenges. Although she hails from culture which is completely different to our Middle Eastern way of thinking, she managed to not only understand our value system but she also was very instrumental in understanding, negotiating and navigating cultural boundaries.
I could say much more about her and how she helped me expand my professional horizon, build successful business strategies, resolve conflict, creatively solve problems, better evaluate choices, effectively manage power relations and generally feel more confident and able at work and in my career choices. However, to expand on this I would need more of a book rather than a letter.
I therefore highly commend her and her services.