Elena Villanueva

Research Specialist


Jyväskylä, Finland | Filipino

Superpower: Making sense of and deciphering patterns in large amounts of information to help organizations find the most aligned funder partnerships for their missions.

Elena has five years of experience working with changemaking nonprofits and social enterprises on strategic fundraising for a range of donor audiences and across the fundraising cycle, including prospect research, grant writing, grants management, and donor cultivation and engagement. Through Smarter Good, she has supported over 30 organizations in the US, Asia, Latin America, and Africa across issues such as education, poverty alleviation, economic empowerment, climate adaptation and mitigation, and community-led development. Her passion for social change comes from 8 years of volunteer work at CISV International, where she has run and participated in local and international youth programs centered on active global citizenship, and engaged with a diverse community of youth aspiring to contribute to a more just and peaceful world. Elena has a degree in AB Interdisciplinary Studies with specializations in Sociology, Psychology, and Education from Ateneo de Manila University, and is currently taking her Masters in Development, Education and International Cooperation at the University of Jyväskylä.