Cecilia is a driven professional currently working with the Swedish Migration Agency as a case officer.
She has a degree in International Social Work and she is passionate about working with cases related to human trafficking and women’s rights. She also plays a supporting role for a university exchange program between Sweden and India for social work students.
She always tries to encourage students to step out of their comfort zones and embrace challenges so they can graduate as compassionate & ambitious social workers. During leisure time, she enjoys travelling, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends.
Tell us about yourself, your background and what you do currently
My Name is Cecilia Larm and I am 29 years old. I was born and raised in a small town in mid Sweden. From an early age, I have been fascinated with people and cultures. This fascination has driven me to travel the world and take up a profession that is centric to people and culture integration. I completed my graduate studies in International Social Work.
During the course, I was fortunate to do my field practice in India. During my 4 months in India, I was inspired by the work carried out by local organizations to tackle various grass root problems. This compelled me to choose a career path in Social Work.
I currently work as a case officer for The Swedish Migration Agency. I investigate and make decisions for people all over the world applying for Swedish resident permits.
Tell us about any initiatives you wish to promote
In January 2018, I took a sabbatical from work to pilot a program. I returned to India for 3 months to collaborate with local organizations complimentary to the work I do in Sweden. Only this time I returned as a professional and not as a student. Another professional from the same field in Sweden joined me in India for the same purpose. I want to promote the idea of having working professional exchanges between Sweden and India in the field of social work. My personal experience was extremely enriching and I came back to my workplace in Sweden with new ideas and solutions to solve common problems. My exchange experiences with India enabled me to help create a new exchange program between the University in Sweden and a local organization in Tanzania that is working with women and children. My endeavour is to continue supporting similar programs across the world.
What have been the biggest challenges working in your field?
The biggest challenge working with immigration is the Political climate currently existing in Europe. Majority of the EU nations are moving centre right and are making regulations and laws surrounding immigration extremely stringent. All my decisions are based on the law. There are cases originating from war torn countries where at times I am stuck between moral and legal judgement. It is however, my duty to follow the prevailing law and be objective in my decision-making.
Who has been your biggest inspiration? What has been your greatest achievement personally?
I take inspiration from everyday stories of ordinary people I come across through my personal and professional life. Human stories of courage, compassion and resilience inspire me every day. Having said that my Grandmother is the biggest inspiration and influence in my life. Her selflessness, humility and courage have made me the person I am today. She has taught me many valuable lessons and always pushed me to go pursue my dreams. If I could be half the person she is, I would consider that as my great achievement in life.
If you weren’t doing what you do now, what would you be doing?
Food, Travel and culture have always been my main interests. If I weren’t doing what I do today, I would relocate to India and start an adventure travel company. India will always hold a special place in my heart as it has and continues to give me the most enriching life experiences. India also gave me a life partner and an extended family.
What does the future hold for you?
I live on impulse and do not look too far ahead. It may sound a bit clichéd but I honestly take each day as it comes and am a firm believer of the saying ‘the best way to predict the future is to create it’.