Mexico: Maria del Pilar Sertvije de Mariscal

I wish to share, to serve, and to do the greater good for everyone.

— Maria del Pilar Sertvije de Mariscal

Maria del Pilar Sertvije de Mariscal has a large, united family. It even has its own ‘constitution.’ It has a tradition of voluntary social work, even though the focus has changed throughout the generations. She is the daughter of a wealthy businessman and, therefore, she has the option of dedicating her life to her passions: voluntary social work and nursing.

Maria was born in Mexico City, in 1946. She is the second child in a family of six daughters and two sons. Mexico is a country of great inequalities. She was taught by her father to be responsible and to support people with fewer resources. From her mother, she received firm values and a Christian education. “As a little girl, I was very much inspired by the life of the saints, and, in my imaginative play, I used to take on the role of a religious woman devoted to the service of others.” Since 1999, Maria del Pilar Sertvije de Mariscal has been the president of the Mexican Red Cross and is a member of different philanthropic organizations, such as the Merced Foundation and the Mexican Centre for Philanthropy. She is very interested in the improvement of the quality of vocational training for nurses. “The role of nurses must be dignified. In our country they are so poorly paid that no one wants to be a nurse. I have a great vocation for this work and the great luck of being able to dedicate myself to something I am fond of.” Maria has been dedicated to voluntary service for 36 years. “I have tried to be where my work is most needed. I have many responsibilities and I am convinced that we have to serve the country.” This inspirational woman, mother of four children, gains great satisfaction from her work.

Mexican Red Cross