Facts, Figures & Testimonials

"stronger Together" is a proven way of protecting the rights and wellbeing of the coleagues we represent.

Some facts, figures, anecdotals and testimonials

Since taking office in 2019, our bond and our ethos of being "stronger together" has driven us to engage with colleagues and management alike to further the well being and benefits of all international field staff.

This ethos has also enabled us to leverage strong collaborative bonds between our federation UNISERV and our sister federation FICSA, with whom we work closely to ensure an even wider representation of field staff well beyond that of the UNFSU.

As we move forward into our second mandate, we intend to continue the work we have started in addition to further strengthening cooperation and collaboration with our partner the UN Staff Union, who has now become a member of our federation UNISERV, further putting action and substance behind the motto; STRONGER TOGETHER.

UNFSU Team Future
Team Future UNFSU
UNFSU Team Future

Numbers Speak For Themselves

Facts from our first term in office.


Satisfied Individual Cases


New Regular Financial Contributors


Projects Worked On

Cases Handled

Abuse of Authority and Harassment

Performance Management

Placement of Colleagues - Downsizing

Recruitment Issues

UNFCU Investment Problems

Payment of Allowances

Other Individual Issues



As partners of NewWork, Team Future have demonstrated a commitment to improving our workplace culture in an inclusive manner, co-creating the UN we want. Their commitment to staff’s welfare and to the values of the UN are apparent in their willingness to work widely with colleagues across the UN while advocating for field staff in particular 

Lanla Kamara, UNPAD

Mark and the team have shown their utmost dedication to all field staff, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, disability, religion, and the many other features that distinguish us and allow us to be true to our identities. They have been at the forefront of the recent efforts by the organization to address racism, providing a safe space for staff to express their concerns.
The United Nations People of African Descent (UNPAD) looks forward to working with Mark and the team in their second term.

Therese & Danijela

Mental health and well-being have been one of the priority issues in the UN, especially since the start of the pandemic. Mark, Leila and Liliya have helped with keeping colleagues informed and promote events and resources. Their collaboration during World Mental Health Month was particularly appreciated.

Linda Bomu, UNAMID

UNFSU Team future is very experienced and effective in collaborating with Mission management. I say this with confidence because I was a direct beneficiary of the UNFSU Team future intervention in August 2020 when my request for FWA was unreasonably denied. But when I contacted UNFSU Team Future, they did not hesitate to get involved and as a result, I was granted FWA. Congratulations on your heartfelt care. You saved my life.

In my opinion, UNFSU Team Future are really concerned about us and are keen on enhancing our wellbeing in the field/peacekeeping. I have received so much valuable information that they shared on health-related matters. Since joining the Field service in 2008, I have not encountered this level of positive involvement by UNFSU. There have been regular interactions with staff and also started the monthly meetings.

I will not hesitate to give you my unwavering support for another term and hopefully more terms in the future.

Stephen Towler, UNIFIL

Dear Friends, Colleagues, and fellow Peacekeepers around the world. For those who do not know me, my name is Steve Towler and having been a staff representative for 10 years and have had the privilege of being the president of your Union, the UNFSU, for four years, 2015-2019. I strongly believe that we need to preserve the continuity of the Field Staff Union by electing to retain in office the current Executive of Mark, Liliya and Leila.

They have spent their first mandate working under extremely restrictive conditions due to the COVID pandemic. They have worked tirelessly whilst spending much time in quarantine but still managed to represent their colleagues, us, effectively, be it by proactively ensuring changes in the COVID guidelines, to many individual staff cases and to ensuring staff rights and allowances were not taken under the guise of a pandemic.

Due to their persistence in not letting management get away with external recruitments, many colleagues, who would have been sent home due to downsizing and closures, have been reassigned to other Missions.

In these times of change, where senior management wants to use the pandemic to promote transformations that in a lot of cases could be to the detriment to staff and their current contracts, it is imperative to have an executive in office that is up to speed with all the current policies and plans that could affect us. This is not the time for a new executive, just for the sake of change.

I fully comprehend the workload Mark, Leila and Liliya are committing themselves to and strongly believe they are up to the challenge.

Please use your votes wisely and let us retain an effective, knowledgeable, proactive and fully up to speed team when we need them most.

We are my friends, “Stronger Together”.


One and half years later, the Covid-19 pandemic is still ruling our life and changed our work routine, as some colleagues will return to the office after a long time. While reminding last year struggles and uncertainty, I would like to express my gratitude for the support, both emotional and professional, received from FSU during the complex and difficult times. While the UN as a whole, was making efforts to guide staff and missions throughout that difficult situation, FSU helped me and other colleagues to address our concerns and claims, as managers were not always aligned on the same policy, nor were they all showing understanding of the impact the pandemic had on our emotional and professional side. Besides ensuring listening, FSU was advocating for our rights and effectively reached out to leadership to facilitate the resolution of the controversy, and when became necessary, FSU colleagues have provided concrete support to help me, and my colleagues undertake the formal procedure with punctual and wise advice.

Thank you once again.

Aimal Khan Momand, UNAMID

I have found the current UNFSU team extremely cooperative, approachable, dedicated and committed to assisting and finding solutions to the issues confronted by staff members. I, personally, am deeply indebted to the UNFSU President, Mr Mark Polane, Vice President, Ms Leila Manly-Spain, and their entire team for their continuous support on issues in respect of which I requested their assistance.

They did not hesitate to take up these issues at the highest level of the UN senior leadership in New York. I will, therefore, not hesitate to vote for them in the upcoming UNFSU election. I would also urge other UN colleagues to vote for Mr Polane and his dynamic team.

Sayeda, UNAMI

Dear Colleagues, friends and clients, I will request you to vote for Mark, Leila and her team to win. I want them to win because I am a personal beneficiary of what Mark and Leila did for me.


I was going through the worst phase of my official job and I was in the darkest cave trapped by harassment and abuse of authority. Irrespective of everyone's help I was not getting a respite. I called Mark who referred me to Leila who listened to my issues for hours and embraced me with her kind words, guidance, practical help, understanding and most importantly stood by me like a rock. I had reached a point of no return and was about to cross PTSD the redline but Leila brought me practically back to life. I owe my confidence, the spirit to fight back, to be brave again and most importantly my self-worth of being a UN respected employee, is due to her and the support of my amazing FRO. Leila went out of her way and showed unconditional support and unimaginable patience to bear my problems and solve them in every possible way.

I referred two cases of a different nature to her from other Mission Areas and she became their guardian angels too by helping them the way she helped me. I am eternally grateful for her kindness, untiring efforts and unlimited resilience and a golden heart. This is what we want in staff representation. A team that will be there for us, to listen and support us in our darkest hours.

I again request everyone to vote for Team future. I will be eternally thankful and most grateful to each one of you who help to make them win. My best wishes and prayers go to Team Future because if they win…. we all win!!

Best regards.

Anonymous, MINUSCA

I truly needed some support with my benefits and entitlements that were not being approved or being rejected without understanding why.

I emailed Mark and he connected me to Leila. She was able to look into the matter and directly connect me with the necessary personnel. I truly appreciate how the team truly took the time to understand my issues and get involved as soon as I sent my email.

I wholeheartedly enjoy reaching out to Leila for any institutional discussions and changes and recommend #TeamFuture with Mark Polane, Leila Manly-Spain, Liliya Galieva to continue for another term.

Gina Michel-Legros

As a former FSU Vice-Chairperson and the first UNMISS’ elected female, my willingness to join FSU was to fight for those who have been victimized and oppressed; as I had been, once or maybe twice. I had the privilege to witness the passion Mark, Leila and Liliya have; as well as Rosa. You have a proven record and have done more in the middle of this changing world by creating a platform to give staff a voice.

As you will continue this journey, I urge you to never compromise yourselves and remain as a genuine and strong team that you are, with the hope that in your next term, you will encourage open dialogue and conflict of interests; which is deeply concerning amongst certain FSU members.

Your motto truly shows that we can only be “strong when we are together” facing challenges and finding solutions, which is lacking in other teams. In your next term do continue to remain as focus as you possibly can and truthful despite this pandemic. I don’t know how many would have done this without the unconditional support you provided.

Gina Michel-Legros


The UNFSU has such an important role in ensuring field perspectives are incorporated into organizational projects. On that, Mark, Leila and Liliya are outstanding! They not only provide valuable inputs but bring in fresh and innovative ways of thinking – backed up by in-depth research and understanding - which have elevated the quality of the projects on which we’ve worked together. 

Thomas Joy

It’s with great contentment to appreciate the great work you and the FSU team had done for the staff. During your tenure, many changes were carried out and even the approach itself was changed. Your guidance was helpful in few stressful situations and appreciate your leadership skills. Would like to mention here you know how much your and the FSU team efforts and support are valued and appreciated.

Also know that both before and during this time, you and the FSU team have worked tirelessly to address our concerns, all with a fantastic attitude and willing disposition. Let me tell you that, you recognized our comments /concerns in a kind, justified way.


Team Future has been a critical partner for driving business transformation and organizational culture change for the benefit of the field as well as the entire Secretariat. Team Future are change embracers, and change-makers – looking to do things differently, make a difference for staff in professional and personal capacities, and keeping the UN purpose, values and charter at the centre at all times.” 

Navdeep Singh, UNMIK

I can attest to the fact that during the tenure of the current FSU executive, several policies were revised including regular coordination with OHRM on multiple revisions on Covid 19 administrative guidelines which has reduced chances of litigations by staff.
The life insurance policy was updated last year after the engagement of the FSU executive which was long overdue and must have minimised the financial hardship on families losing their loved ones due to the Covid pandemic. Several FSU appeals were made on Covid relief assistance - Lebanon explosion etc for various countries which have definitely proven that FSU was standing together with the unfortunate victims of Covid and other disasters.
FSU executive was fully engaged with UNHQ counterparts in the repatriation of mortal remains of the unfortunate Covid victims in the field. They are unsung hero’s fighting for justice for all and my best wishes to the entire FSU team and unrelenting support for the hard work they have accomplished in this term and for the future. 🙏🙏🙏

Patrick Duah, Chief Integrated Mission Training Centre UNSOS/UNSOM

It gives me immense pleasure to write this testimonial on behalf of Team Future, the incumbent UNFSU Executive Team. I collaborated with the Team, through Leila who served as the Secretary to the Learning and Development (L&D) working Sub-Group for the Anti-Racism Task Force set up by the UN Secretariat. Leila was an asset to the Sub-Group, as she worked tirelessly to keep the group focused on its terms of reference.


Leila’s attitude reflects the values of the Team, which was one of cooperation and respect for the other group members and a drive for excellence. In my opinion, and as the Chair of the L&D Sub-Group, their work habits and personal characteristics will help them be successful in every area of staff representation. I am therefore happy to act as a reference for Team Future and speak to their strong work ethics and professionalism.

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