My name is Matthew and I’m one of the latest recruits to join CO2balance- joining as a Carbon Project Officer.
I join the team having studied and worked in different roles in the UK, Sweden and Brazil. My background is very much in the environmental and sustainable development landscape, although my most recent work role included community development and project work to improve the health and wellbeing outcomes of a deprived community in the West Midlands. I have always been committed to encouraging local participation and collective agency in decision making- especially when tackling the global challenges of climate change at local levels.
I studied Global Development and Sustainability at Bath Spa University, allowing me the opportunity to travel to Kenya and work with local grassroots entrepreneurs to realise their modest but vital business ideas and step out of cycles of poverty. My academic research also took to Brazil, where I explored the climate change and politically-driven factors which surrounded a major drought which impacted the south-eastern region in late 2014.
I have a keen interest in many things South America and most things Brazil. I lived in Sao Paulo for several years, where I (eventually) learnt to speak Portuguese and still enjoy the challenge of trying to master some local dishes- even if only now from my flat in Bristol (the Moqueca is almost there…).
I travelled quite extensively throughout Brazil, where I explored Agroforestry initiatives in Acre, in the Amazon, supported the fundraising efforts and invaluable work of an NGO in a favela community and even taught English to some of Sao Paulo’s business elite.
Away from work and professional interests, I am a long-suffering Newcastle United supporter and have an excessive interest in all things football. This peaked not long ago when my girlfriend had to stage an intervention whilst I was watching the Colombian 2nd division relegation play-off. So unpopular was the tie to most people, they had only bothered to field one linesman…
I am hugely grateful to be joining such a friendly and welcoming team and look forward to contributing to such excellent and vital work moving forwards.