I’m Megan (most people call me Meg), and I have recently joined the CO2balance team as a Carbon Projects Officer! I’m very grateful for the opportunity to be part of this enthusiastic and dedicated team who gave me such a lovely warm welcome. I’m very excited to help develop our safe water and improved cookstove projects in Guatemala, Zambia and Burkina Faso, whilst also contributing to researching new and exciting opportunities!
I have always had an interest in sustainable development and recognised the importance it holds in ensuring the health of our planet for generations to come. Prior to university, I volunteered in Nepal as part of a sustainable development and women’s empowerment programme. I lived with my host family in Kirtipur for six weeks and taught English language at a women’s school to students between the ages of 17-70, who were deprived of a formal education due to the extreme gender disparities that are prevalent in Nepal. The school provides a safe learning environment and social outlet, which empowers women by giving them the necessary skills to boost their job prospects, helps build confidence and a network within the community. The women who attend are often particularly interested in learning to speak English as this can open the door to many potential work opportunities. While taking part in this project, I was able to witness first-hand the real change development projects can bring to communities, and the massive impacts they can have on the quality of people’s day-to-day lives.
Photo with my students at the Women’s school in Kirtipur, Nepal
My host mother carrying out the goodbye ceremony
I went on to graduate from the University of Manchester in 2020 with a BA in Geography. I chose this degree as I have always loved travelling and learning about the intricacies of the world around us. These years at university further deepened my specific interests in sustainability, development, health and nature, all of which align so well with the work CO2balance carries out!
After graduating, I was unsure about where to go and what to do next, with the pandemic scuppering any international travel plans as I’m sure many can relate to! I ended up getting a job at my local garden centre in Cardiff, working in the outdoor plant area which sparked my (debt-inducing!!) passion for plants. I loved this role, and it gave me the time and space I needed to think about which career path I wanted to pursue.
Whilst in this position, I pushed for sustainable practices, choosing to focus my learning on native plant species (particularly trees), as they increase biodiversity, are more likely to survive and thrive in the UK’s conditions and are more efficient at sequestering carbon. I encouraged customers to choose plants which would live much longer (e.g. trees, shrubs, perennials) by providing recommendations on the species best suited to their individual planting conditions, and advice on care and maintenance, as the longer the plants live and the healthier they are, the more carbon that is sequestered!
I am very proud and excited to join this company, whose projects have such a long-lasting and meaningful impact on so many people’s lives, whilst also contributing to the fight against climate change. This is a very dynamic and exciting time for the industry, and I am delighted to be joining now!
Outside of work, I love travelling and exploring new cultures and countries, cooking (and eating!), anything based outdoors, in and amongst nature, and any sea-based activities (being the water baby I am) including swimming and scuba diving.