I have big ideas about how to make the world a better place, especially through social entrepreneurship. I believe in unlocking the good in people and I’ve had the chance to work on great social projects around the world, as a consultant or analyst for various impact investment funds. I’m also a big adventurer and love to travel the world and discover new cultures – from kitesurfing in Colombia or hiking Peruvian mountains to dancing samba in Brazil or eating amok fish in Cambodia.
Latin America will always remain a second home to me. My favorite countries are Colombia and Costa Rica! What fascinates me the most are volcanoes as they look so peaceful from the outside but connect us to our deepest and wildest roots in the inside and remind us of the power of mother nature.
I see the world as an infinite discovery, with hidden secrets and beauties everywhere. To me, travelling and exploring the world goes beyond seeing things you have never seen before. It also means immersing yourself in different cultures, sharing and learning from them. Above all, it is also an inner journey in which you get out of your comfort zone and are set free to just let yourself be in a completely new setting.
I would say that my mouth and my hands are my best weapons 😊 I’m the kind of person that will shout at my friends if they drop their cigarettes on the floor, or who will end a casual walk on the beach with hands full of trash collected on the way.
One project that particularly inspires me is a hostel chain in the Philippines that stuffs plastic bottles with rubbish found on the beach and turns them into eco-bricks. I find the business model very complementary at all levels of the value chain: including tourists in the cleaning process, creating awareness on social media and ensuring a sustainable re-use of the trash that benefits the local community with the building of brand new walls.
I have lived for about 2 years in Colombia where I was based to work on social projects. I guess this country will always remain the home of my heart, especially the kindness of the people that live there, the diversity of its landscapes that extends from dry deserts, white sand beaches, rainforest to infinite coffee plantations and breathtaking mountain views.
Nonetheless, one thing that really struck me there was the presence of trash in the countryside. Indeed, on the various field visits I have made, I could always see plastic bottles or used snack papers thrown everywhere in nature, even in the plantations of the most remote villages – the same fields that people use to grow fruits and vegetables they consume in their households. I think this pollution is the result of a mixture of absence of education with regards to trash, coupled with the wide consumption reach of large multinationals such as Coca Cola. Of course, cleaning these places is essential, but there is also a lot of work to do to solve the root of the problem and sensitize these people to the fact that taking care of their own health starts with caring for their environment.