WHO WE ARE
Transforming our ideas into action everyday...
Living Earth was originally established as an international not-for-profit organisation (Living Earth Foundation) in 1987, focused on developing new and innovative approaches to address environmental problems faced by communities.
Living Earth was one of the earliest organisations to promote and facilitate dialogue between communities and the private sector, especially extractive industries, as a way of developing shared models for sustainable development.
What we do
Living Earth has a practical, results-driven approach. We work in three broad areas of focus:
Living Earth see energy as integral to development. At the household level this can mean improving access to clean cooking solutions or solar energy, at a larger scale this might be work to increase the uptake of renewable technologies or bringing partners together to pilot new ideas.
Living Earth promotes the development of entrepreneurs and enterprises – including in urban slums in Africa. The urban poor are, by necessity entrepreneurial; however they face many challenges trying to expand their activities. We work with partners to increase access to training, skills and credit to improve livelihoods.
Living Earth believes it is essential to engage local communities as active stakeholders in ecosystem protection. We work with people living in biodiversity hotspots, building links with local government, companies and conservation agencies to ensure that community challenges are addressed.
Chris Callaghan has worked as a teacher, aid worker and manager of social development programmes in several African countries. He has worked for large UK NGOs including Save the Children Fund, ActionAid and HelpAge International. He joined Living Earth Foundation in 1999 and stayed with the organisation for 15 years, becoming its Chief Executive in 2012. Over the course of his career, Chris has become convinced of the value of harnessing the entrepreneurial spirit of poor people to drive economic development and social change in Africa.
Niall Marriott is a specialist in sustainability risk management, corporate responsibility and cross-sector partnership. A zoologist by training, he has worked extensively with the private sector, government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) developing collaborative strategies for managing sustainable development challenges, particularly biodiversity conservation. He has extensive experience of working in Africa, South America, South East Asia, and Central and Eastern Europe, in addition to the UK.
In addition to his own consultancy, Niall Marriott Associates, Niall is a founder-director of the Cambridge-based international sustainability consultancy, The Helical Group, which specialises in providing sustainability risk management services to companies managing investments in socially and environmentally fragile and challenging operating environments. In 2010, Niall founded Carbon-Plus Capital, a firm specialising in low-carbon project development and financing.
Prior to entering environmental consultancy, Niall was a director of London-based international environmental charity Living Earth Foundation. In 2005, he became a trustee of the Foundation, and in 2017, an associate of Living Earth Limited, a new social enterprise created when the trustees of the Living Earth Foundation and The Conservation Foundation decided to merge the two organizations. He is also an associate of The Partnering Initiative.
Neil’s expertise is working with local people to help them benefit from wildlife conservation, notably through identifying and supporting the implementation of sustainable development projects that promote change from subsistence to trade.
Neil believes that finding ‘win-wins’ for people and the environment is key, and uses his business analytical skills, and extensive knowledge on conservation and rural communities to help deliver ‘solutions’ that are locally owned, sustainably managed, and realistic in what they can achieve. Neil has an MBA in pro-poor, sustainable ecotourism and is a respected member of several high-level international conservation specialist groups.
Trevor Rees is a social entrepreneur and consultant working with issues of leadership and sustainability for more than 20 years, including in senior positions in international organisations in the role of strategic partnerships and business development. Trevor established his consultancy after 8 years working as the Head of Development for the Rockefeller Foundation Leadership for Environment and Development (LEAD) Programme. Trevor has designed and managed experiential leadership programmes modeled on Theory U (Scharmer) and Adaptive Leadership (Heifetz) for corporate clients including HSBC and Standard Chartered. Trevor developed a portfolio of climate-change related projects for LEAD and led on the partnership component of the Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN).
Trevor founded EnSo Impact in 2017 and also works with Adaptive Change Advisors, using the framework and practice of adaptive leadership to address complex global challenges. Trevor has significant experience of working with different sectors, facilitating stakeholder engagement, brokering partnerships and developing projects recent engagements include:
Review of sustainability reporting guidelines for the oil and gas sector – as part of stakeholder panel for IPIECA (global oil and gas association).Delivery of in-house Adaptive Leadership programme for global technology company.