Between us we have over 30 years professional experience in volunteering, international development, social enterprise and business. We’re a team of career changers, global changemakers, aspiring F1 drivers and youth development professionals.
_Co-Founder // India Director
It was whilst on a volunteer programme in Peru that Anna had the profound realisation that she had the ability to make a positive impact in people’s lives. Wanting to share this experience with other people, she set up and ran a two year volunteer programme in Peru whilst at The University of Leeds, for which she was nominated for Woman of The Future Voluntary Award. Since then she has racked up 7 years of experience in the Development sector in fundraising and volunteer management, ran youth volunteer programmes overseas for organisations such as VSO, Balloon Kenya and Project Peru and worked with nearly 200 volunteers around the world. During her time at Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) Anna managed the very first ICS volunteer programmes in Kenya and has been working in volunteer management ever since. Anna passionately believes that volunteering can develop, empower and educate people, but most importantly it’s an opportunity to enable and inspire those to make change in their own communities. When she isn’t working on _SocialStarters her favourite things to do are dance, travel, laugh and take photos.
_Co-Founder // UK Director
Andrea read the 4 Hour Work Week and everything changed. After 15 years’ experience developing & launching digital and above the line media projects for some of the world’s largest brands, media and charities she wanted to do something different. She started volunteering, mentoring offenders and young creative talent, whilst travelling as much as she could to hard to reach places. The turning point came when South London’s youth-run magazine LiveMagUK lost funding and she joined youth communication specialists Livity (Queens Award for Enterprise 2013, 50 New Radicals 2012, E&Y Social Entrepreneurs of the Year 2012), to turn LiveMagUK into a sustainable digital youth engagement project that saw official partnerships with Google & the Guardian. She has a passion for personal development and wants to help other people make the career moves they desire, http://healthsavy.com/product/zithromax/ learning more about themselves whilst building knowledge and confidence in the area of social entrepreneurship. She’s always writing about it on her blog and has the ambition to write a book some day. When she’s not working she’ll be experimenting in the kitchen (and totally prepared to fail) or reading the late great guru, Osho.
Jiselle is a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellow who confirmed her love for Brazil and working with young people and social enterprises during a 2 month research project exploring whether social enterprise could be a catalyst for change amongst young Brazilians. With over 9 years’ experience managing projects and working with organisations across the voluntary, public, private and social enterprise sectors, Jiselle is passionate about working with young people and empowering them to create access opportunities which develop them professionally and personally. Jiselle has led and worked in partnership with a range of creative, cultural and entrepreneurial programmes and organisations across the UK and Brazil and is driven by the potential for these initiatives to bring about change in communities. Alongside her role as in-country Programme Director for _SocialStarters, Jiselle has recently joined the project committee for UM Rio, a rugby for development training programme aimed at children and young people from a favela community in Nitéroi to develop their educational offer.
As a young girl, Anna either wanted to be the first successful female F1 driver, or the first female chancellor of Germany. After Angela Merkel was elected and Anna realised that her driving skills are just as good as her knitting (terrible), she realised that all her aspirations had one thing in common: she wants to be a change maker. Receiving a Bachelor in Economics, and having plans to complete a masters degree in Development Studies, she is following her passion to make the world more equal economically and socially. She believes strongly that grassroot movements and entrepreneurship can provide solutions to local, national and international challenges. After working with _SocialStarters in Brazil, she is now running the programmes in India. Anna loves the immersion experience – talking to locals, trying new foods and discovering new places. If you can’t find her sweating in the gym, she will be eating carrot cake at the local bakery.