Catalyst Programme: Mentors & Speakers

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Catalyst Programme – Empowering & Skilling Young Women for Sustainable Futures

  • Are you Dreaming of a Green Career but not quite sure how to achieve it?
  • Would you like practical tools to help you deal with Stress and Anxiety?
  • Could you use some help to build your Self-belief and Confidence – to get your voice heard?

The Catalyst Programme is an inspiring, empowering & skilling programme for young women – 16 -24 years – who want to create a more sustainable future. This includes the Catayst Summit (online) and the Catalyst Bootcamp, a 3-day residential, will provide you with the inspiration, confidence and skills to be the ‘change you wish to see in the world.’

The Mentors will be running projects around seven core sustainability themes. The Speakers will provide Career guidance and inspiration, while the Facilitators will ensure everyone gets what they need from the event.

CATALYST SUMMIT & BOOTCAMP – Meet Some of our Previous Speakers & Mentors

LEADER: Cllr Cleo Lake is Lord Mayor of Bristol. She was a Green Party Councillor nominated and sworn in as the 801st and 11th only female Lord Mayor of Bristol on May 22nd 2018. Her focus for the year is community outreach through arts and events and recognising the UN Decade for People of African Descent. She also has a passion in the arts, history, culture, community and youth empowerment through the arts. She is also an environmental advocate. Concerned about education on Bristol’s role in the Transatlantic Slave Trade, she is advocating for a centre of African excellence in Bristol as well as being in the process of setting up a foundation for youth opportunities in West Africa.


FOOD: Jen Best, Poco  Jen’s passions have always been focused on learning how to cultivate and nurture circular economies, beginning with her studies in PPE at Manchester University, focusing on justice in war, but taking a strong interest in efficiency in the food industry.  Jen, with three friends, decided to set up a restaurant called Poco in Bristol’s bohemian quarter of Stokes Croft. Six years on and Poco has many awards to its name. In 2016 Poco scored a hat trick and won ‘Restaurant of the year’, ‘Best Independent Restaurant’ and ‘English Champion’ at The Sustainable Restaurant Associations The Food Made Good Awards. Ethical sourcing and quality food and drink is clearly a big focus for Poco but Jen’s main passion lies with nurturing a community within her team and the surrounding food network in the city.


WATER: Natalie Fee, City to Sea  is an award-winning environmental campaigner, author and founder of City to Sea, a multi-award winning non-profit organisation running campaigns to stop plastic pollution at source. Their primary campaigns are #Refill, a free tapwater initiative promoting reuse across the UK and #SwitchtheStick, their successful cotton bud campaign which called on all UK retailers to switch from plastic to paper stem buds, stopping over 400 tonnes a year of single-use plastic at source! And #PlasticFreePeriods, a campaigning bringing awareness to plastics in our menstural products while highlighting alternatives available to us.


Resources Bootcamp Mentor

Nicci Peck

RESOURCES: Nicci Peck has been the CEO of SOFA Project for the last three years with a wealth of management experience in both the commercial and the charity sector in Bristol and Bath; prior to that she devised & managed projects for a national charity helping the long-term unemployed into work; this field remains a huge passion to this day. Her career path there encompassed living and working in Germany and Israel, as well as being a buyer in high street retail, property management for a glorious five years, running a pub in Bath and even a stint painting & decorating. You name it, she’s probably done it, or at the very least, seen it. Read more about Nicci’s Career Path



TRANSPORT: Megan Streb currently works at the charity Sustrans and in partnership with local authorities in the South of England, promoting walking, cycling and more liveable neighbourhoods. She joined the charity in 2013 as part of the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) programme in Southampton where she is based, and in 2016 she gave an inspirational TEDx talk, ‘The Power of Liveable Cities’, where she explored how we can be more connected to ourselves, our community and our environment. Originally from the United States, Megan has worked in community engagement and behaviour change projects since 2000.



ENERGY: Jenny Coles joined CSE in August 2017 to develop new ideas and projects and to secure funding for the organisations’ mission. She is motivated by climate change and social justice and believes that much of the unfairness we see in our communities is linked to the environmental crisis unfolding in our world. She is especially interested in projects which link the sustainable energy and fuel poverty agendas with wider issues such as housing, education and economic development.




NATURE: Gemma Windle is a Database Administrator at TREE AID, where she looks after their Raiser’s Edge database across the whole fundraising team. She also enjoys assisting with ad hoc community fundraising events at TREE AID.
Currently, much of her spare time is spent on her voluntary roles on the RSPB Schools Outreach team, and as Chair for the Bristol Nature Network (BNN), a voluntary organisation for young people with a passion for nature in Bristol. They have over 1,500 members and run a busy program of events, talks, trips and networking meets. 



WELLBEING & RESILIENCE: Pip Roberts is a wellbeing practitioner for the modern world with a down to earth approach, a no nonsense guide to simple, inclusive practices that are easily implemented in real life.   A yogi, meditator and a coach she amalgamates her experience into workshop sessions on mindfulness to draw people back towards themselves.




Rhian Sherrington

CAREER COACH: Rhian Sherrington is a Career and Executive Coach (ACC) who holds a Masters in Environmental Management and prior to setting up her own coaching and training business, enjoyed a successful career in behaviour change in the charitable sector and central Government. She is an award winning author, international speaker and founder of ‘Women in Sustainability’, a network and learning community enabling women to flourish in careers that are creating a sustainable world. Rhian’s Career Path


CAMPAIGNER: Alysha Rama is Partnerships Manager at Amnesty International. An ambitious, enthusiastic and dedicated account, project and people manager. Passionate about working in partnerships, to give young people the tools to create their own change. She is a confident facilitator for both youth and corporate audiences, with experience of working across 7 figure national and global partnerships. Alysha is organised, creative and innovative with a wide range of skills; from managing youth programmes, to designing and implementing new business strategy.


Julie Ellison

SOCIAL ENTREPRENEUR: Julie Ellison is a passionate advocate of social enterprise, starting her first social venture in the 1980s! After completing an MBA she specialised in social enterprise business support and was MD of Social Enterprise Works CIC. Julie is now delivering enterprise education to students in Higher Education and contributing to the development of an ecosystem of support for social entrepreneurship.




Inspirational Speakers & Facilitators
Jenna Holliday headshot

Jenna Holliday

Jenna Holliday, Gender rights  Jenna is an adept gender researcher and practitioner with a keen ability to develop and implement strategic gender specific and gender-responsive programming. Jenna has significant experience working with UN Women and the International Labour Organization, developing policy with a particular focus on women migrant workers’ rights. Her current research focuses on how the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development can be used to promote and protect the rights of women. Jenna’s Career Path

Rashida Noray, Head of Business Affairs and Studio Manager at Green.TV, Rashida  oversees the day to day running of the creative studio as well as strategy growth and partnerships. As a recent UWE graduate, she has a in depth understanding of making the somewhat scary leap into the big wide world of sustainability.



Rachel Quinn

Rachel Quinn, Senior Environmental Advisor, Skanska Construction Rachel has worked in many different types of construction from buildings, civil engineering and utilities work. With extensive experience across different areas e.g. water and contaminated land management, materials, carbon footprinting and ecology etc. Read more about Rachels Career




Mena Fombo

Mena Fombo Coach, facilitator & motivational speaker and activist. Campaigning for equality with focus on supporting young people & disadvantaged communities into confidently embracing their journey in life. Read more about Mena’s Career




Traci Lewis headshot

Traci Lewis

Traci Lewis, Social Entrepreneur Co-founded Catalyse Change CIC to empower & skill young women for sustainability. Traci has developed and delivered many successful environmental and sustainability change programmes – across the EU & SW England – for the Soil Association & with diverse range of people from organic farmers, Local Authorities to community groups. She now runs her own change agency Sustain-Live Consulting Ltd working with innovative businesses and social enterprises to achieve ‘One Planet Living.’ She lives in Bristol with her teenage daughter Kira and enjoys good food, festivals and camping in Devon.


Miriam Delagou, Managing Director, Bearpit Bristol CIC. Miriam grew up in Kuala Lumpur where she studied at a British International School. From a young age, she knew that she wanted to do her best to make a difference in the world so she volunteered in orphanages and local villages. After graduating with a degree in Art Direction, she worked in different European cities and then ended up in Bristol where she started working at the Bearpit.



Pearl Costello, Sustainability Project Officer, National Union of Students. In this role she works on behaviour change programmes in Higher Education and the NHS, encouraging staff and students to work in partnership to make their organisations more sustainable. Prior to this, Pearl was the first sustainability staff member for the Royal Agricultural University and delivered an award-winning sustainability programme which included gaining ISO14001 accreditation, improving campus biodiversity and installing renewable energy technologies. Pearl has a BSc in Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology and an MSc in Environmental Design of Buildings.



Helen Farmer – Inclusion Consultant for better work and workplaces, especially for gender, mental health and social inclusion. Marketing/Events/Community Manager for people & projects doing Responsible Business/Social Good.  Recent Highlights: Market Research – Sitting in my slippers Skyping a Brazilian Company from my kitchen. Setting up Bristol communities and events for Ecopreneurs, Urbanistas UK, Escape the City, and Bridging Cultures.




Jenny Hughes, Environment and Sustainability Consultant, Peter Brett  I work on a mixture of development projects and provide energy, sustainability and waste services.  The skills I’ve developed through studying geography are really important to my job – namely being able to step back and see the bigger picture. Organisation skills are really important to keep on top of lots of different projects. A range of communication skills are also crucial – you need to be able to write in various styles, and communicate (and work with) with a range of different people.  Jenny’s education pathway includes; MA Hons Geography and Politics (Edinburgh University), MSc (Ongoing) Environmental Management (Open University).


Kirsty Green-Mann, CSR Manager  Kirsty has over 20-years of experience from within the corporate business environment. For the last 10-years she was Head of Corporate Responsibility in a FTSE multinational with a global remit relating to corporate responsibility strategy, business and human rights, sustainability projects in the agricultural supply chain, sustainability reporting, stakeholder engagement and community investment, amongst others.  Kirsty originally started with a background in Engineering and has a Masters degree in Business Administration (MBA) from Cranfield University.



Sara Telhoun, Senior Technical Officer – Cities, CDP   Sara is a Cities and Climate Change measurement reporting specalist. Supporting the disclosure and reporting cycle for global cities to CDP. She led the development of the annual Cities climate change questionnaire and manages the annual global cities disclosure cycle and  outreach to 70 cities in Italy and Portugal, engaging with country partners. “I’ve always been very passionate about sustainability and I now can’t imagine working in another sector. I think it’s important to be excited by the work you do”.



Caroline Vail, ERM  is a sustainability specialist who works with leaders and multinational companies across Africa, Asia, Europe and the USA supporting them to understand their critical social and sustainability challenges (including health, safety, environmental, human rights and social performance), supporting them to design and implement practical solutions which also meet international standards and leading practice. Using her industry experience, Caroline supports clients to design sustainability management systems as well as develop capacity through training employees and contractors, managing change and influencing organisational culture.  


The 2021 Catalyst Summit is now available to book

How can I book? Visit to apply online. Free bursaries are available on APPLICATION.

All enquiries contact: Traci Lewis M 07870 268 654 @CatalyseCh INSTAGRAM catalyse change

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