Meet The Team at SO
We are two brothers, a great friend and a group of wonderful colleagues on a mission. We are pretty passionate about the world around us; community, people and the environment. As we look around the world, it’s hard (in fact very, very hard) not to notice the inequity, the suffering, the poverty, the injustice. It’s all around us; shaping and challenging the way we live life (if we choose to look beyond our own immediate needs).
As we consider the billions of people who live in poverty, the tragedy of war, the negligence of greed, the injustice of inequity, and the fact that we are living in a world where our environment is in decline and the rate of decline is accelerating.....wow! This inspires, begs, challenges us, to do our bit for a better world.
We want to be an ‘altruistic business’, working for the good of others. We believe business can be about so much more than profit, so Sustainability Options has been established to ‘walk the talk’. Keen to hear more about our journey?
Phil has a young family, a history of business entrepreneurship, and became passionate about sustainability right about the time children came on the scene. Phil is an accredited Home Performance Advisor, has been trained in home ‘warrant of fitness’ development, and is a member of EMANZ and has had a crack a building a few sustainable homes. He is the fixer of the team. He tries to come up with the solutions and supplies that will enable 20 Degrees to fix the homes and help ensure they can operate at 20°C. He visits the homes referred to the programme, assesses what the home needs and what can be functionally done with the limited resources. He is also on the scrounge with how to... he doesn't understand, how not to. He tries to engage with other businesses to donate or repurpose seconds or damaged goods. His job is to deliver functional houses that are healthy and operate at 20°C.
Jo's been involved in sustainability for over 10 years, focusing on business, energy, transport and housing. She's a long time advocate, raising awareness of the relationship between social equity, environmental quality and urban well-being and is actively involved with Trade Aid, community groups and movements towards these outcomes. Jo is trained in The Natural Step, is a certified Home Performance Advisor, writes about sustainability and believes in a world where people are prioritised over profit. Jo is an ultimate connector, creating relationships with many different agencies, organisations, hauora, trusts and whanau ora groups to extend the reach of the programme. All this AND she runs the healthy homes and DIY workshop programme, talk about a powerhouse!
Has a corporate management background. He’s always been passionate about ‘business for good’ and he began to see the ‘sustainability’ light through good advice from his wife. With a family of young adults, he wants to leave them a world to be proud of. Nik is a national HPA trainer with 13 years involvement in housing performance and a bunch of associated accreditations. He has supported and lead a number of charitable and community focused organisations. He's the talker and dreamer of the team, passionately and enthusiastically talking up what's happening, how things are going and what needs to happen next. Nik's mahi is to make sure that everyone who needs to know about the programme, is on board.
Amir is one of our amazing Home Assessors. He is out there talking with families about how they can keep their homes warm and dry over winter. Amir has a deep desire to help as much as he possibly can, he loves to chat and to understand what is important to the whānau/family and to work out how he can do that 'little bit more' that will help them and help their home. Amir works closely with the whānau/family, actually implementing the planned actions that have been agreed.
Lee has a background in public health, environmental sustainability, and a passion for helping others and fighting inequities. When she moved to New Zealand in 2017, she quickly noticed how cold our houses are here and is doing her best to change that. Lee is the 20 Degrees programme coordinator. That's short for; she is the person that makes everything happen. Lee follows through on all the home visits and assessments, she stays in touch with the whānau/families the programme is helping, she coordinates with the tradies who are helping with specialized work in the home, and she organizes our handyman team who work with the whānau/families on our repairs and maintenance activity. She keeps a handle on Phil, helps Nik with what is happening, and supports Jo with the workshop activity. She kinda does it all. When she isn't busy working, she can usually be found with her dog.
Jacqui is our programme support - she's kinda the boss, as it's Jacqui who schedules our time, focuses our efforts and follows up with all those whānau/families we are seeking to help. She wants to make sure we are doing the best we can do. We are so happy to have Jacqui join our team, she has a compassionate heart, a lovely personality and a real desire to want to help improve the housing and living conditions for all. As we receive over a 1000 visit requests each year, it's Jacqui who organises us all to make sure we get to see as many homes as possible.
Willis is Phil's right hand man, actually he is the man! Willis is the one who is busy doing the mahi. Willis loves to be in the thick of the action, helping people and being hands on with the tools actually implementing the repairs and maintenance tasks that have been planned. Willis has a genuine and caring nature, which makes him a great fit for Sustainability Options mahi.
Kirsty is super passionate about helping people and super compassionate when she does so. Kirsty has been coordinating the Healthy Homes BOP initiative for the past four years and she is absolutely key in helping identify whānau/families that we can help, need to help, want to help. Kirsty helps us with our initial engagement with families, touching base with them, introducing us and making sure that everyone is comfortable with how we are trying to help. Years down the track, Kirsty is still keeping a look out for each whānau she has engaged with, following up and keeping an eye on how things are going.
When Caleb finished up at University with a Degree in analysis, and expressed his compassion to help others, but to do it with analysis, we thought to ourselves, 'awesome', we need someone who is prepared to stay back and crunch the numbers for us. We are so busy out and about doing the mahi, that we don't have time to fully consider - how do we really know we are making a difference? But it's really important to consider, are we really helping people with lower energy costs? Are we really improving the warmth of people's homes? Are we actually decreasing the moisture in homes? Caleb's job is to help us measure and gather this information, so that we know what we are trying to do - is working.
Teri is our chatter. She talks to everyone in Sustainability Options and communicates it to the world. Through her Marketing and Communications role Teri ensures that everyone who wants to know more about our work, can find it out. Teri’s passion for helping others derives from her ambition to improve the way our societies care for our world. This contributes to both her social and environmental sustainability efforts.
Alex is one of our Health and Home Assessors. She spends a lot of her time talking with families who have children with health concerns and goes to their homes to help make the environment the child lives in warmer, drier, and safer. Alex has a background in Health promotion and, this drives her compassion, wanting to improve the health in the Bay of Plenty before hospitalisation is required.
Julie is part of our whānau experience team, conversing with families about the work we are doing in their home and educating around energy wellbeing in a home. Julie is a lively spirit with a passion for bettering the world around her.