News

Meet our NEW Project Specialist, Francisca (Kika) Gusmão!

On February 1, Kika began working for the Global Tree Initiative (GTI) on a contract basis, for the next six months.

It is your recent contributions to our GivingTuesday and GivingDecember fundraisers that made hiring Kika possible. We are extremely grateful for your generosity. Thank you for contributing towards fulfilling the vision and mission of the Global Tree Initiative and our founder, Tenzin Osel Hita! Having another set of dedicated hands working on the GTI will help us make our GTI platform even stronger.

(Once the remaining funding is secured, Kika’s contract will be extended for the balance of the year).

About Kika

Kika holds a BSc degree in Biology (Faculdade de Ciências de Universidade de Lisboa, Portugal). Following undergraduate school, Kita earned an MSc degree in Forest and Nature Conservation from Wageningen University, The Netherlands.

Kika says, “During my bachelor’ studies, I fell in love with nature conservation, and with the idea of helping animals in the wild. When I started the MSc program, I felt something was missing – the humane dimension of nature conservation.”

While conducting interviews for her thesis project, about the relationship between Buddhist core values and pro-environmental behavior, Kika met the Global Tree Initiative (GTI).

Kika joined our team as the regional coordinator volunteer for Portugal in April 2021. She focused on environmental education. Backed by GTI’s mission and vision, Kika and her team aspire to make environmental education accessible to everyone in her country!

Now, 23 years old (or young!) Kika tells us “As I begin my professional life, I do not want to simply work my days through. I want to bring meaning to my life. I want to do that every day. GTI has seen right through what the world needs – love, unity, awareness, and movement upon these feelings. More than being an ecologist, I want to be an uniter. I want to bring people together. Tree planting is a great opportunity to do so.”

Besides being passionate about trees, nature, and the environment, Kika has other passions too. She loves cooking, especially plant-based meals. She delights in cooking for others. She also enjoys spending time outdoors and passing leisure hours with friends and family. When she was younger, Kika used to do horse riding. She says she would love to get back into it someday.

As if that were not enough, Kika also volunteers for local social development and environmental projects in Portugal.

Thank you for joining our team, Kika!  We are so happy and thankful to have you here!
We are looking forward to growing our project with your knowledge, skills, and kind heart.

Please share this. Thank you!

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