Goumbook is dedicated to accelerating Sustainability and Climate Action in the UAE and beyond since 2009. We aim for high-impact change and to guide, inspire and empower businesses and individuals on their path towards setting and reaching sustainable development goals and ESG practices.

Goumbook was born to bring attention on the region’s efforts towards a greener economy and instead of choosing a name starting with ‘eco’ or ‘green’ we made sure it was strongly rooted into the local culture:

Goum’: the Bedouin tribe that used to travel around the desert from Persia up to Morocco, living together according to an ethic of self-help and  collective responsibility, sharing resources, reusing them when possible and avoiding wastage. In the UAE it is often written ‘Goam’, with the same tribal meaning. The original root of the word “‘qâma’, means to ‘get up’ / ‘stand up’ and in Arabia evolved to mean ‘rise up’.

Book’: refers both to reading our story together but also using the book to find sustainable resources, except our book is not a physical one but our website.

Goumbook’: stand up for a better future! The aim is to make all of us stand up for an ideal and unite towards a better world, sharing facts, ideas and advice on how to live a more responsible life.

Anything we can do together for the planet is a good thing for this and future generations.

Goumbook commitment for a sustainable future

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We are proud to be a Signatory of the United Nations Global Compact.

The UN Global Compact mission is to generate an international movement of sustainable companies, and impact companies and organisations to align their strategies and operations with Ten Universal Principles on human rights, labour standards, the environment and the fight against corruption, and to promote the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Our Team

The Goumbook team is characterized by its commitment for sustainability, environmental protection, and social impact. Since 2009, Goumbook has had the immense privilege to count on dedicated and highly skilled people who have made the company what it is today: mainly women from different nationalities, and with different professional specialties and backgrounds, who have contributed with their experience and knowledge to generate positive impact in the UAE and beyond.

“I believe each and every person in the team brings something special to the table, allowing our enterprise to bloom into an impactful organisation that is bringing change and transformation to the local community.”
Tatiana Antonelli Abella

Tatiana Antonelli Abella

Founder & Managing Director

Tatiana moved to the UAE in 2005 after studying Architecture and Urban Planning in Italy. She felt that she was in the right place at the right time to support sustainable development and raise awareness among the local community about curbing pollution, conserving natural resources, and reducing the impact on the environment.

Her passion for sustainability led her to found Goumbook in 2009, which created the first ‘green’ information resource in the MENA region. Her commitment to the environment blossomed into a sense of duty towards our youth and future generations.

In April 2019, Tatiana started Forward Talks, a podcast that highlights leaders and professionals who promote positive impact and sustainability in the UAE and beyond through their work, entrepreneurship, and commitment.

During her 18 years in the UAE, Tatiana has garnered a strong reputation and is actively involved in the green arena. She was nominated by LinkedIn as a UAE Top Voice in Sustainability in 2021 and 2022. Recently, she was awarded the Mother Teresa Award by Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, for Social Justice and Environmental Sustainability, under the patronage of Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Al Ketbi.

Considered one of the UAE’s pre-eminent experts, Tatiana regularly contributes to media and conferences in her role as a sustainability leader in the country

Carolin Hussein

Advocacy & Development Director

Having studied in Germany and Egypt, Carolin started her career at a grassroots NGO in Cairo working on various projects ranging from economic development and community empowerment to health and social inclusion.

Since coming to the UAE in 2009, Carolin has balanced working at the country’s biggest German-speaking publication, completing her Master’s degree in Sustainable Development Cooperation and raising her young children.

Carolin’s goal is to make a difference for the public. For her that means working on a few key issues, with an emphasis on social and environmental projects that can foster new ideas, establish cross-sectoral partnerships, and achieve tangible results that serve the public interest. Looking for a meaningful and impactful assignment, she joined Goumbook in 2020, sharing the enterprise’s approach that driven by the power of knowledge we can raise awareness, invigorate civic life and ultimately help solve today’s most challenging problems.

Samantha Kayruz

Strategy & Sustainability Impact Director

Samantha’s experience stems in the corporate world where she held regional and strategic positions across different industries.
Her previous experience is varied from Advertising & Communication, Business Strategy, E-commerce, Startups, Automotive, FMCG, Food Retail to name a few.

She also recently headed a global initiative tasked to develop, support and implement startup innovation solutions to tackle the UN SDGs and global pressing social and environmental issues, in conjunction with the various United Nations entities.

Samantha holds a Bachelor in Business Administration from the American University of Beirut, an ExecutiveMasters in Marketing & Sales from ESADE & Bocconi Universities along with “Business Sustainability Management certification from Cambridge University and Leading Sustainable Corporations from Oxford University’s Saïd Business School program, as well as being ESG GRI “Global Reporting Initiative” trained.

With a foot in the corporate world and another in the sustainability space, Samantha feels that purpose and profit can coexist, allowing all stakeholders to thrive; benefiting the economy, society and the environment to drive positive lasting impact.

Nicola Lee

Corporate Relations & Partnerships Director

Nicola has more than 14 years’ professional experience in the UAE with a focus in non-profits and social sustainability. 

She specializes in aligning to corporations sense of Purpose, attaining ESG and SDG objectives, relationship development and management, local governance and strategic planning and growth.

Nicola joined Goumbook in May 2023 supporting our sustainable initiatives including MENA Oceans Summit, Regenerative Agriculture Venture Programme and Take a Breath. 

 

Natacha Seker

Education & Collaboration Director

Natacha is an impact-driven project designer and manager, a sustainability advocate and consultant, with 15 year’s experience. Natacha joined Goumbook in June 2022 as Education and Collaboration Director. She is in charge of Project Development, Collaboration Management with a focus on Education and Awareness. 

Natacha loves building engaging and innovative programs / workshops / events, empowering all generations (Youth and Adults) for a Sustainable Future. Her focus is mainly on Climate Action, Circular Economy and Biodiversity Protection. 

Originally from France, she studied public policy management at Science-Po. She also hold a degree in “local development of the MENA region”. Before arriving in the UAE in 2021, she worked in many countries (Lebanon, Luxembourg, Turkey and Morocco) for diplomatic organisations, NGOs and, as a social entrepreneur as well.

A few years back, Natacha asked herself “What Earth are we leaving to our children” and I started to worry. Then, she changed the question into “What children do I want to leave to Earth”, and she felt empowered. She strongly believe in the power of awareness and education to change the most crucial challenges of our times. 

Anuradha Bhattacharya

Programme Development & Partnerships Senior Manager

Anuradha has 12 years’ experience driving research led program development, outreach strategies, project management and strategic partnerships for diverse knowledge sharing platforms across the energy, sustainability and development sectors in the MENASA regions.

She has a strong grasp of technical concepts in energy, climate and sustainability, and has developed and delivered content strategy and event programming, for multi-stakeholder projects for diverse virtual and in-person platforms including leadership accelerators, strategy and technical workshops, circular economy led capacity building community projects and digital publications. She is currently also pursuing a Certified Sustainability Manager course majoring as a SDG specialist (SDG frameworks and ISO26000 integration for organisations) by VERIFY Sweden. 

Janelle Lopez

CSR & Engagement Senior Manager

Janelle is a dynamic professional spearheading Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Employee Engagement initiatives at Goumbook. Her career is marked by over 12 years of valuable working experience, complemented by an educational background in Architecture and Interior Design. 

A passionate advocate for sustainability, Janelle brings creativity and dedication to her role. She collaborates with corporate clients, orchestrating meaningful team-building activities that leave a lasting impact. Her commitment ensures that participants not only enjoy a memorable experience but also gain valuable insights from each engagement. Beyond her role, Janelle works closely with campaign managers, providing crucial support in awareness-raising initiatives and handling organizational and administrative tasks.  

In addition to her commitment to sustainability, Janelle is a passionate advocate for animal welfare. She is actively supporting initiatives in the Philippines and in the UAE. Janelle’s dedication extends beyond corporate realms, embodying a holistic approach to creating a positive impact on both the environment and the well-being of animals.

A true artisan at heart, Janelle finds joy in creative pursuits, including drawing, painting, baking, and sewing. Her goal is to inspire others through her work, creating a positive impact and leaving a lasting legacy of change. 

Marta Roman

Business Development & Campaign Senior Manager

Marta joined Goumbook in May 2021 to support the launch of Dubai Can, a city-wide initiative by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai. As the project manager, she was responsible for promoting awareness and fostering behavioral change regarding single-use plastic water bottles.

Marta is a valuable asset to Goumbook, driving growth and creating opportunities through strategic initiatives and partnerships with the private sector. She also leads two impactful campaigns: “Save The Butts – Waste to Value” and “UNISOAP UAE – Recycling Soaps”, aimed at raising awareness about the impact of waste and circular economy solutions. 

Marta is an accomplished professional with a wealth of international experience. She relocated to Dubai in 2012 following a successful career spanning various countries. Armed with two university degrees and a master’s degree in PR and Communications, she further distinguished herself by obtaining a Cambridge certification in Sustainable Business Management.

Lama Saleh

Programme Development & Partnerships Senior Manager

Lama spearheads several educational and awareness campaigns aimed at fostering transformative change in the UAE and beyond. The campaigns include: “Take a Breath,” addressing indoor air quality for improved health and wellbeing; “Eat it or Save it,” tackling food waste across sectors; and “Fair Care”, working towards making healthcare products and services accessible to vulnerable communities. Lama‘s dedication and expertise are instrumental in driving these initiatives forward, making a lasting impact on planetary health and societal well-being. These initiatives focus on expanding social equity and scaling positive impact across communities.
 
With a professional background spanning across Dubai and Bahrain, Lama brings a wealth of experience acquired over 15 years. Her journey has traversed diverse roles: research and writing, project management, business development, and marketing and communications. Through this multidisciplinary skillset, Lama has made impactful contributions to various sectors, varying from a social impact business incubator and a social publisher to engagements in both the creative arts and technology industries. Recently, Lama completed a postgraduate certificate in Sustainable Development from SOAS, University of London, specializing in urban sustainability and climate adaptation. This educational milestone has equipped her with valuable insights, which she now channels into her role at Goumbook from June 2022.

Nasrin Suleiman

Business Development & Campaign Senior Manager

Nasrin, an advocate for environmental conservation, transitioned from impactful roles in Turtle and Elephant Conservation in Kenya to join the ‘Goum Team’ in 2013. Armed with a degree in Environmental Management, her journey began with active participation in the Give A Ghaf Tree Planting Program, aligning her aspirations with Goumbook’s environmentally-centered mission.

In 2020, Nasrin took on the role of Campaign Leader, showcasing her dedication and adaptability. Responding to the demand for large-scale tree planting, she led the Trees Matters initiative, collaborating globally and locally to plant Mangroves and keystone species.

Nasrin’s contribution extends beyond projects; she drives growth and opportunities through strategic initiatives and private-sector partnerships. As a leader, she spearheads impactful campaigns, “Give A Ghaf Tree Planting Program” and “Trees Matter – Restoration and Reforestation,” raising awareness about biodiversity, conservation, and climate action.

With a vision for impactful environmental change, Nasrin amplifies Goumbook’s mission, aiming to foster sustainable growth and inspire a global commitment to conservation.

Cecilia Romero

Implementation Manager

Cecilia, founder of the social enterprise Manta & Rebozo, is driven by a commitment to social impact.

Collaborating with Goumbook has been a transformative experience for her. She gained insights that helped refine her operational strategies and reinforced the importance of aligning business goals with social values.

As the Implementation Manager of the “Take a Breath” awareness campaign, Cecilia specializes in orchestrating comprehensive air quality studies from concept to implementation. Her role involves seamless coordination of suppliers, implementing targeted solutions, adept budget management, and fostering effective communication with diverse entities involved in the study. The campaign aims to improve indoor air quality and its impact on health by encouraging the monitoring of indoor air quality, understanding the source of pollutants, and empowering targeted actions to mitigate the dissemination of allergens and pollutants in our ambiance to transform the quality of the air we breathe.

Omaima Sirelkhatim

Education & CSR Manager

Omaima is a professional with an environmental background, having grown up in the UAE. Her roots in the region have instilled in her a profound understanding and commitment to the local environmental landscape. With a dedicated focus on supporting key educational initiatives, Omaima employs strategic planning and meticulous event organization to ensure the success of CSR projects. Possessing an academic background, Omaima holds a BSc Hons degree in Environmental Studies and Disasters Management, with a major in Organizational Management. Additionally, she is certified in Training of Trainers (TOT) and is an Advanced First Aid Attendant certified by Sanid. This academic foundation serves as the bedrock for her effective management of educational and CSR endeavours.

Omaima brings valuable experience from a previous role as an education officer. Leading program agendas, she fostered partnerships and notably increased engagement in educational activities across the UAE and the MENA region. Omaima aims to lead impactful projects that not only enhance the Environmental Education Curriculum but also foster sustainable practices. 

Her goal is to drive positive change by cultivating a culture of environmental consciousness, influencing both educational landscapes and corporate social responsibility paradigms. In her role at Goumbook, Omaima is excited to contribute meaningfully to the team, anticipating the creation of substantial positive change within the community.

Prachi Goel

Programme Manager

Prachi serves as a Project Manager at Goumbook, leading the Regenerative Agriculture venture. In this role, she manages the accelerator program, aligning it with the principles of sustainability and regenerative practices. Her expertise in content creation, social media, and design collaboration is integral to communicating Goumbook’s vision.

Prior to joining Goumbook in 2024, Prachi founded two e-commerce startups in Mumbai, India. DearCows, an app-based A2 milk delivery service, expanded into health foods, while Ecosys introduced eco-friendly capsule cleaners, promoting the practise of refill-reuse of existing plastic bottles. In 2022, she continued her entrepreneurial journey in Dubai as a Business Development Manager at Liquid of Life, enriching her experience in sustainable business strategies.

At Goumbook, Prachi applies her diverse skill set to drive impactful projects, focusing on efficiency through automation and workflow management across various initiatives.

Carl Valderrama

Admin & Accounts Officer

Experienced hospitality professional with a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management. Launched his career in Dubai in 2022 as an administrative officer, and concurrently engaged in volunteering for various environmental initiatives, fueled by a personal commitment to raise awareness for sustainable living.

Driven by his passion for making a positive environmental impact, he joined Goumbook as an administrative support/officer. His eagerness is directed towards contributing to the collective effort of raising awareness for our environment, with a particular aspiration to leave a lasting impact, especially on the younger generation.