What would TIP TOP be without their trainers? Each of our unique trainers makes TIP TOP a diverse and lively team. Each month we’ll be highlighting two trainers, and this month we’re proud to present to you, one of our veteran trainers; Lis.
Lis was born in Bristol, England and grew up in Ironbridge, a “sandwich child”, with an older and a younger brother. She enjoyed a happy childhood full of action; building treehouses, games of cricket, campfires and scrambling in the woods. Her mother was a University lecturer and her father a museum director.
At the age of 18, Lis left home to study Geography at the University of Durham. Lis loved the student life and graduated with honors in 1989. At age 21 Lis moved to Geneva to take up a trainee position for the WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature), where she worked in all departments. This is where she also met her husband, a German graphic design student from Wiesbaden.
Lis went on Mauritius to work for the Mauritian Wildlife Trust (in cooperation with the WWF), where she lived for four years, and then to Madagascar where she worked for the Madagascar Fauna Group and WWF. Lis describes Madagascar as having been a stark contrast to Mauritius; where Mauritius was a beautiful tropical island, rich in culture and history, Madagascar majority lives in desperate poverty in spite of its beautiful landscapes, fascinating wildlife and charming people.
Lis spent a year in Madagascar working as an environmental educator and during that time also had the opportunity to travel extensively through the country. She made a hobby of sketching and painting pictures of what she saw; her collection of her artwork along with photographs still bring her immense joy.
Lis returned to Britian in 1994 and married a year later. The pair moved to Wiesbaden where Lis was confronted with the challenge of learning to speak German. She mastered this with the help of her husband and went on to work as a freelance environmental consultant for various organizations, but also continued to travel back and forth to Madagascar continuing work for the Madagascar Fauna Group.