Samir Lakhani is a social entrepreneur dedicated to restoring health and dignity to developing countries. Prior to founding Eco-Soap Bank in 2014, Samir was deeply involved in aquaculture and nutrition projects in northern Cambodian villages. He has also developed solar lighting solution projects in Cambodia, Bangladesh, and Nepal. Through his four years of nonprofit work in the areas of nutrition, water accessibility, and sanitation/hygiene, he has witnessed firsthand how delivering key products like soap transform the health and well-being of impoverished communities. He is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and currently lives in Pittsburgh, PA.
Frank serves as the digital director for Eco-Soap Bank. He earned a bachelor's degree in letters, arts, and sciences from Penn State University and is now studying computer science at the University of Central Florida. He's constantly on the lookout for ways that technological innovation can help solve human problems. He spends most of his time reading, writing, coding, and designing.
Ung Chanrattana is the onsite director of Eco-Soap Bank's headquarters in Siem Reap, Cambodia. He manages local staff and oversees the collection, production, and distribution of soap. He is the founder and executive director of Trailblazer Cambodia Organization, which implements WASH programs in targeted rural areas. He previously worked for non-profit NGOs including Banteay Srei Conservation Projects and School Construction Project.
He earned a bachelor's degree in Fishery Science at the Royal University of Agriculture in 2002 and an MBA from Build Bright University in Siem Reap.
Margherita operates the Phnom Penh branch of Eco-Soap Bank, working directly with families living in slums to provide employment and redirect soap waste to those living in harsh conditions. She also serves as a development officer for Indochina Starfish Foundation, which provides free education to slum children and organizes a football league—an incredibly rare opportunity for the children of Phnom Penh.
Jen serves as the country director of the Goodwill Center Sihanoukville—a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing a safe space for children living in Sihanoukville slums—and as Eco-Soap Bank's direct implementation partner working to provide livelihoods and improve island and coastal hygiene in Cambodia. Jen firmly believes and has observed how improved hygiene affects the overall well-being of community members in Sihanoukville.
Giulia operates Eco-Soap Bank’s fourth soap recycling initiative in Battambang in direct collaboration with Children’s Future International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering a generation of educated, self-reliant, and compassionate role models for Cambodia by promoting child rights and offering 21st century education and opportunities to the poorest children in rural Cambodia.
In 2016, while working with Angkor Hospital for Children, Nicky was first exposed to Eco-Soap Bank's headquarters in Siem Reap and quickly realized its potential in her home country of Nepal. Currently, she is an Eco-Soap Bank Project Director working to establish a new branch in Kathmandu with Nyeshang Manang Women Society. She holds a Master’s Degree in International Development from the London School of Economics.
Phillip is the country manager for Hope Shines, a nonprofit dedicated to enhancing and improving the lives of orphans & vulnerable children (OVC) in Rwanda through unique education and health programs. Hope Shines is Eco-Soap Bank's direct implementation partner handling soap recycling and distribution efforts in Rwanda. Through the partnership, we hope to help create employment opportunities for Rwandans as well as improve Rwandan schools' access to hygiene.
Greta Puodziunaite is a fourth-year student of International Politics and Development at Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania. Her background includes working solely in the field of tourism, but as a newcomer to the development field she is gaining valuable knowledge through volunteering projects around Asia. The exploration of developing countries such as the Philippines, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Cambodia are the small steps towards her ambition to become a fully qualified and experienced development specialist. After graduation, she wishes to pursue a master's degree in studies related to social, economic, and political development and poverty alleviation. Regarding personal interests, she has a big enthusiasm for learning languages, reading, and doing solo travels.