the forest of memories team
Our team, Our Heroes CIC, was started by a small group of friends, family and old colleagues with the vision
– To celebrate the lives & achievements of those lost during the Covid19 pandemic, inspiring the next generation. –
From this vision, The Forest of Memories was born.
We describe ourselves as a For Impact Organisation.
We pride ourselves in doing things differently and our organisational core values mirror those of our forests: Sustainability, Accessibility, Education and Technology.
Sustainability – In order to be 100% sustainable, we must as an organisation innovate. In order to innovate, we believe in a collaborative environment that rewards teamwork.
Accessibility – In an ever-changing world, accelerated by lockdowns, our way of working has changed. We believe that co-workers should be enabled to work as they need to, to achieve their goals.
Education – ‘Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I may learn.’ Benjamin Franklin. We believe in a flat structure and nurturing environment that allows for collaboration and collective learning. We make decisions together and learn together.
Technology – We started life off as a technology idea, and the physical forest followed. We believe that everything can be improved with smart, ethical, and unintrusive technology.
The Forest of Memories
We will plant, at a minimum, a tree for every life lost in the UK because of Covid-19.
Each of The Forest of Memories will be created on the same themes and identity.
Designed in a way to remember everyone impacted by the pandemic, curating a historical record, but also to help fight climate change, benefit UK biodiversity, and become an educational and cultural resource for local communities that also creates ‘Green jobs’.
meet our members
Founder & Chief Vision Officer
Salmaan is our visionary. He was moved by a genuine desire to support those impacted by covid-19 and so began his mission to build dedicated, inspirational and sustainable spaces of remembrance, both physical and digital, which led to the creation of the Forest of Memories.
Chief Operations Director
James joined us when we were only an idea. Through his creativity, we have created a brand that can take us into the future. James’ background in IT, Sales, his creativity and his monumental dedication have made James part and parcel of the Forest of Memories.
Ifti is a successful businessman who became the first ever Muslim to be elected to Runnymede council in 2012. He rapidly worked his way up becoming Mayor in only 4 years. His Mayoral year was one of the most successful ever, integrating communities and raising over a million pounds in the Charity Walk for Peace which was also one of the largest fundraisers organised and hosted by a mayor. Ifti went on to become Chairman of community services in Runnymede and was also appointed as a hospital governor at St Peter’s hospital trust. He is actively out promoting the forest of memories in institutions from International embassies to schools and hospitals.
Lisa Cameron is a Scottish National Party politician and consultant clinical psychologist. She has been the Member of Parliament for East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow since winning the seat at the 2015 general election. She was re-elected at the 2017 and 2019 general. elections.
Lisa was one of the first MPs to return our calls to The Forest of Memories and became one of our greatest advocates. In December 2020, she tabled an Early Day Motion, to highlight the work of The Forest of Memories. No less than 18 MPs signed the EDM. She has also introduced us to the Blackwood Estate, APPG and the ICCF to name a few.
Business Development Director
Matt was part of the inception of The Forest of Memories and helped piece together a solution for the bereaved. Matt heads up our sales and business development.
Dave, a natural project manager, has been with The Forest of Memories from the beginning and helps us keep on top of our projects at a high level.
A qualified company lawyer with over 10 years of commercial experience, Sara has helped us from inception to make The Forest of Memories a reality.
Forest Of Memories Webmaster
Alex is experienced in almost all areas of anything ‘online’ and often ‘offline’ too. Alex has helped us develop our new look Forest of Memories website as well as advising on SEO content. Alex came on board following a cause and meticulously works to make it a reality.
Memory Trees Platform Development
Hamzah is the Director of WeAreHype Marketing Agency who has partnered with Memory Trees and the Forest of Memories to create the Memory Trees platform. Moved by Salmaan’s vision, and the loss of his father, Hamzah values the importance of creating dedicated, inspirational, and sustainable spaces of remembrance and looks forward to being a key member of the team.
Ruby came to us with strong experience in corporate communications, event management, PR campaigns and stakeholder engagement. With a real passion to make difference, Ruby has taken on our communications to the next level.
Content Creator & Videographer
Sophie Apps is a third-year English Literature student at Swansea University. Currently, she is working on a screenplay, along with her dissertation which is a feminist focus on film adaptations of Little Women which is fuelled by her interest in gender
Interim Head of Fundraising
Masood joined the team in 2022, at an exciting and pivotal time in the Forest of Memories evolution, with the aim of leveraging his background and experience in Sales, Relationship and Account Management, Coaching and the Not-For-Profit sector to support us in sourcing funding to grow our venture
Gemma Brown is passionate about the environment and social projects that connect to it.
Gemma is excited about working for The Forest of Memories to support funding for this exciting project and to open up nature and all its benefits to a wider population of society, encouraging conversations around societal issues in tandem with more areas of ecological biodiversity across the UK.
Oral History Creator
Siobhán is an experienced Oral History Consultant/Producer & Trainer. She is intramental in testing and putting together our oral history project for our Memory Trees platform.
Siobhán when not helping The Forest of Memories can be found lecturing at Birmingham University and also works with other charities such as the Down’s Syndrome Association.
Syed has been with us from the beginning and initially stepped into a new role, in marketing, to try to help the cause of The Forest of Memories.
Syed although not involved day to day, assists us in business strategy and leadership. His background as a lawyer helps him to assist Sara in compliance and legal matters.
Veronika is a London based photographer, but also works with clients across the Uk and Europe on a variety of projects and events. Her main business focus is wedding and portrait photography, but she is also interested in contemporary social stories. Veronika loves to document the real essence of life around her through visual storytelling. As the Covid-19 pandemic hit her business and she herself found it difficult to make sense of this challenging time, she became increasingly interested in other people’s stories. How were those who lost loved ones coping? Did they have enough time and space to grieve? These questions led her to realise how important it is to find a way to talk about grief and share what we have gone through individually, to help us heal as a collective. Veronika was moved by The Forest of Memories project and decided to find a way to help with her photography. Her aim is to create a visual body of work that will offer an honest documentation about the process and the people behind this campaign as well as the families involved.
Join our team
We are currently undergoing sustained growth, and therefore are always looking to recruit like-minded, talented individuals. If you would like to be considered, please send an opening letter highlighting your experience and why you would like to work for us. Please email info@TheForestofMemories.com