Meet the Team
Arjan de Groene, Coordinator Caribbean
A marine biologist by training, Arjan has spent much of his time around coral reefs and the people depending on them. From researching connectivity between mangroves, seagrass beds and coral reefs in Zanzibar and Curaçao to coral reef mapping in Seychelles, he has a keen interest in how marine ecosystems work and more importantly, how we can make sure these magnificent underwater rainforests remain intact and continue to support the people depending on them.
This is one of the reasons he decided to lead a local nature NGO in Seychelles to build a bridge between island conservation and the private sector, restoring small islands as biodiversity refuges for endangered species. Since 2016 Arjan works as coordinator for the WWF-NL Caribbean program, supporting our local teams on Bonaire and elsewhere to work with local organizations and communities to make sure future generations will be able to enjoy the beauty and benefits of healthy coral reefs and flagship species like whales, sea turtles and sharks.
Monique de Water, Program Manager
As her name already suggests, Monique has a passion for the ocean. Since her first dive, she has been fascinated by the underworld, its beauty, the animals and coral reefs, the vast area and depths, and colors of the ocean.
Monique has an extensive track record in ocean conservation. She fulfilled several roles at various conservation organizations and for the last 15 years she has been working on ocean conservation for WWF-NL. She has a Master’s degree in Biology and one in Environmental Policy and Law. After obtaining her studies, Monique started her career working with marine mammals.
This educational background and broad work experience are very useful in her current position as Program Manager for the Dutch Caribbean Program. She is committed to safeguarding coastal systems (such as corals and mangroves) and flagships species (turtles, whales, and dolphins). Monique likes to collaborate with all stakeholders to bring across the need and possibilities for change to preserve the oceans for future generations. In her free time, she likes to enjoy the sea by going diving and sailing the oceans.
Stacey Mac Donald, Program Advisor
Stacey joined the WWF-NL team in November 2020 but has worked with WWF-NL since 2017. She is born and raised on Curacao, and always had a keen interest in the interactions between humans and the environment. Stacey works as a program advisor for the Dutch Caribbean Program, and works with the team on community engagement, fisheries management, governance, and species protection in the Caribbean Region.
She has a PhD in Psychology and Anthropology and her research focused on understanding the underlying social and psychological processes that guide nature conservation in the Caribbean. Her focus lies on creating harmonious and healthy environments for all by guiding and facilitating locally driven inclusive conservation management processes with all layers of the community.
Carolyn Caporusso, Program Advisor
Carolyn has been coordinating Clean Coast Bonaire, a volunteer-based marine litter monitoring program in the Caribbean Netherlands, on behalf of WWF-NL since 2018. She recently expanded her role and became a program advisor for the Dutch Caribbean Program in June 2022.
An experienced educator and environmental advocate, her professional achievements include international coordination of environmental insurance litigation, development of educational programs for scuba divers, and dive center management. She coordinated large-scale citizen science underwater cleanups, initiated Debris Free Bonaire, serves on the board of A Plastic Free Bonaire, and drafted the Action Plan for harmonization of litter monitoring in the Caribbean region. She hopes that her work highlights why the marine environment matters, and what steps we all must take to protect our valuable natural resources.
Evita Sanches, Communications Advisor
Evita is a communication expert that loves to K.I.S.S. She translates (sometimes complex) information on nature conservation in the Dutch Caribbean, into concise stories and messages to Keep It Short and Simple for all publics. At WWF she is responsible for the communication tasks related to the Dutch Caribbean program.
She applies the knowledge obtained from her Master’s Degree in Communication Science and experience as a Marketing & Communication consultant, to create communication strategies for the region, with the purpose to inform, educate, and engage others. Evita has lived and worked in the Netherlands, Spain, and Morocco but she remains a child of the tropics. She was born and raised in Suriname and currently resides in Curaçao. When she’s not at work you can find her spending time outdoors, enjoying nature.