About Us

How JCJ began 

Jim and Kanchana met in 2010 and discovered their mutual interest in climate justice. Kanchana was living in Sri Lanka and wanted to improve environmental awareness there, and Jim had connections with people in Australia wanting to offset carbon emissions more effectively – so JCJ was born.

Most carbon offset programs on offer at that time were limited to tree plantations with dubious or unknown long-term climate effects, and Jim felt that JCJ could offer an innovative alternative.

JCJ became an Incorporated Association in January 2011, with a launch by the Governor of Victoria that March, and the first project run in Sri Lanka in August 2011.

Learn more about the full history of projects JCJ has organised and supported.

About JCJ Committee 

We are an entirely volunteer-run organisation; our committee members meet monthly and do the bulk of the work running the organisation with the aid of volunteers who take on occasional or ad hoc tasks.

Some of our key volunteers are listed below.

Kanchana Weerakoon -Journeys for Climate Justice Co-founder

Kanchana Weerakoon
Co-founder & Committee Member

Kanchana is a renowned Sri Lankan ecologist with more than 15 years of local and international conservation experience. Kanchana came up with the idea of the Journeys (Yathras) as a way of building momentum for action on climate change. Kanchana is the founder, president and spokesperson for Sri Lankan volunteer-based environmental organisation ECO-V.

Jim Crosthwaite - Journeys for Climate Justice Co-founder

Jim Crosthwaite

Jim is a co-founder of JCJ. After lecturing in the economics of climate change and forming the Safe Climate Economics Group, he began to personally offset emissions in ways that tested alternative possibilities. Jim has worked as an environmental economist since 1988 and is currently a teacher of the Alexander Technique.

Alex Lashchuck

Alex is an experienced event professional with a strong background in Asian studies. She has been an active member of JCJ since 2021, starting as a social media volunteer and advancing to a committee member before being elected president in 2024. Alex aims to use her diverse skill set to enhance JCJ’s in-person and online events. 

Tony Gleeson Journeys for Climate Justice

Tony Gleeson
Vice President  

Tony is a climate solution seeker who taught high school English & student leadership for over 3 decades. He co-hosts a weekly show on community radio in Geelong (www.climatesafety.info/thesustainablehour) and is active in many climate groups in Melbourne. In particular, he is a foundation member of Extinction Rebellion in Victoria, where he is a member of the non-violent direct action, climate justice & legal support working groups.

Jack Schmidt Journeys for Climate Justice

Jack Schmidt

Jack is a mechanical engineer with many years of experience working for environmental groups. He co-founded the Mullum Branch of ACF, is a longstanding member of Environment Victoria, and has been actively involved in many environmental movements such as the Franklin River and Errinundra Plateau campaigns.

Sophie Schmidt

Malaika Jaovisidha
Social Media & Communications Manager

Malaika is a science communicator and behaviour change enthusiast, passionate about using communication as a tool to drive change for good. Recently completing the Masters of Environment and Sustainability at Monash University, Malaika hopes to continue to work with initiatives that address climate and social justice issues, bolstering a more equitable and sustainable future for people and planet.

Natalie Laussade-Long
Committee Member

Natalie is a Monash University graduate with a Bachelor in Human Geography and International Studies. She has volunteered for many environmental and climate-action related organisations, and now works as a Graduate Sustainability Consultant. She is passionate about sustainability, international development and climate action, all areas she hopes to continue to work in throughout her life.  

Elyane Laussade
Committee Member

Elyane is a concert pianist whose mission is to make the world a better place “one note at a time.”  Her awareness of the climate emergency, in particular the plight of the Carteret Islanders, inspired her to join JCJ so that she can help their and others’ dire situation in even a small way.

Back to top