Hamish Craig is a retired teacher and naval officer who now runs an environmental education centre in Somerset. He and his wife give to more than a dozen charities and are particularly passionate about environmental and development causes.

Through international development charity Compassion, they’ve been supporting a girl in the Philippines from a young age, helping her through ten years of education.  

“My hobby has always been fell walking and mountain hiking and I’ve walked all over the UK – from Scotland to the south coast – and when I joined the Navy, this was only encouraged. My father was a farmer – so I grew up very conscious of the deterioration of wildlife around me – which got me thinking that I should preserve it. Those two things definitely started my passion for wildlife and environmental conservation, and that must have somehow got me into charitable work.

“The Navy took me to the Arctic and the Antarctic and one of my sisters also lives in Canada – so I’m very well travelled. Having visited places like Bangladesh, Mumbai, Nepal, among others, you realise how horrendous life is around the world.

“Rio hit me far more than other places because it was Western. We were there in 1982 and were menaced the whole time. It was very difficult because if you gave money to anyone, you had to give to a whole load of people. So I suppose for this reason we support a lot of charities focused on international development.

“Most of the time, we think we can’t give enough for charities. A phrase we’ve been thinking about lately when it comes to environment is: ‘think globally, act locally’. And I think the same thing must apply to giving.”