The growing garden of A Rocha’s Friends

When A Rocha was founded in 1983, it was rare if not unheard of to come across others actively involved in conservation from Christian conviction. These days, there are individuals, groups and organizations across the globe who share our commitment to serve, study and protect species and habitats in God’s name. Some join the A Rocha Worldwide Family, and others become members of the Friends of A Rocha Network.

Here is a brief introduction to six of the newest members:

  • Brazil: FEPAS, a social work federation of over 400 churches in Brazil, offers support to dozens of projects across the country. FEPAS continues using the Environmental Education manual it co-published with A Rocha Brazil in 2015. Every project federated in FEPAS has a commitment to teach these materials every two to three years, to reach new cohorts of children and young people in their constituency.
  • Brazil: Project The Way is raising the quality of life of vulnerable children and youth in many ways, including setting up urban vegetable gardens with stingless bee hives in some of the most destitute neighbourhoods of São Paulo.
  • Cameroon: African Alliance for Developmental Action (AADA) has carried out conservation education, monitoring mangrove forests, bush meat and non-timber forest product trade. Currently it’s focusing on combating the illegal hardwood trade through environmental crime training sessions for magistrates, government workers and community leaders, the promotion of non-timber forest products and the collection of tree samples to improve product traceability and indirectly help with environmental crime prosecutions.
  • Rwanda: Global Initiative for Environment and Reconciliation (GER) believes that building peace cannot be achieved without also taking care of the environment. They have carried out a review of traditional knowledge associated with conservation and hosted an international event on connecting community seeds, culture and nature. Currently, GER is collaborating in programmes in agroecology, biodiversity conservation for community resilience, healing and peace, gender and climate, and safe foods and diverse diets.
  • Sri Lanka: Kaveri Kala Manram (KKM) is a community empowerment organization actively involved in protecting and promoting traditional arts and culture, and using these to foster creation care and social and environmental justice in the community, in the name of Jesus Christ.
  • Taiwan: City to City has held preaching camps focused on creation care, and recently translated into Mandarin and published A Place at the Table, with plans currently underway to translate Kingfisher’s Fire. They hope to bring creation care theology into the core of their ‘Gospel. City. Movement.’ strategy to influence mainstream Taiwanese church culture.
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