Start an A Rocha Associated Project

A Rocha is an international family of Christian conservation organizations working to show God’s love for all creation through scientific research, conservation projects and environmental and theological education. Local contexts are all different, but A Rocha is able to be  a network of like-minded, self-run initiatives operating in a wide variety of countries, sharing knowledge and experience. If you are involved in creation care with others, you might wonder if you could connect to A Rocha.

What distinguishes a new A Rocha project?

There are many wonderful conservation projects around the world. All A Rocha projects share these particular characteristics. 

  • They enable a community to engage in practical action
  • At least one of the project’s objectives is biodiversity conservation
  • A person with professional scientific/conservation experience is among the key people actively involved
  • For new projects, there is a plan to resource the first year of the project fully (A Rocha may offer advice, but is not able to offer funding), and there is IT support for running necessary systems
  • The objectives reflect a Christian approach, as expressed in the first of A Rocha’s five core commitments and ethos [LINK], and are aligned with A Rocha’s current operational plan
  • The project has the support of at least three national Christian leaders.

New projects might also fit well with the existing network of A Rocha organizations, and the key people involved are widely known for their relevant experience and integrity.

What do you mean by ‘biodiversity conservation’
for setting up a new A Rocha project?

A Rocha’s conservation programmes usually involve four stages:

  • Baseline biodiversity surveys of specific sites, with assessment of priorities and threats
  • Research and monitoring of species and habitats based on the above analysis
  • Producing and implementing management plans for the conservation of these ecosystems, their species and genetic diversity
  • Communicating the results of these activities at all appropriate levels (local stakeholders, scientific community and decision-makers) to encourage their application

How do new A Rocha projects come into being?

  1. The big idea. A person or a group of people encounter A Rocha in some way. They begin to consider the idea of a project with A Rocha aims in their country.
  2. Talking about the big idea. As they talk to other people, it seems a good idea. They decide to contact us at A Rocha International. Depending on the idea, they may be encouraged to take it further with A Rocha or they may decide to look elsewhere. 
  3. Forming an official group. If good for both to proceed, there is an application process to ensure there is a good fit, good support, and clear expectations about what the project can expect from A Rocha International, and what A Rocha expects of its associated projects. Full guidelines are available to support this process.

Examples of activities at this stage:

  • Organization of a conference: to discuss project ideas, identify potential team/board members and introduce more people to A Rocha. We may be able to send someone to be a conference speaker and meet with the group.
  • Practical activities: the focus of A Rocha organizations is always around our core work of community-based practical conservation of habitats and species.

It is wonderful when a project successfully develops a formal association with A Rocha. 

Read an introduction to some A Rocha Associated Projects

Read more about the national A Rocha organisations where we work

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Dave Bookless

Director of Churches and Theology

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