A Rocha is a Christian conservation organization whose name means “The Rock” in Portuguese. Initially begun as a field study center in Portugal, A Rocha now has teams working in fifteen countries (Canada, United States of America [USA], Peru, the United Kingdom [UK], Portugal, France, Netherlands, Finland, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Lebanon, Ghana, South Africa, Kenya, and India), each sharing a community emphasis and focusing on science and research, practical conservation, and environmental education. A Rocha is currently working to protect the Aammiq Wetland in south Lebanon, the Arabuko-Sokoke Forest in eastern Kenya, an urban site in southern England, the Little Campbell River watershed in western Canada, and the Alvor Estuary in southern Portugal. A Rocha runs an array of environmental education programs (e.g., day camps for children in downtown Vancouver and residential summer camps for teenagers in the Czech Republic) that aim to help people appreciate the beauty and fragility of the natural world
One of A Rocha's priorities is to develop and maintain relationships of quality and depth that reflect God's relationship with creation. The first A Rocha Center grew into an extended family, including team members, people living locally, and visitors. Twenty years later, this Center continues to grow and flourish. As other projects become established in various locations, new models of community emerge—not necessarily with shared living quarters but always expressing a deep level of personal commitment between members.
|Duration of Project||1983–Present|
A Rocha held its first meeting near Liverpool, England in 1983 and is registered as a chairty in England (No. 288634). The first project established a field study center in 1986 near the Alvor estuary in Algarve, Portuga. National organizations were established in Lebanon, France, Kenya, the United Kingdom (UK), and Canada by 1999. A Rocha International was created in 2000 to increase the capacity and effectiveness of the existing organizations, to foster the development of new organizations in other parts of the world, and to raise awareness, understanding, and support on a global level. A Rocha International currently responds to approaches from Christian groups that wish to join the organization. Membership considerations include: the geographical location of the group and its complementarity with existing projects; reponse to the proposal process; the potential for the organiztion to become self-sustaining; and the continuing level of initative taken locally.
|Mission Statement||“A Rocha is an international conservation organization working to show God’s love for all creation.”|
A Rocha is a member of The World Conservation Union (IUCN).
Other partners include:
A Rocha's national organizations enter into a wide variety of partnerships.
|Long-Term Goals||A Rocha aims to establish broad geographical coverage.|
|Bibliography||Harris, Peter. Under the Bright Wings. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada: Regent College Publishing, 1993, 2000.|
|Additional Research Resources||None Listed|
|Contact Information||A Rocha International
3 Hooper Street
Cambridge CB1 2NZ