Miranda Harris, co-founder of A Rocha, describes at the
ARI Forum what conservation and hope means to her.

Rick Faw (Interim President) and John Diack (board member) traveled to Portugal June 2-8 to represent Canada at the A Rocha Leaders Forum.  This event happens every 3 years, and this edition brought together 72 leaders from 20 countries for a week of joyful connection, reflection on the past, and planning for the future.

The theme of the week was Generosity.  Together the leaders were reminded that all of A Rocha’s work is a response to God’s own generosity.  We work to protect wonderful habitats and fascinating species in the first place because God created them, loves them, and calls us into relationship with them, and him, as an act of generous grace.

The work of A Rocha around the world – conservation, environmental education, research, church engagement, environmental advocacy, bridging denominational divides, integrating with the Arts  – all of it is motivated by the hope and wonder of witnessing God’s marvelous generosity, and wanting to participate in kind.

Some global family highlights:

      • Dr Bob Sluka, A Rocha International’s Lead Marine Scientist, is doing exciting and important work on ocean microplastics. Please pray for increased attention, resources and coordination on this significant global issue.

     

      • For the past 10 years A Rocha in Portugal has been involved in legal advocacy to protect the Alvor estuary from the pressures of tourism and real estate development. A Rocha has won 7 out of 7 cases to date, but the other side continues to find new and creative ways to overturn these previous rulings, while also lobbying for boundary changes that would render the most delicate and valuable portions of the wetland exempt from protections.  Please pray for continued perseverance, wisdom and grace for the team involved.

     

      • The Atewa Forest Reserve in Ghana provides water to over 5 million people in the capital city of Accra. But the forest is currently the target of a $15 billion bid from China to develop a bauxite mine.  The forest is an ecosystem that supports agriculture, businesses and thousands of households and A Rocha Ghana is driving the campaign to designate it as a national park.  They have presented sustainable forest use and green development options that would guarantee the continuous availability of the water supply, protect biodiversity, create jobs and enhance local livelihoods in the medium to long term.  They’ve even documented the presence of the critically endangered White-naped Mangabey (Cercocebus lunulatus) in the forest. Please pray for public momentum and for good connection with key government leaders.