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Ana Paula Mendes

Environmental education: acting sustainably on a daily basis

By CAIXA, News Home

Earlier this month, we conducted an environmental education activity at the Escola Municipal de Ensino Fundamental Professor José Ribamar, in Santana do Araguaia.

Our field coordinator, Carlos Eduardo Batista, showed elementary school students how to act more sustainably on a daily basis, and introduced them to the Black Jaguar Foundation’s mission.

An introduction to ecological restoration

The event started with an introduction activity, where the children passed around a native seedling as they told each other their names, age, and favorite tree. Students were told to take care of the seedling, as they would plant it later on.

When asked about the BJF’s mission, many of the students responded that they thought the BJF protected Jaguars or took care of other animals. As Carlos explained, it is much bigger than that. The project has a more direct link to each of the children’s lives. The BJF aims to ecologically restore the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor, surrounding the Araguaia River. The river is the main water course in the region, and pertinent to the livelihoods of the community.

After recognizing the importance of preserving our ecosystems, Carlos presented on how to live more sustainably. Some of the ideas he mentioned were: encouraging their families to separate the garbage at home, using reusable cups, reducing the use of plastic, among others.

Finally, a workshop was held on how to plant a tree in a backyard or on a farm!

The process was very participatory and dynamic – see some of the photos below:

Meet our new partner: LA PACHAMAMA

By Allgemein, CAIXA, News Home

Like the Black Jaguar Foundation, LA PACHAMAMA believes nature and humankind depend on each other, and aims to restore a balance between the two.  

That is why we are so excited to present them as our latest partner! LA PACHAMAMA creates beautiful sarongs, wraps, and accessories that contribute to a positive, lasting impact for future generations. Their materials are all plant based, biodegradable, and are made in a Fairtrade factory in India. 

With every purchase of their Black Jaguar print Sarongs/Wraps or Kimonos, a donation is made to The Black Jaguar Foundation. So far, 29 trees have been donated! Enter the code BLACKJAGUAR to get 20% off your purchase! 

Find out more about LA PACHAMAMA on their website!

Donate a Tree for Easter

By Allgemein

Have you ever heard of easter trees?

It’s a very simple concept. Instead of (or as well as) buying eggs made of chocolate this Easter, you give the gift a new native tree. With this native tree you’ll be restoring our most vital ecosystems, bringing back biodiversity and helping to preserve our planet for future generations.

Bring more life and hope this Easter, all it takes is one tree.

Tree Planting Season 2020-2021

By News Home

WITNESS STAGE ONE OF OUR FIRST  MILLION TREES AND MEET THE TEAM MAKING IT HAPPEN!

When you donate a tree, you choose to make a difference for the future of our planet and for the communities living along the Araguaia river. But when you’re so far away from the tree planting action, it can be hard to visualise this impact.

We want to bring you to the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor and show you the impact your donations are having. It’s time for you to meet the people planting your trees and see the planting in action!

By now you’ve probably been introduced to some of our team but we’re growing and this planting season our team in the field grew to 36 local tree planters! Thanks to our dedicated local team, our amazing partner landowners and you, our community, 80,000 trees are being planted this season. These 80,000 trees are part of our first million trees which are being planted with the incredible support of Movida and One Tree Planted.

Now let’s meet the team and take a look at the amazing planting progress.

Part of the Black Jaguar Foundation 2020-2021 Planting Team at Fazenda Cedro.

World Wildlife day 2021

By Allgemein, News Home

Wednesday, 3rd March is World Wildlife day!

Each year World Wildlife day focuses on one theme which is of the utmost importance for the preservation of our planet’s wildlife. This year, the day is being celebrated around the theme of Forests and Livelihoods: Sustaining People and Planet“. 

The aim is to highlight the central role that forests and ecosystem services play in sustaining the livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people globally. In honour of this day, we’re launching billboards across the Netherlands, asking you to support the preservation of our forests and Donate a Tree!

Nature is crucial for each and every person living on earth. However, for local communities and indigenous peoples, their lives and livelihoods and so intertwined with the natural processes that are increasingly threatened as deforestation and biodiversity loss increase. 

It is estimated that between 200 and 350 million people live within or adjacent to forested areas, with roughly 28% of the world’s surface currently being managed by indigenous peoples. (https://www.wildlifeday.org/). Not only do these people rely intimately on the preservation of nature, but that we in turn rely on them to conserve the wildlife that is so essential for human survival. 

This world wildlife day is drawing attention to these communities and the initiatives that are working together with them to create sustainable models of forest conservation, that take into account the livelihoods and well-being of these guardians of the forests.

At the Black Jaguar Foundation, we’re working together with local communities to learn about their needs and requirements for ecological restoration. Taking into account economic return and social impact to create sustainable models of restoration. This means we make a unique plan for each area of land, together with the farmers, to assess how models for agroforestry or sustainable timber systems may work together with the restoration of biodiversity.

The aim is to restore forests that last! By working with local communities these forests become an asset to the community. Not only because of the impact of restored ecosystem services but because of the impact for livelihoods and for the community as a whole. (Find out more from the 2019-2020 Impact study)

You can take action today and help protect our forests and all those who rely on them. Donate a tree! 

Sapa Pana Travel: a sustainable way to see the world

By News Home

Sapa Pana Travel offers bespoke trips to incredible destinations around Latin America. Providing clients with unique experiences to some of our planet’s most beautiful locations. But they also want these opportunities to be possible for future generations. 

Because of this, Sapa Pana Travel is looking to grow and develop in a way that is responsible and respectful to the world in which we live. As part of this, at the start of February, Sapa Pana Travel committed to supporting the Black Jaguar Foundation. Sapa Pana will now be compensating for the ecological impact of their trips but helping us to plant millions of native trees in the heart of Brazil. However, in addition to this, they are dedicated to helping to promote environmentalism and sustainable travel. 

Take a look at Sapa Pana’s latest news blast >>>

On Monday the 8th March, 19.30 (CET), Sapa Pana’s founder Johan van Rijswijck, with be interviewing BJF Founder Ben Valks. They’ll be discussing Ben’s adventures from Alaska, through the Amazon, to Antarctica, and finding out how the Black Jaguar Foundation came to be.  The discussion will also offer listeners the chance to get involved and ask questions so make sure not to miss it. Register here to listen here.

We’re excited to grow, together with Sapa Pana Travel, and help each other to work towards a more sustainable future. Find out more about Sapa Pana travel and our partnership!

60,000 trees planted so far this season!

By News Home

Planting season is almost over but we still have more updates coming your way. These 60,000 trees have been planted at our partner farms in the Santana do Araguaia region and are all part of our first million trees with Movida and One Tree Planted!

To celebrate our monumental partnership with One Tree Planted, Project manager Alaine Ball from OTP visited the project at the start of February to see the restoration sites, and get to know the landowners and the city of Santana do Araguaia. We hope this is just the start of a beautiful partnership working to restore our most vital ecosystems!

During the next planting season, we’ll be completing our first million trees and starting to plant our second million!

Alaine Ball, Project Manager OTP, planting seedling, Feb 2021.

This season, however, has not been without its challenges! It’s been dryer than usual which caused a temporary pause in our planting in December. Luckily our field team is always finding new technologies and ways to adapt, and with the use of a water-retaining polymer, we were able to continue planting. This polymer is added to the soil before planting and means that water stays available in the soil for longer. Thanks to this polymer our planting season has continued and we’ll reach this season’s target of 80,000 trees!

These droughts are a clear sign of our changing climate and another reason why reforestation work is more crucial than ever!

Planting team adding the water-retaining polymer to the soil before planting. Making water available in the soil for longer.

We’re happy to see more awareness around the challenges and hopes for restoration work. With increasingly uncertain weather conditions, we need your support more than ever to have the capacity to continue to adapt and grow!

Read the full article on how droughts are affecting restoration work in Nature Today >>>

Finish Profiles Group goes carbon neutral with the Black Jaguar Foundation

By News Home

Finish Profiles Group is the number 1 supplier of steel roof and wall plates, and it is going carbon neutral by 2030! 

Together with the Hedgehog company, we calculated the company’s carbon emissions up to 2030. In line with the Hedgehog company’s calculations, we will plant 11, 625 trees on behalf of Finish Profile’s Group. Over the course of 26 years, as these trees reach maturity, they will remove 1.7 million kilos of carbon from our atmosphere.

In addition to actively compensating for their carbon emissions, the Finish Profile’s Group is investing in low carbon technologies and increasingly building their business with our planet in mind.

On top of being committed to providing their customers with a quality service, the Finish Profile Group is now committed to helping us work towards a more sustainable future for all. Founder and CEO, Chris van der Vossen, has one question for you, will you join them?

BJF T-shirt now available: the Tee that plants trees 🌱

By News Home

To celebrate the start of the Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, we have something very special for you! We’ve teamed up with local Amsterdam artist Nina Biddle to create a limited edition Black Jaguar Foundation T-shirt!

Not only can you now wear this beautiful, unique design, but with every T-shirt sold we’ll be able to plant 2 trees. T-shirts for you, trees for all!

Adorning the back of this T-shirt you’ll find a set of tree rings. But not just any tree rings, these tree rings have tiny dancing people swirling and twirling within the lines. Tree rings tell us so much about each tree but also about our climate and our planet’s cycles of nature. This T-shirt is an ode to our intertwined relationship with nature and the beauty that can happen when we work with nature, instead of against it. 

We can’t wait to see you all wearing your support for our planet! 

Get your limited edition Tee today >>>

How much does a tree cost?

By News Home

The cost to plant a tree varies depending on multiple factors, primarily the location and type of techniques used. After all, the cost of a tree is much more than simply the price of a seed or seedling!

All of our work is in Brazil and takes place along the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor, and we use a mixture of 5 restoration techniques, which are dependent on the area. We calculate that to complete every stage in the planting process, it will cost us €5 per tree. But what does this actually involve?

Let us tell you!  

Map displaying the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor region.

Community

It all starts with a community, and at the Black Jaguar Foundation we invest a lot in our community. We work in a unique way, we don’t buy land, but instead partner with local farmers who have an environmental deficit. 

What is an environmental deficit I hear you ask? Under Brazilian environmental law, landowners must leave a percentage of their land to allow nature to return. Their environmental deficit is the shortfall of land that must yet be designated for nature, in order for farmers to meet this legal requirement.

So, in our project, farmers are our partners. In this partnership the farmer allows us to reforest their land, in return, they are able to comply with the legal regulations. Both they and the community also benefit from the restored ecosystem services. Such as improved soil quality, restored water supply, natural pest control, and so much more! Crucially, they are also playing an active role in changing the fate of our planet! They are our heroes! 

Environmental education and engagement workshops are also held by our team in the field, however these have had to be suspended to comply with Covid regulations. These teach about the benefits associated with restoring and preserving forests, building on the local knowledge to nurture the growing environmental consciousness in the region. 

Research

Another stage that must happen before we plant is some crucial investigation. We must know what the original ecosystem looked like, as only then can we restore it. This is a crucial part of the process. The wrong trees will fail to bring the biodiversity of the region back. And that’s what it’s all about! At the Black Jaguar Foundation our first task was to extensively map the whole Araguaia corridor area, looking into the prior land use, the soil composition, the existing flora and fauna and much more. Carefully then devising a plan to re-create the ecosystem and restore it to its former glory.

Our research is ongoing and we are constantly learning and adapting our techniques and our approach.

1985

2017

Graphs showing the development of land use in the region, Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor Impact Study 2019-2020.

Planting

Now it’s almost time to plant! First is the small matter of purchasing the seeds, building the nurseries and growing the seeds into healthy strong seedlings! Our team will then get to work preparing the land, this means constructing fences to prevent cattle grazing on the new trees, removing invasive grasses and controlling ant populations. A little fertilizer and then we’re ready to plant! In some sites we plant seedlings and some we sow seeds. In some sites all we need to do is protect the area or boost the diversity of species and nature will do the rest.

5 METHODS

OF RESTORATION

PLANTING SEEDLINGS
DIRECT SEEDING
NATURAL REGENERATION
ENRICHMENT
DENSIFICATION

Monitoring & Maintenence

Your trees are now in the ground, then what? If absolutely everything goes according to plan we’ll continue to monitor the restored forest and check its progress using a range of indicators, but no further interference will be needed. Sometimes however we may need to intervene and help the new forest along to make sure biodiversity is restored. This is why we conduct regular checks for 3 years. With subsequent checks at the 5, 10 and 20-year marks. 

So for just €5 we do all of this! Now that’s good value for money!

Establishing our official monitoring protocol with André Nave, Director of Bioflora, in the field.