Skip to main content
All Posts By

Ana Paula Mendes

BJF heroes: Floris and Natascha Wouterson

By News Home

Once again the support we receive from our loyal army of partners, donors and friends is inspiring! This month we want to put the spotlight on Floris and Natascha Wouterson who have been with us since the start of our journey. On top of being committed sponsors themselves, they have also been planting fundraising seeds for us for many years now, spreading the story and the mission of the Black Jaguar Foundation far and wide. Thanks to these efforts the BJF now has an amazing community of German sponsors, to whom we also would like to thank for coming on this exciting journey with us! 

As the owners of Sleepwise, Floris and Natascha have their own mission, to help people sleep better. Since the success of their two stores, Floris has delved further into the world of sleep, becoming the first sleep performance coach in Europe. In this role he provides, coaching and techniques on how to maximise your sleep and has now published the book, ‘Super Sleeper’, containing everything you need to know to rest well. Helping the world one nights sleep at a time. 

After learning of our project in 2012, there was no hesitation, they would support us. The Wouterson family are true believers in what we are trying to achieve, in a recent update meeting Floris said ‘we are a team, I am just one small part’, a mentality we share! With each team member, sponsor, partner playing their respective role, we are capable of truly changing our planets prognosis. 

Thank you Floris and Natascha for all your energy, your inspiring drive and your dedication!

Watch their video testimonial to discover why they support the BJF!

Jaguar Auction 2019: Place your bid!

By News Home

The “BJF Araguaia Guardian”, developed by the artists Ivan Nisida and Andréa Tolaini for the Jaguar Parade 2019, is a poetic portrait of all the lives impacted by this Corridor. Watch our video and learn more about the creative process behind the “Araguaia Guardian”,
A “BJF Guardiã do Araguaia”, desenvolvida pelos artistas Ivan Nisida e Andréa Tolaini, é um retrato poético de todas as vidas impactadas por esse Corredor. Essa obra faz parte da Jaguar Parade 2019 – Saiba mais sobre o processo criativo da “Guardiã do Araguaia” assistindo o vídeo.

Thank you for your interest in participating in the auction for the artwork, “Araguaia Guardian”, by the Black Jaguar Foundation.
Obrigado(a) pelo seu interesse em participar do leilão da obra “Guardiã do Araguaia” da Black Jaguar Foundation.

The auction will take place on 29th November in São Paulo. However, those who are unable to attend may bid online – we will send a link for this 3 days prior to the event. By completing this form you are not listing an official bid, only your intention and your interest in receiving this online link.
A intenção por trás deste formulário é listar potenciais compradores da “Guardiã do Araguaia” para apoiar a missão da BJF. A simples resposta a este formulário não implica um lance oficial. Você não precisa estar presente no leilão oficial para fazer sua aposta. 3 dias antes do evento nós enviaremos um link para que você participe do leilão virtualmente.

Address/Local: Hotel Unique – Av. Brigadeiro Luís Antônio, 4700 – Jardim Paulista, São Paulo – SP, 01402-002
Date/Data: November 29th, 2019 – 7pm/ 29 de Novembro de 2019 – 19h

The BJF makes environmental education a priority

By News Home

Our project has developed only by building strong relationship with local communities, which has recently been extended through the engagement with local schools and universities.

This month, one of our forest engineers, Carlos Eduardo, visited a school in the Araguaia corridor region to teach about the intrinsic value of nature and the reasons why we must all protect our planet’s biodiversity!

This is part of a new initiative with the Secretary of Environment, Fisheries and Tourism of Marianópolis do Tocantins to promote social and environmental sustainability in the region. The BJF is extremely happy to be part of this vital work, sharing our knowledge about restoration with the next generation and in turn gaining more of an understanding about the needs of these communities.

The BJF also received students from the University of Goiás to learn about the restoration process and experience the life of a forest engineer, first hand from our BJF Field Coordinator.

Maria Paula Ataídes, Forest Engineering student and member of the Cerrado Fruit Study Group at the Federal University of Goiás.

Ana Carolina Alves Serafim, Forest Engineering student and member of the Cerrado Fruit Study Group at the Federal University of Goiás.

During the field, they followed various activities under the supervision of Field Coordinator Carlos Eduardo Batista de Oliveira: collecting and processing forest seeds, the production of forest seedlings in the nursery, monitoring the areas planted in 2018 and looking at the next steps and the new areas where restoration will be implemented. Here’s what they said about their experience:

I returned even more with the certainty that Forest Engineering is the wonderful profession I want to pursue, and the certainty that the BJF Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor project is one of the most beautiful actions in terms of the environment and ecological restoration’ – Maria Paula Ataídes.

It was a week of hard learning and hard work, but nothing compares to the feeling of witnessing how restoration happens.’ – Ana Carolina Alves Serafim

Meet Elyakin and Phablo!

By News Home

Meet Elyakin and Phablo, our newest team members! As local environmental engineers, Elaykin and Phablo will play a crucial role in the next stages of our project, helping to communicate our mission and create new partnerships with landowners along the Araguaia corridor.

Elyakin and Phablo are both local to the region and have extensive histories in farming! This intimate knowledge of the area, the people and the industry makes Elyakin and Phablo perfectly placed to articulate to landowners the merits of committing to our biodiversity project and allowing us to restore their lands to the rich, diverse areas they once were! 

We see our partnerships with landowners as a win-win! Not only is it in keeping with Brazilian law, but our work will leave landowners with richer soil quality and an increased water supply, as well as increasing the sustainability of their farms and gaining them CO2 credits in the process. Not to mention the pride and recognition associated with helping to preserve our planet! 

This project necessitates a huge community of partners and so we are extremely excited to have Elyakin and Phablo on board, helping us to increase our reach and achieve the next concrete goal – 1 million trees! 

As the owner of his own environmental consultancy company, Licenciar, Elyakin has a wealth of knowledge and experience surrounding the restoration of this specific environment. Furthermore, being acutely aware of the needs of communities within the Araguaia corridor will ensure that as we move forward, we continue to do so in partnership with these local stakeholders.

How does restoration work? Method 1: planting seedlings

By News Home

The planting of seedlings is crucial, especially when natural regeneration is not able to express itself. The process required for this is complex, from the careful preparation of the soil, to the control of competing plants, to the planting of species with different functional attributes.

When restoring forests, fast-growing trees are planted first. These have the task of re-building the structure and changing the microclimate and soil conditions, making way for the diversity species.

Fast-growing trees must have certain attributes, such as a dense crown, strong roots and an association with beneficial micro-organisms that will help maintain the plants and richness of the soil. Diversity species are longer living and will be part of the future structure when the forest matures. In Savannas, there is no division between fast-growing and diversity. Instead, trees, bushes and grasses are planted all at once to rebuild structure and biodiversity.

This technique requires constant maintenance and monitoring, but it will successfully restore the biodiversity of a given site. 

The BJF talks impact at the Brazil-Germany symposium

By News Home

Last month, the BJF team travelled to Germany to speak at the Brazil-Germany symposium on Sustainable Development. The symposium focused on understanding the complex relationship between human and natural components and their integration into systems for sustainable development in Brazil and Germany.

Invited by our Global Advisory Board Member for the Green Capital Study, Dr. Jörn Germer, we were honoured to present our work, discussing our large scale ecosystem restoration and the realisation of the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor in the heart of Brazil. 

The symposium hosted a unique gathering of keynote speakers and scientists from science, politics, economy and society, all discussing current environmental issues. This diverse range of participants allowed for an engaging and innovative exchange of ideas and experiences. 

Beyond the inspiring discussions the event also provided new networking opportunities and the chance to solidify bonds with existing supporters! 

New partner alert: Welight

By News Home

The BJF is extremely happy to become one of the first organizations in Europe to partner with emerging social business- Welight.

Welight is making giving both simple and transparent. They firstly offer blockchain technology solutions, which allows individuals and companies to track the results of their donations through the Welight platform.This ensures legitimacy in an organization’s management of funds. Cash flow is tracked and partner charities like BJF register results using a decentralized, immutable and auditable transparency system based on blockchain. Secondly, Welight make it possible for consumers to generate donations when buying products and services online and at physical stores. This is at no extra cost to the consumer. Companies and stores that opt into Welight donate a part of the profit generated on each purchase to an organization of their choice.

Welight is an incredibly innovative business model and they have already found success in Brazil, distributing around $R500.000 to social causes so far. They are now emerging into a European market and BJF is one of the first organizations they have approached. We couldn’t be more pleased to cooperate with this platform of the future!

Holistic farming creating change in Brazil

By News Home

The Farm of the Future is an enterprise of Guilherme Tiezzi, one of our partner landowners. He proposes a complete shift in the way agrobusiness relates to natural resources, wanting to create a true social impact in the region. In July, Tiezzi promoted a one-week Holistic Management Course at his property which our forest engineers were able to attend! 

Here, they had the opportunity to learn more about sustainable cattle raising and property management. Our BJF Brazil team also had the opportunity to present their work and show attendees the preparation of our Restoration Demonstration Unit, which will be taking place in the Farm of the Future. This was an amazing learning experience for us, and a great opportunity to inform more people about the crucial work the BJF is doing!

Jaguar Parade 2019!

By News Home

In September of 2019, artists Ivan Nisida and Andrea Tolaini painted one of the 90 Jaguar statues that took part in the Jaguar Parade. This work of art was displayed in public areas around São Paulo to raise awareness about the immediate need for conservation and restoration efforts in Brazil and worldwide! 

Our Jaguar has been inspired by the BJF mission to restore the biodiversity of the Araguaia region. This beautiful piece of art was then auctioned on the 29th November – with the proceeds going to help the BJF progress in our crucial work!

Our Araguaia Guardian is now in a second exhibition phase and will be on display in the Vieira Rezende offices until 31st March, 2020.

The Jaguar parade, like the BJF, is motivated by the impact that increasing environmental degradation has had in recent years! The parade invites organisations and companies to take part in this important event, not only to raise money for their respective causes but also to raise awareness about the rapidly decreasing biodiversity occurring in Brazil and around the world! 

According to IBAMA, in Brazil, the Jaguar is considered extremely vulnerable and falls under the category ‘almost threatened’ by extinction. This declining population is largely a result of deforestation, poaching and pollution, making projects, such as our regeneration of the Araguaia corridor, extremely vital to these efforts to bring back native animals and plants! 

Thank you to our Brazilian sponsor and the Jaguar Parade for allowing us the opportunity to be involved in this event!

Meet More Amazing Donors: Hadassa and Tomas

By News Home

This month, two of our amazing donors completed the bridge to bridge run in Arnhem, Netherlands, in aid of the BJF! Both dedicated supporters, this is one of many ways Hadassa and Tomas have contributed to the BJF!

As a Biologist from Brasília, Hadassa is passionate about the potential for our project to help restore the ecosystems of the Cerrado Savanna and Amazon and bring back water security to these areas!

When in balance, the earth’s ecosystems provide mankind with suitable living conditions such as clean air, fresh water and soil. In many cases these conditions provided by nature are taken for granted. For instance, the value of clean air and drinking water might not be taken into account as important factors when developing our societies and economies. In such cases, decisions are made leaving natural systems out of consideration.

In order to make the benefits that we receive from ecosystems measurable and link them with human activities, the concept of Ecosystem Services was developed. Ecosystem Services is a concept where natural services are given economic value/worth in order to bring these services into consideration when making decisions. Ecosystems services include for example, provision of food and raw materials, nutrient recycling and soil formation.

Naturally, water is also one important service provided by ecosystems. Ecosystems provide fresh water that is directly consumable by living beings. That is of course, of extreme importance for us as well, especially when considering that most of the water on our planet is sea water. Other water related ecosystem services are climate regulation, through humidity and temperature control amongst other things, and the provision of fish stocks.

Water related ecosystems services are not only linked to aquatic ecosystems but also to terrestrial ecosystems. For example, vegetation plays a key role in water retention and groundwater recharge, two important aspects of the water cycle. From this perspective, restoration projects, such as the Araguaia Corridor project, do not only contribute to increase/maintain terrestrial ecosystems services such as biodiversity and carbon sequestration, but also contribute – and are essential – to water related ecosystems services.

By Hadassa Moreira and Simon Holsteijn, IMD