The A Rocha Blog

Prior to joining A Rocha, Chris had wide experience of science teaching and schools’ management in the UK and the Middle East, attending Bible College and learning Arabic (in Jordan) along the way. He joined A Rocha in 1997 working, until 2009, as Lebanon Director where he cofounded the work. He oversaw the habitat restoration programme at the Aammiq Wetland, the development of the environmental education project and the field research programme, identifying 11 new Important Bird Areas. Since April 2010 he has been Executive Director of A Rocha International and is based in Oxfordshire. His book Postcards from the Middle East: How our family fell in love with the Arab world was published by Lion Hudson in March 2015.

31st May 2015 | Chris Naylor | 0 comments

Postcards from the Middle East by Chris Naylor: 4. Visitors drop a bombshell

“You are breaking the mould. Abu Charbel, like many others, thinks the church should keep to traditional areas of work.” “But what about priorities?” I pressed. “What is the most important thing? Preaching, poverty relief, or conservation of rare species?”

Categories: Postcards
30th April 2015 | Chris Naylor | 2 comments

Postcards from the Middle East by Chris Naylor: 3. Mission impossible

It was a transformed class that reconvened under the shade of the ash tree a couple of hours later. It was like conducting an orchestra to establish the learning objectives of the lesson; the wetland provided invaluable services to the human communities of the Bekaa, it contained rare and beautiful species and it needed protection. We didn’t stop there; questions tumbled from the class all the way back to the bus.

Categories: Postcards
15th April 2015 | Stanley Baya | 4 comments

Postcard from Kenya

Kenya has been in the news this month because of the massacre at Garissa University. Supporters have been asking about any impact here on the coast, where A Rocha has its field study centre, Mwamba. We feel perfectly safe here and are keen to welcome visitors.

Categories: News
31st March 2015 | Chris Naylor | 2 comments

Postcards from the Middle East by Chris Naylor: 2. Bedouin hospitality

The tent was dark but warm inside, a simple wood stove providing a flickering light. The bitter, piping-hot coffee was in an elaborate brass pot. Most of the year they lived in Homs in Syria but each spring, and sometimes in the autumn, they would get the tent out of storage and make the trek to the Bekaa for extra work.

Categories: Postcards
15th March 2015 | Peter Harris | 2 comments

Postcard from St Helena

St Helena is a sobering place to ecological eyes. In the early 17th century the Portuguese landed goats and in a hundred years they had reduced huge areas of lush landscape to bare rock. In the centuries that followed, we have made the world itself an island where the goats of hyper-individualism, corporate greed and short-term political ambition are roaming more or less unchecked.

Categories: Postcards
15th January 2015 | Tom Rowley | 1 comments

Hopey New Year

The “reality” of the situation is grim. But, like a figure-ground image, what we first see isn’t all there is. Viewed with human eyes, the challenges facing the planet look insurmountable. The eyes of faith, however, see a different picture; they see more.

Categories: Reflections