Established in 2007, the Igrapiúna Rural Family House (CFR-I) offers young people aged between 14 and 19 a high school education integrated with an agribusiness technical course, approved by the Ministry of Education.
Located in Igrapiúna, in the Southern Bahia Lowlands, CFR-I is established as a Civil Society Organization, and is also recognized by the Ministry of Justice as a Civil Society Organization of Public Interest.
A member of the UNESCO Associated Schools Network, CFR-I`s priority focus is young people who have completed their basic education, are the sons and daughters of family farmers, resident in the rural zone of the Southern Lowlands, and have the vocation to continue living, and being entrepreneurs in the countryside.
Aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) proposed by the UN, CFR-I operates under the rotation education model, in which the students enrolled spend one week as boarders, with practical and theoretical classes at the school. In the following two weeks, the young people stay on their properties, putting what they have learned into practice, and sharing this knowledge with their families and communities.
At the CFR-I facilities, the students also have a processing unit, a space that may be used by students, families, and the communities, to process the fruit they have grown on their rural properties. There is also equipment to produce handmade chocolate, and a multifunctional kitchen with a stove, tables, refrigerators, fruit dehydrator and packing machines, which enables them to produce items such as jams.
José Marcos Santos has a broad smile. On the property where he lives with his father, Josenilton Santos, located on the top of a hill in the municipality of Igrapiúna, in the Southern Bahia Lowlands, the student has been developing as a farmer. “We grow a lot of things here. We have a little of everything” he says, listing the cocoa, banana, bitter cassava and clove crops. Under his father`s watchful eye, with a mixture of pride and admiration, José Marcos makes it clear that, for him, it is not enough to keep what he has learned to himself. “I like sharing my knowledge with my neighbors. I always show them new fertilization techniques,” the student exemplifies.