Established in 2001, the Land Conservation Organization (OCT) focuses on the conservation and promotion of biodiversity and natural resources. Based in the Southern Bahia Lowlands, in the municipality of Ibirapitanga, OCT is a Civil Society Organization which operates with a focus on planning rural landscapes.
Elected the best environmental NGO in Brazil in 2019 by Instituto Doar, OCT is our partner in promoting sustainable territorial development. The institution has accumulated a portfolio of experiences and knowledge, to generate and value environmental services, also conciliating the conservation of water resources, flora and fauna, with quality of life and well-being for the population.
With 12 operational areas, OCT works with activities, such as technical assistance for family farmers in planning actions, and regularizing their properties with reforestation actions; the development of agroforestry systems; adaptability of productive gardens with the installation of septic tanks; the establishment of agroecological practices, and support for participative organic certification.
In the Southern Bahia Lowlands, OCT also coordinates the Papuã Center, where their offices are located. The result of a partnership forged by us in 2008 with the UN, the center is a space to exchange knowledge and learning, and to disseminate experiences and innovation in socioeconomic and environmental technologies.
Located at 680 meter altitude in Serra da Papuã, in the municipality of Ibirapitanga, and within the Pratigi Environmental Protection Area (APA), its infrastructure is prepared to receive visitors throughout the year and includes rooms, an auditorium for up to 80 people, a learning space, research center, restaurant, and three bungalows with the capacity for up to 52 guests.
Isidório Gonçalves, a family farmer who has benefited from OCT, smiles and leans on a tree trunk that is more than four meters in height. He proudly says: “I planted it.” He points to another five or six nearby trees and, with the same smile, says that he is passionate about seeing these saplings grow. Gonçalves lives with his wife, Cristina Magalhães, and two children, Talita and Ricardo Gonçalves, in the municipality of Ibirapitanga. He makes his livelihood from farming: he grows a variety of products such as cocoa, latex, cloves, jabuticaba, lemons and mangos. He farms fish and raises chickens and, added to all of this, also contributes towards environmental conservation. “I have been planting trees on my property for more than 20 years. I believe that we have to compensate for what we have taken from nature,” he reflects.