Chair person: Michael Lofstrom
Co-Chair: Carmen Vidal-Hallett

International Business Sustainable Practices

IL-SP PARTNERS, SÃO PAULO (Botucatu and Ilhabela)


The International Business Sustainable Practices (IBSP) project builds upon several workshops in Brazil carried out over the past two years for beneficiaries which include: 1) students (SENAC community college, UNESP Botucatú, and UIUC — Univ. of Illinois Urbana/Champaign); 2) instructors from university and community college natural resources and sustainability programs in Botucatú, and more recently the Ilhabela UNIB community college; and, 3) Brazilian entrepreneurs (e.g. young people and youth volunteers). A Travel Grant awarded to SP-IL Partners project leader and board member, Mike Lofstrom, helped establish additional institutional linkages (USP Piracicaba ESALQ students; SENAC students and faculty in Botucatú, UNIBR in Ilhabela, and Cultural and Educational programs in this area promoted by the State of São Paulo and the UIUC – Champaign/Urbana).

International Business Sustainable Practices

Under this Travel Grant and with support from an Education & Culture program Small Grant, a new workshop on sustainable practices (recycling and composting methods) was carried out in Botucatú on November 29th, 2014. These grants were essential to maintaining project momentum through newly designed workshops for commercial and agricultural sustainability, and the potential for direct educational and employment benefits for greater numbers of both Brazilian and US young entrepreneurs, students and faculty.

International Business Sustainable Practices

The IBSP project has identified and provided educational opportunities for Brazilian industrial/agriculture entrepreneurs and students/professors in sustainable conservation practices, for the primary purpose of small business development and conservation. (Starting with the visit by IL-SP Board member M. Lofstrom to Botucatú and Mococa in May, 2012, and the visit to Illinois and UIUC by Brazilian students — 2 students, and 1 professor — Sadir da Silva Junior – in July, 2012), and president Ciro Croce to Chicago and UIUC last October. These visits resulted in small industry and university connections in both states, and a plan to follow up in 2015/16 that began with the participation of the UIUC students (ACES 298, Study Abroad program) and two instructors who visited Botucatú, Mococa FAF and Ilhabela, during this past May, 2015.

Fruit Tree Planting in Brazil 2013

3 a new project was implemented with the planting and distribution of more than 5,000 fruit trees. Partners of the Americas participated again and Carmen Vidal-Hallett traveled representing POA and helping in the educational aspects and as a liaison between the American organizations involved and the people and schools  in Mococa.

Fruit Tree Planting in Brazil 2009

This committee has focused more recently on a very rewarding project, the educational “Sustainable Life Gardens” in Chicago Illinois, Mococa and Botucatu in Sao Paulo and even reaching to other chapters such as the sustainable life gardens in Itaparica, Bahia, Brazil.

Planting Trees

In Chicago, the project took place at Interamerican Magnet School (IAMS). After implementation the project was the recipient of the Region 2 second place award of the 2008 Mayor Daley Landscaping award. This educational project included a sustainable master plan based on the 5th grade curriculum and included a “chinampa” (vegetable garden inspired in the Aztec culture), a rain garden with  Illinois native perennial  plants and an orchard with more than 30  perennial fruit trees. Founders for this project include Illinois POA, The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation, The Chicago Cubs, The Organic School Project, the McCormick Foundation and FELE (IAMS Familias En La Escuela). For a slide show of the tree planting, click here.

Awards with the Mayor

Enviro-Agro Technology Transfer Project Summary (2002 – 2007), Illinois – Sao Paulo Partners

Who benefited and how from the Enviro-Agro Technology Transfer Project?

Approximately 75-100 rural-based teachers, instructors and monitors in the state of Sao Paulo benefitted from microenterprise skills, materials and technical applications. These participants in turn helped educate and develop applied skills for approximately 2,000 rural students and other young entrepreneurs within the targeted 4-5 Agricultural Schools (i.e. identified under the Enviro/Agro Technology Transfer program) and corresponding nearby producer associations in Botucatu’, Santa Cruz do Rio Pardo and Mococa. This project helped to increase personal and family incomes and create significant job opportunities for low-income and/or unemployed rural workers. The Micro-enterprise Environmental workshop(s) and on-site activities carried out in 2006 and 2007 had a cash contribution of $2,000, in addition to the Illinois Chapter’s counterpart support of $1,000 and a previous POA Laschober Grant of $1,000. Small Project Grants were also received from POA Washington tototalling more than $2500 (from 2002 to 2005). The overall activity counted on local in-kind support from the Instituto Floravida for workshops and educational purposes, and the UNESP Botucatú university for technical support, folow-up material, as well as additional in-kind support from Western Illinois University and the Mococa Fazenda Ambiental Fortaleza. This in-kind support was estimated at $18,000 over the period of 2006 and 2007.