Monday, July 22, 2013 - 15:54

Camargo Corrêa Institute’s projects help increase the income of families at Vale do Ribeira

Camargo Corrêa Institute (ICC) presents, on July 23, the results of two projects that contributed for the sustainable development of regions under social vulnerability in the Vale da Paraíba region, state of São Paulo. Through the work of ICC, the communities that participate in the Semeando Futuros and Futuro em Nossas Mãos projects were able to increase their family income, qualify their productions and expand their activities.

The Semeando Futuros project, conducted in partnership with InterCement, the cement holding of Camargo Corrêa Group, Instituto Meio and BNDES, involved 42 families from the Association of Small Rural Producers of the Garcias Community (APPRBG) from the municipality of Apiaí, and offered technical qualification on organic farming techniques, support to the purchase of inputs, as well as irrigation systems for crops and constant follow-up by an agronomist during the entire learning process of agricultural workers.

Many small producers had the culture of planting and selling just tomatoes and vegetables, due to the cold weather of the region. With the arrival of the Semeando Futuros project, the organic strawberry was the big articulator to increase the trade of the produce on local commerce, with investments in irrigation processes and temperature control. The actions helped strengthen sustainable agriculture, improve productivity , and add value to the products that come with organic certification. The total family income went from 600 reais to 1500, a 217% increase.

Now Futuro em Nossas Mãos Cerâmica Artesanal do Alto Vale do Ribeira project is paired with ICC, Instituto do Meio, BNDES and the local administrations of Itaoca, Apiaí and Barra do Chapéu. The over 56 artisans received investments in community production centers, technical and managerial qualification and publicity of the region as an important center of handicraft ceramics production, in addition to the renovation of Casa do Artesão, a local tourist attraction.

In the first 12 months of the project, the income of artisans increased by nearly 300%. Four community production units were installed, with more efficient and eco-friendly furnaces, and marombas that eliminate the manual labor of preparing clay. The production time per unit dropped 50%. The region, already traditionally known by handicraft, got stronger and became a reference.