By: Hannah Gillespie
“People find their way to A Rocha and are excited to discover a story of Christians caring for creation,” starts Jenna Henderson, A Rocha USA’s Director of National Programs. “They want to get connected, but our country is huge. If you don’t live near a conservation project, it’s been a challenge to get involved.”
This challenge also presents an opportunity. Creation care needs to be done, and can be done, everywhere. There are ways, both small and large, that people can practice conservation wherever they happen to live.
History of Love Your Place
Think of “place” as your little part of the created world, with its own interconnected local ecosystems along with human (and non-human) communities. The first step for anyone to take care of God’s creation is to pay attention to their actual physical place. “Love Your Place” summarizes the idea that caring for creation is something everyone can do.
The name “Love Your Place” emerged from A Rocha USA’s work in Nashville, Tennessee, where we helped people take conservation action, starting at home. Participants plant pollinator gardens, learn about native bees and other pollinators, practice waste reduction and composting, and more.
The Love Your Place program was initially launched by A Rocha USA in 2019, a few months before the COVID-19 pandemic. Love Your Place provided online resources to connect, educate, and inspire members on their creation care journey, while at the same time supporting A Rocha USA’s work with a monthly donation. Self-paced courses and webinars covered topics like climate, habitat, and plastics. Woven throughout the content were also theological resources, and suggestions for spiritual practices to connect care for creation to Christian faith and hope.
Over time, Love Your Place members identified two ways to improve the program: make it easier for members to connect with each other and remove the paywall. Both were accomplished through a shift to a new online platform. “The new online space is more like a private Facebook group,” explains Jenna, with spaces for conversations by topic or location, and online courses and invitations to join local or national events and actions.
You are welcome in the Love Your Place community!
The work of caring for God’s creation extends to everyone. Our new Love Your Place online community is a great way to connect to others who love the mission of A Rocha and want to care for God’s creation together.
When you join, you can meet other friends of A Rocha all over the continent who want to creatively love and care for their part of the world. You’ll also find:
- A New Members Course where you can introduce yourself and meet others.
- A Rocha-hosted virtual events, like Monthly Church Meet-ups (hosted by A Rocha Canada) and A Rocha’s upcoming virtual 40th birthday party.
- Local groups to make local connections and take action together (currently in five states including A Rocha USA project locations, Texas and Florida).
- Community-wide initiatives like summer book club (starting July 21st) and other shared, meaningful actions to enhance biodiversity where you live.
- A place for church engagement. Theological resources and conversations in the Church Engagement space – just ask to join.
We hope you’ll join Love Your Place and get inspired by the hopeful work of A Rocha and others in this dynamic community.
What the Love Your Place community is saying
“I’m a long-time A Rocha supporter and love connecting with other followers of Christ with a passion for earthkeeping.” -Angela Kantola
“I am excited to connect with other followers of Jesus who believe in the importance of creation care, and to find and share new ideas about how to do that!” – Irish Noble