Planting the Future

Started: 2012, still ongoing.

Planting the Future (PTF) is a social impact project focused on increasing the living and educational standards of children in Paraguay and Brazil.

This project was started in 2012 by students of the Strategy and International Management (SIM) program at the University of St. Gallen as part of the SIMagination Challenge course and has been carried on by the following generations of SIM students.

This year the sixth generation of SIM students will be back to Ponta Pora and bring their support and energy.

You have a role to play: PTF is an effort of our community, made possible by everyone. We need your pledge and the power of your network to be able to build lasting impact!


Ponta Pora is a border town between Brazil and Paraguay where an open border without security controls creates the perfect conditions for drug and arms smuggling. Add the fact that the region is one of the poorest in Brazil and you’ll soon understand that the local youth are easily attracted by crime, most of the times just to make a living out of it.

Through collaboration with entities across both sides of the border, we have been helping the youth of Ponta Pora to imagine a life within society and without crime. If you want to give hope to Brazilian and Paraguayans children, this is the right project for you.

Our story

The SIMagination Challenge course is an essential curricular pillar of the Master of Arts in Strategy and International Management of the University of St Gallen. Students are required to plan, execute and reflect upon a challenging project that aims at leaving a positive and sustainable social impact in our society.

We believe that this initiative is not only significantly advancing top management education, but also convincingly addresses the key development needs of effective and responsible leaders in the 21st century.

Planting the Future has historically had very diverse teams including at least one Portuguese speaker. This year our team includes 7 different nationalities and speaks 12 languages.

Past achievements and future targets

In general, Planting the Future has historically been a social impact project focused on increasing the living and educational standards of students and children in Ponta Pora.

This project started as a tree planting initiative in 2012. Prior teams developed it towards the direction of agricultural entrepreneurship and business education training. What different PTF generations have in common is that they have always worked alongside the local youth to "build future together".

The focus of the fifth generation has been the construction of the town’s capoeira school’s canteen, so that the children could pass more time there away from the streets. As part of a remarkable effort, they managed to build the structure of the respective building and now it’s on the sixth generation to finish their work and get the canteen running.

This year we’ll also continue the ongoing effort for sexual education in the town and help a foster home on the Paraguayan side of the town repair their roof. In fact, the latter is in such poor conditions that every time it rains the building floods.

We need your help

In order to continue running the program in 2017 we need YOU. Let's work together to give hope to this community. 

Next to committing our full time on site there are also hard costs involved in making this a sustainable project. All the funds raised in this campaign will go to cover the project expenses for the sixth Planting the Future generation, including appliances for the canteen and building material to repair the foster home. This means your money will be 100% impact for the youth of Ponta Pora.

Risk and challenges

In any project of this kind there are certain risks involved that we have to mitigate. Political instability has for sure to be mentioned. Part of our project in Paraguay relies also on some government funding to keep the foster home running.

Apart from political risk, we have implementation risks we are fully aware of and we’re working to minimise them through strong links with the local community. Contacts with local stakeholder like the head of the police and the mayor have already been established in the past generations. For sexual education, we will be joined by a Brazilian doctor to minimise cultural distance and acquire the proper know-how.

Other ways to help

We understand if you cannot contribute by pledging just yet – there are other ways for you to help us achieve our goal by spreading what we do and staying up to date. We need you to:

  • Spread the word about our project and share this page
  • Stay connected with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Learn more about our project on out website or like and share our page on Facebook:

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us via email:

Planting the Future team 2016 – 2017
Amelie, Ana Cristina, Andrea, Daniel, Luca, Namrata, and Thomas