In 2020, the Municipality of Marvão and the Descalças Cultural Cooperative began a partnership in which the Municipality of Marvão granted the management of Quinta das Avelãs (Portagem-Marvão) to the Descalças to implement arts, education and ecology projects. It is in this line that currently run the projects Terra de Amor-Humor, Bosque Escola Avelãs, Cantina Social, Cabaret Insolito, Férias Arte e Natureza, among others, which have contributed to the pedagogical and cultural offer of the region and attracted the settlement of young people and families.

The European Solidarity Corps (ESC) aims to promote solidarity in European society by involving young people and organisations in accessible and high-quality solidarity activities. Oferece aos jovens oportunidades para mostrar solidariedade através de atividades de voluntariado, estágios ou empregos, bem como projetos de solidariedade baseados na iniciativa dos jovens.

Through the Descalças Cultural Cooperative, BEA is currently hosting two volunteers under this project. At the moment, Suh and Franju, both from Italy, are at BEA and we expect the arrival of another volunteer in September 2021. They participate in pedagogical activities as well as in partner projects (Maria d’Alegria, Férias na Quinta, Cantina Social, among others), developing their interests and learning in the areas of forestschool, nature regeneration, sustainability, food and culture. For this project, Descalças Cooperative have obtained the certification “Seal of Quality” which guarantees compliance with the principles and objectives of the European Solidarity Corps.
If you are looking for a challenge and willing to dedicate time to developing a community learning project, join the European Solidarity Corps and choose to participate in this project.

Supported by Descalças Cooperativa Cultural , the project is defined by its community character in the daily involvement of the local population and the neighbouring municipalities of the district of Portalegre, which actively participates in it, either through voluntary work, donation of goods and materials, or other activities carried out in Quinta das Avelãs or by promoting other activities carried out in Quinta das Avelãs which positively contaminate the development of the project Bosque Escola Avelãs.

Maria d’Alegria is Maria Simões’ de-nomadic face that embraces 2 spaces in Alentejo: Terra d’Amor Humor (Portagem, Marvão) and Casa Maria d’Alegria (Castelo de Vide).

The Social Canteen was a project created in partnership with Salsa em Festa in early 2021 to provide healthy vegetarian meals to children from educational projects at Quinta das avelãs.
Besides feeding the children, it guides its work by the principles of Ethical Cooking, aiming for a sustainable ecological and social impact.
It uses, as much as possible, local products and starts from a relationship of trust and cooperation. It looks for people who produce respecting nature, biodiversity and the life cycle of food. Reduces waste, reuses and finally recycles.

Associação Casaprendizagem was born in an eco-village located in Enterranha and formed by a group of families interested in the option of homeschooling and nature education for their children. Exchanges and training carried out in BEA by members of this association are frequent.