Best Practices

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The observatory is a collection of best practice NGOs from all partner countries, providing details about the organisations.

Portugal

Fermenta is a non-profit entity created in 2013 by a multidisciplinary team, with the aim of promoting social and cultural valorisation through responsible design.

In a logic of concerted intervention and cooperative design, Fermenta designs and implements integrated projects of cultural, social and human development, of regional, national and international character, directed to the community and institutions.

30POR1LINHA is an association of national and international scope that aims to revaluate, preserve and promote oral culture and traditions, as well as the defence of the environment, through the conservation of nature and biodiversity. Thus, they contribute to the sustainable development and the dynamization of communities, the combate of social stagnation, loss of cultural identity and oral processes that characterize these communities.

The objectives of the association are to promote the interaction of people from different backgrounds and generations in order to stimulate the encounter of different cultures and artistic expressions, choosing as fields of action rural and urban communities, covering micro and macro dimensions of the communities in Portugal and beyond, thus contributing to the valuation of education for our heritage (conservation of intangible heritage) and environmental education (nature conservation).

Actions, projects and programs are developed to motivate the expression and transmission of knowledge and experiences, contributing to a greater connection between people, with nature and ways of life that are related, in a balanced way, to biodiversity and sustainability. We use appropriate strategies and resource mobilization, establishing partnerships with different institutions and organizations in an educational and interactive perspective with the target audience and their needs.

Grupo Aprender em Festa (GAF) is an non-profit organization (NGO), located in Gouveia municipality, in the district of Guarda, which has been active for 28 years. In 1989, a group of professionals from different areas (education, health, social, legal) took the initiative to strengthen the link between schools, families and the local community. This movement resulted in the officially constitution of this institution, in January 1993, as a NGO. Its statutes refer to the objectives of supporting children and young people, promoting health and well-being of families, intervening with vulnerable groups at risk of social exclusion, promoting equal opportunities for women and men, educating citizens and community development through play activities with children and young people, aiming to promote their development, in articulation with the educational process, activities of animation, developing their critical awareness and their responsibility as citizens.

Agora Aveiro is a youth association that promotes an active and participative citizenship. We believe that if we want a change to happen, it has to be us making that change. We question paradigms, change mentalities and attitudes and act in our local community.

We create the conditions for valuable projects to happen. We challenge the community to become a power that catalyses the change around us.

From the will of starting and blossoming the Forest School approach in Portugal, the Associação Escola da Floresta – Forest School em Portugal was created. This association pretends to support and validate the creation and development of projects related to Education, Teaching and Professional Growth in school or other entities which wish to follow a Forest School Approach.

Palombar was created in 2000 with the objective to reverse the abandonment cycle of the traditional dovecotes of the Northeast of Portugal, developing actions of conservation and use of these constructions, in order to safeguard the unique architectural, ecological and cultural heritage associated to it. Noting the strong link between the restoration of built heritage and conservation of nature, in 2013 the association decided to change its statutes, reinforcing the symbiosis between these two pillars, currently presenting the following mission: To preserve the natural and built heritage and giving it continuity though the  conservation of resources and the transmission of knowledge using a pedagogical and cooperative approach that is intended to result in the enrichment of individuals and in the dynamization of the rural world.

In this sense the main objectives of Palombar are in fact the conservation of agricultural, forest and wild ecosystems, as well as the preservation of the built heritage and its traditional construction techniques. Through continuous action on several fronts, we aim to boost rural areas, often in a state of abandonment, favouring not only the immediate intervention on the ground, but also the transmission of knowledge that has guided the sustainable management of the landscape by the populations for centuries. Our method is to carry out a direct and practical intervention in the territory and to adopt an inclusive pedagogical approach, since we believe that awareness-raising, transmission of knowledge and creation of partnerships are key factors to succeed long-term in the conservation of natural and cultural heritage.

About half of the food produced in the world each year goes to waste. According to FAO, the current food waste in industrialized countries reaches to 1.3 billion tons per year, enough to feed the roughly 925 million people who are hungry every day. This waste has consequences not only ethical but also environmental, since it involves the unnecessary expenditure of the resources used in its production (such as land, energy and water) and the emission of carbon dioxide and methane resulting from the decomposition of foods that are not consumed. Only in Portugal, one million tonnes of food per year are lost - 17% of what is produced by the country - according to the conclusions of PERDA presented in December 2012.

The reasons for this waste are many and occur throughout the agrifood chain. Intensive production models, inadequate storage and transport conditions, tight deadlines and promotions that encourage consumers to buy in excess are some of the causes that contribute to the current huge waste. Another problem is the preference of the usual distribution channels for "perfect" fruits and vegetables in terms of size, colour and size that restricts consumption to foods that comply with certain aesthetic standards. This requirement results in a waste of about 30% of what is produced by farmers.

The Fruta Feia cooperative arises from the need to reverse such fruit and vegetable standardization trends that have nothing to do with food safety and quality issues. This project aims to combat market inefficiency by creating an alternative market for "ugly" fruit and vegetables that can change consumption patterns. A market that generates value to farmers and consumers and tackles both food waste and unnecessary waste of the resources used to produce them.

Associação BioLiving is a non-profit association, based on the motto "Nature and Education for All". Its main objectives are:

  • to promote sustainability;
  • to encourage environmental citizenship and public participation in the defence of natural values;
  • boosting the social economy;
  • to promote inclusion, peace and solidarity, using education, natural resources and nature protection as a motto;
  • to provide services for monitoring forests and biodiversity and for environmental education;

But essentially it is our aim to demonstrate that nature belongs to everyone and it is for everyone.

The association focus essentially on four main axes:

  • Conservation and Protection of the Environment,
  • Environmental Education,
  • Traininig;
  • Inclusion and Social Involvement.

Although practical actions of nature conservation and habitat restoration are a central component of our work, we believe it is necessary to educate and train communities for sustainability and citizenship, both through moments of non-formal learning and through technical and scientific training in the field of nature protection and biodiversity.

BioLiving's work model focuses on proximity to communities, municipalities, schools, companies and other NGOs, as we believe that working in partnership and in the first person with the various entities and populations facilitates dialogue and the search for solutions for environmental education and nature conservation, and more effectively promotes their involvement and interest in environmental issues.

Educafrica was created by a group of teachers who decided to take advantage of the skills acquired by their students in favor of projects that help underprivileged communities. ONGD Educafrica is a Non-Governmental Organization for the Development of public utility, recognized by the Camões Institute. It works in the areas of Education, Maternal and Child Health and Environmental Sustainability in Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa. The objective is to combine teaching and learning in Portugal with schools and institutions in the PALOP (Portuguese-speaking African countries), developing sustainable projects, of low cost for the beneficiaries, in a formative perspective. The motto is "give the fishing rod and teach to fish."

Mission Statement: Creating Spaces for Nature

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