Help in a vegan and off grid project in Portugal
Update: Vegan-Hills was on fire!
Our region was hit by the biggest wildfire in local history, our beautiful nature and many homesteads of vegan-hills and also others in the region were destroyed.
First the good news:
We were not in personal danger and we are all safe, thanks to the timing of evacuation and the amazing, mostly volunteering firefighters. But many of us lost everything in the flames and nature is almost totally gone. We have decided to continue our community, and we want to regenerate the whole of the land which is over 100ha, but we also need to rebuild one of the ruins, this will give the members who lost their home shelter to start again.
We have already set up a gofundme campaign and any donation would be much appreciative! Link: gf.me/u/yajuth
Besides the need for funding, we also still need volunteers, so please contact Thomas, Jason or Mathieu & Marit. SEE CONTACT DETAILS SECTION BELOW.
The announcement by Thomas
Hello everybody! My name is Thomas, originally from Germany and I live here in the vegan-hills with 2 cats in a colourful community/neighbourhood of people (18 different nationalities) who found and come together through veganism and bought these huge land in the wild South-West Algarve.
I am looking for help at my own spot here and offer you vegan food and a place to stay in a calm, natural environment.
Please take the time to read my whole profile, before you get in contact with me 🙂
(the bathroom for volunteers is a separate building) with:
- running water (but please save water, especially in summer)
- an indoor (not hot) shower (please use only biodegradable, eco-friendly soap/shampoo)
- an indoor compost toilet (please don’t use the nature as you toilet)
(there is a kitchen in the house and an outdoor kitchen, both with a fireplace, electricity and running water)
- in the morning you can make your self a basic breakfast, like toast, yam, oats, cornflakes and an apple or banana. Sometimes we do pancakes, french-toast or scrambled tofu. If you like coffee and/or soymilk you have to bring it on your own.
- I like to cook ones a day for everyone, usually, it is enough for lunch and dinner.
- I also like to make muffins or a cake for the time between.
- If you bring any food on your own, even if it is only for you, please no animal product (only vegan)!
- There is a tree-house with a proper bunk-bed for two volunteers. It has light, electricity and you get a WiFi-signal from the house (no heating).
- There is a camper with a double bed, with a bit more space, also with light, electricity, a small kitchen and even running water and also WiFi (heating possible).
My own tiny house
(you always welcome to come in and to feel home)
- Here is the indoor kitchen, with fridge and freezer and even a washing machine
- If you in need of a hot shower, you also can use the one in the house
- – No Indoor smoking and outside only very careful, especially in the summer and never in the forest!
You can also come with your own tent- or camper van.
Dogs are also welcome, but as I have free cats, they need to be on a leash and can not come into the house.
What are you looking for help with?
Things to be done:
- ditch/trench digging (during the summer, the biggest task)
- tree planting (means mainly digging as well, more a job for winter)
- cave digging (always possible)
- gardening (weeding, planting, extending the windshield, watering, more a winter job)
- watering the plants in pots and in the greenhouse
- forest clearing
- make firewood
- work with clay
- create paths
What’s the mission of your community?
The long-term goal is to lead by example and inspire others to also follow a sustainable and ethical lifestyle.
How many volunteers could you host?
A couple of volunteers
When would you need volunteers?
All year-round, but I hardly plan more as one month in advance
How many hours of help per day?
4-5 hours of help per day
How many days of help per week?
5 days per week – 2 days off
Note about the volunteer work and other expectations
First of all: I have only physical work to do, outside, so you have to be fit! You can decide for yourself when to start, when to take breaks and when do you take a day off.
The biggest task for summer 2020 is digging trenches and holes on a hillside, to reforest it with the first rain. Most trees already in pots, we just need to prepare an area of around 1.000m² for around 150 trees.
I highly recommend bringing your own working gloves! 🙂
Are accommodation and food included?
Yes, we offer food and accommodation
What type of accommodation can you provide?
- Private room for a couple
Diet – nutrition information
VISA – could you provide Visa support/info/invitation letters?
No! we cannot help with Visa/invitation letters – similar requests will be ignored.
As I am not a local and also all other members of the community are not native, I can’t offer you a Portuguese, cultural exchange. Beside of that, we are physically a bit isolated from local settlements. About learning, it depends a lot, how long you will stay, if you stay only one or even two weeks, maybe you learn just how to hold a shovel and brush or use a pickax. If you stay longer, there a for sure more opportunities to getting an impression about off-grid living, permaculture, wood-working, veganism and non-violent ways of life.
If socializing one of your higher priority’s:
I can’t promise anything about that. Currently, we are only ~20 people spread out over more as 100ha. So we do not live close together or spend time together every day. Therefore, please do not expect too much by the wording “community”. The best thing here is, that it is quiet and you have your peace.
What to do in the free time
- surfing, if you are mobile on your own (the nearest beach is 8km by car)
- use the climbing/boulder wall (bring your own shoes if you have) and the slackline
- play and beach volleyball (we do it regularly, the field is on my spot)
- play table tennis (the table is self-build and not perfect)
- explore the nature / go hiking
- do yoga, meditate, read, relax in a hammock
- go swimming in one of a close-by lake
- visit other people in the community
- I can lend also two MTBs, but you would be responsible for…
very close to the ocean what brings always a fresh air during the night
How to get to your site
Be aware: I can’t offer a shuttle service and us live in the wild with no close bus station or good roads. Coming with a trolley is not the best idea (:
The best way to get here is by bus until “Vila Do Bispo”. From there you can easy (hitch-)hike to Pedralva, or get a lift from me or my neighbor.
Is there internet access?
Website: https://vegoa.org/ Volunteer page: https://vegoa.org/vegan-hills/volunteering/
FB page 2: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Vegoa.org
Host Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit the Intentional Community section.