The great forest fire here in Portugal this week has killed countless trees and now many people are facing existential problems.
Dear friends of mine, Mik and Reiny, have been affected. Their home land is situated in the middle of the burnt area and they now need help to make it livable again. Please read the article, watch the photos, and support them with a donation! Every amount, small or large, helps! If we all stand together, all that seems almost impossible alone can be managed well.
Raised of 5,000 € target - updated: 12.09.23
A huge fire, with devastating effects on the landscape and the existence of very many people. An area of more than 12,500 hectares was in flames; with temperatures above 40°C and strong winds, the fire continued to spread for several days before the fire brigade, which was deployed day and night with more than 1,000 men, hundreds of vehicles and 10 fire-fighting aircraft, managed to get it under control.
The fire brigade, called bombeiros here, does an incredibly good job and they really do their best to save people’s dwellings.
On my friends’ land two people have been living permanently for about a year, plus sometimes more, sometimes less others, who stayed temporarily. I also lived here several times during this last year, in a tent, in a bus.
Building up a self-sustained life and a community … … anyone who has ever done something like this knows about all the many challenges and how much it takes.
Hard work, day after day, a lot of love and all the money that was there has gone into the project this year – and a lot has already been built.
What was previously an overgrown site with a ruin on it has become a home. The ruin a habitable house, many beautiful sites for vans, tents, caravans, yurts, … have been levelled, structures for water and electricity created, a vegetable garden as well as fruit trees have been planted .. to name just a few of the great changes that have been brought about there.
Here are a few impressions, before and after the fire:
The dwellings of the residents, a permanent house and a caravan with an awning, miraculously survived the fire. The house unharmed, caravan and tent slightly damaged. The solar installations also remained intact.
However, the entire water system was destroyed. Burnt, melted. In such a hot, dry area as here, offgrid, in the campo, a good 20 minutes’ drive from the nearest town, water is essential. For the people, the animals, and to irrigate the plants. The vegetable garden and fruit trees were also spared from the fire, but will no longer be salvageable without water.
In order to make the land habitable again and to be able to continue living there, the water system needs to be rebuilt. I. e., a new pump, which pumps up the water from the natural small lake, at a low-lying point of the land. The cables to operate the pump. Many many metres of pipes to transport the water over the land. A new water deposit. Plus all kinds of connections, taps, filters …
In addition, some repairs are necessary to make the caravan and tent winter- and rain-proof again.
The costs for this are estimated at 5,000 euros.
Please help and support this with your donation! We can’t raise the sum alone right now – but if everyone reading this gives just a little, we can do it together.
Bank transfer is possible, too – please send me a message and i will send you the details.
I receive the donations and pass them on.
Despite all the destruction and the associated feelings of grief – what touched me most this week was (and is) this incredible togetherness here. Everyone helped. So many continue to help.
The many firefighters had to be supplied with water and food. Obviously, this could not be done by the official side, and so the population here took over. Everyone gave what they could. Drinking water (2000 to 3000 litres per day), juices, snacks, food, money were donated. From the mostly really poor population here. Cafés cooked and provided meals for the firefighters, and, afterwards, also for the people who lost their houses. Within the strong community here, sleeping places were provided, clothes and other material items were collected for those who lost everything in the fire. And so on ….
And this is how it should be. How life is meant to work. We are all here together. Here to support each other.
Thank you for being with us!
Thank you for your support!
Please donate, and please spread the word, send this fundraiser to your friends, share it on your social channels.
Raised of 5,000 € target - updated: 12.09.23
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