The Municipality of Odemira characterized by immense landscape diversity, extending between the plains, the mountains and the sea, a total of 1720.25 km2, of which the Mira river and the dam of Santa Clara, give a special color. In area, this is the largest municipality throughout the country, despite having just over 26,000 inhabitants.

Its territory is divided by 13 parishes, each with its special features: Relíquias, Sabóia, São Luís, São Martinho das Amoreiras, Vila Nova de Milfontes, Luzianes-Gare, Boavista dos Pinheiros, Longueira / Almograve, Colos, Santa Clara-a-Velha, São Salvador e Santa Maria, São Teotónio Vale de Santiago.

Odemira is the country’s largest municipality, with an economy based on primary sector, including agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and forestry. At the level of the tertiary sector, there is the retail trade and services. Manufacturing is virtually non-existent, but Odemira is a county of agricultural production including irrigation.

The population density is 14.9 inhabitants / km2, with a total population of about 26,000 people (2011).

«Odemira Acredita em Ti» is a project in the field of youth that aims to affirm the youth and their role in the municipality of Odemira, promoting territorial competitiveness for the young and their mobilization for civic participation active. A cross-sectional design to various areas (participation, citizenship and bond; economy and innovation, housing, culture and leisure, education and environment, employment and initiative, eco-tourism, sustainable and adventure, energy efficiency, sport adventure …) that is developing.

Resulting from several projects in various areas expressed, it is intended that the volunteers, can not only help create new dynamics of the use and enjoyment by the community, develop related experiments aimed at improvement of implemented projects, promotion of projects with the various public, add value and knowledge to technicians who will interact, absorb knowledge that can carry into our reality. Presentation of new solutions and practical measures of valuation of projects.

The Sector for Youth will be in charge of project for European Voluntary Service, which is coordinated by a person who´s responsible to follow the entire process, the municipality of Odemira submit the application and ensures the financial and administrative responsibility for the project, distributing the EVS background for all stakeholders through the protocol established between the various actors. Cooperation with the use of local authorities in the territory, particularly with associations experienced in EVS that will make the technical monitoring will be ensured.

The municipality of Odemira wants to work with the greatest possible number of organizations, with and without experience in the Youth in Action / Erasmus +, so as to spread opportunities throughout the country, promoting the participation of rural young people with fewer opportunities and to support the initiative own these organizations and local young people within the Youth thematic.

Date: 01.09.2015 — 31.08.2016 (1 ano)

Place: São Luís, Portugal

Host organization: GAIA Alentejo – Grupo de Transição de São Luís


GAIA is a Portuguese Environmental NGO. Since 1996 we’ve conducted numerous campaigns at local and na-tional level and have been involved in international campaigns, mainly at European level. GAIA is a member of MARE Meditarranean Youth Network; EYFA European Youth For(est) Action; YEE Youth and Environment Euro-pe; CPADA Portuguese Confederation of Environmental Associations. GAIA is presently working in Lisboa and Alentejo, aiming at raising awareness on environmental issues such as eco-consumption, food sovereignty and freedom of seeds, nonGMO or the transition movement to a future without oil.

In Alentejo region, GAIA is working in rural environment with the local community of all ages as target group. GAIA is currently supporting the Convergence Centre initiative in Aldeia das Amoreiras village and the Transition movement initiative in São Luís village – both projects are lead by citizens and are focused on rural sustainable development in Odemira municipality. In São Luís regular activities are currently lead by the action groups of the Inner transition (meetings, open talks, workshops), Arts (meetings, collecting local memory, cultural activities at the Lagar centre) and Economics (meetings and discussions, creating artistic objects for the comprehension of economy, ReCo network of local production and consumption).


The hosting project in S. Luís occurs in the context of the Transition movement, an initiative led by citizens who are aware of global environmental and social challenges, are active in their local communities and are connected through a local, national and international network.

Look further: Transition movement at international level (, national level in Portugal ( and local level in S. Luís (

One volunteer will be hosted in S. Luís for 12 months, with the objective of supporting the cultural activities at the Lagar place (a former wine press), the one-off activities of the Transition initiative of S. Luís and the ReCo network of local production and consumption


  • The volunteer will be hosted in S. Luís in a rural house, shared with a young family with a child (2 years old), where s/he will have her/his individual room. It is possible to share another house, if the volunteer isn’t comfortable with this situation.
  • Meals will be provided by the Day Care centre of S. Luís (lunches at week days) and a regular amount will be given to cover the rest of the food expenses, including weekends and holidays.
  • A bicycle will be provided to the volunteer for local use. In case transportation is needed outside S. Luís for the EVS activities, this will be organised by GAIA and partner entities, with no costs for the volunteer.




• Cultural activities at the Lagar place: support the dissemination and documentation of activities; support the preparation and implementation of exhibitions, concerts, debates, workshops, theatre plays…; support maintaining the garden and the built structure of the Lagar.

• One-off activities of the Transition initiative of S. Luís: support permaculture activities (vegetable garden and building of ecological systems); support the manufacture of natural cosmetics; participation in the events of the national Transition network; other.

• Activities of ReCo network of local production and consumption: support updating the communication networks; support the preparation of baskets every two weeks; support the organization of the gathering every three months.



The volunteer for GAIA Alentejo/ Transition S. Luís should:

• have a clear interest in ecological lifestyles and in reflecting about society, thinking globally and acting locally;

• have specific motivation to live one year in a small community (2000 inhabitants) with rural characteristics;

• have interest in and ease of learning Portuguese language;

• be active in her/his local community and to be experienced in associations or other social movements;

• have a personal interest in developing (some of) the following competences: experience in the transition movement, at local, national and international level; knowledge on climate change, peak oil, crisis of the actual financial system; experience in inner transition, organization of local communities, participatory techniques, work methodologies for organizing projects and activities, permaculture and manufacture of natural cosmetics, information and communication techniques.

Specific interests and motivations of the candidate should be expressed in the Motivation Letter.

We make no distinction regarding ethnic origin, religion, political or sexual orientation of the candidate, nor regarding academic degrees.


Selection process

For the selection of the volunteers we will need:
Europass CV with picture (made in the last month)

Motivational letter, writing that your sending organisation will be “Building Bridges”. We ask all candidates to send a specific letter of motivation – why they want to volunteer with us rather than just a general EVS one.

Remember to write in the motivation letter that your sending institution is “Asociación Building Bridges”.

All documents written in english you can send to: with subject “EVS Portugal Odemira”

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