ESC @ Planeta Alecrim, 10 months, Marvão, Portugal

Planeta alecrim activities

Introducing Planeta Alecrim

Planeta Alecrim is a small non-profit Learning Community for Education and Social Innovation. The main activity of this association arose from the need of a group of parents to create a supportive community for the education of their children in this rural region. But soon it started to develop activities aimed at the community in general, through social and cultural actions.

Thus, extending the educational practice beyond the school, we aim to work education as a collective act, actively involving the community in the consolidation of a more just, participatory society, capable of motivating a deep cultural transformation.

About Marvão

Marvão is located in the least populated district of Portugal, Portalegre, a rural place where most people still live off the land. In the area of a natural park (Parque Natural da Serra de São Mamede) it has impressive wildlife, natural landscapes and even archeological digs. Being inland, it takes around 3 hours by car to the main portuguese coastal cities of Lisbon and Porto.

Our Project

In this individual volunteer project we will host two volunteers in the region of Marvão. The activities to be developed depend on the volunteers’ profile, their interests, expectations or needs, as well as their assessment of community needs. However, we have three guidelines that should guide the development of projects:

1. Education

Through the promotion of non-formal education methodologies and regarding learning as a lifelong process we aim to improve core competences, knowledge and skills of our community. The promotion of a holistic education that looks at the learner as a whole, not relegating his body (rhythm, movement, body expression) or his spirit (ideas, motivations,feelings) to the background. Underlying all education and training initiatives will be the promotion of European values, highlighting solidarity, social cohesion, intercultural dialogue, active citizenship or gender equality;

2. Health and Wellness

Health promotion and wellness activities, as well as healthy lifestyles and active aging. Examples of activities could be: exploring Serra de São Mamede Natural Park, promoting outdoor leisure activities, fighting fires or reforestation; raise awareness for recycling and other sustainable policies, farming on the community garden; encourage sports, or other regular practices such as dance, yoga, meditation; or encourage a healthy diet with culinary workshops;

3. Creative arts, social innovation and culture

Activities to promote the creative arts, social innovation and culture, such as cultural nights (with special emphasis on the cultures of the participating countries), cinema cycles, music days, artistic workshops, plays, concerts, collaboration processes and others, aiming at the empowerment and capacity building of the local community.

Volunteer Profile

If you are between 18 and 30 years old, you’ve never participated in an ESC/ EVS (European Solidarity Corps / European Volunteer Service) and are motivated to participate in our project, willing to learn, reflect and engage in intercultural and intergenerational exchange, maybe this project is just for you! Check the tickbox below!

Is this volunteer you?

  • Availability and motivation to work with different generations, both children and elderly people;
  • Motivation to adapt to a rural and inland context;
  • Motivation to communicate with locals, be flexible and open-minded;
  • Sensitivity to issues of multiculturalism, diversity, inclusion and motivation to deepen your knowledge in the field of community work;
  • Sensitivity to issues of sustainability, ecological and environmental education and interest in recycling and upcycling projects;
  • Willingness to learn Portuguese, practice English with the Planeta Alecrim community, as well as sharing your own native language, in an informal and peer learning process;
  • Commitment to share what you have experienced and learned when you return to your home country, with the support of Planeta Alecrim.

In the selection of participants for our project, we will give priority to young people with fewer opportunities, who face one or more of the following obstacles: health problems, educational difficulties, geographical obstacles, cultural differences, economic obstacles or social obstacles.

Start date: ASAP – If you are interested, apply and we will contact you shortly.

If you want to learn more about this ESC project, contact Boyka Boneva by emailing

    Expression of interest

    Please fill out the following form in order to express your interest on this European Solidarity Corps project.

    Language Abilities (Spoken) *
    1. English
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    2. Other
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