Rede Convergir – Sul
The aim of the project ‘Quatro Ventos’ (literally “Four Winds”), created about a year ago, is to get people to connect with nature and to re-establish a healthy relationship with the planet’s ecosystem. The association was conceived by Tycho Huussen, a 38-year-old Dutchman.
The idea of the association is to spread information and teach about ecology and permaculture. The aim is to demonstrate the advantages that arise when there is a greater connection with nature.
The way in which this association communicates its ideas in different communities is by planning a number of activities relating to the association’s area of interest.
‘Quatro Ventos’ plans different workshops, classes and retreats covering a range of areas relating to personal growth and awareness, such as ecology, arts and crafts, dance and music, permaculture and natural construction.
“The idea in the long term will be to create a community at Quatro Ventos with a good local economic basis. Trying to be self-sufficient so that our local residents become sustainable and making it possible for them to bring up their families in this approach. Then, we would like to live in or create a community and live life according to our values, trying to create our own sources of income. This would be by ensuring respect for the environment and the experience of living in an ecological community,” says Tycho Huussen.
At present, the community works in small groups, with around 7 to 10 people with prospects of progressing. This is because, according to Tycho Huussen, there are increasing numbers of people interested in this topic.
“The experience that I know about from other communities that already exist makes this a unique challenge. But we would like to grow as a community, and explore step by step.”
One of the major projects in hand, which complements ‘Quatro Ventos’, is the production of artisan beer using local products. The beer ‘Costa Amada’, made from local ingredients and water from Monchique, is being produced after several years of study, research and attempts at production. The product stands out because of its difference, given that local products are used. According to the promotor, this beer “has a more complex and bitter flavour. It is made in a more traditional manner than the other beers because of the process that is used and also because it is made using different spices and flavours.”
The beer is produced all year round and the business is expanding. At present, an average of 100 bottles of beer are produced every six months. The ambition is to increase this to 150 bottles in an equivalent period. “This project is important because it is in line with my beliefs and lifestyle. I always wanted to know more about nature, the oceans and differences in climate. At some stage, I became frustrated with ecological problems and decided to try and find solutions to improve our nature. I would like to try and change certain lifestyles. And guarantee a self-sustaining life, respecting the environment,” Tycho Huussen concluded.