MAPS creates housing for LGBTQI+ homeless people in the Algarve

Protocol for the Porta Xis1 project has already been signed by the director of the District Center for Faro of Social Security

MAPS is preparing to create an accommodation solution for LGBTQI+ homeless people in the Algarve, similar to the shared apartments that already exist in the region.

With the support announced by the Minister of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security, «the opportunity arose to create specific responses for LGBTIQ+ people in a homeless situation» and, from there, «we had the idea of ​​the Porta Xis1 project», says Fábio Simão, president of MAPS, to the Sul Informação.

This project arises from a partnership between MAPS – Movimento de Apoio à Problemática da Aids, an entity dedicated to many other areas besides the one indicated in its name, with Associação Xis – Group for the Promotion and Protection of LGBTI, «with which we have a great intimacy", and also with the Municipality of Faro.

The protocol was signed «very recently» with Margarida Flores, director of the District Center for Faro Social Security, this being «a more dedicated response to LGBTQI+ people who need it, in a kind of positive discrimination, in order to try to safeguard them and give them due attention».

Working in the Algarve for about 30 years, MAPS has done “a little bit of everything that is necessary to try to improve people's lives”, in an attempt to have “a more inclusive and fair society”. To this end, «various answers to the many problems of the Algarve» have been developed, emphasizes Fábio Simão.

Looking at the problems of young people related to gender identity, sexuality and LGBTQI+ issues, MAPS decided to accept the challenge and, along with the Porta Xis1 project, is working on other initiatives in these areas.

«We participate in the Algarve LGBTI+ Pride March, which takes place in Faro, we carry out sensitization actions in schools about sexuality and we always try to make our contribution», explains the MAPS president.


Fábio Simão, president of MAPS – Photo: Rúben Bento | Sul Informação


Basically, the purpose of MAPS is to try to make society more egalitarian, perfect and just, regardless of any circumstances or characteristics. «We see all the opportunities we have and, when we feel that there is a lack of action in a certain area, or that we can do something, we accept the challenge and go after it».

“We are aware that MAPS has great recognition and we feel that with it comes great responsibility. We are responsible for doing more and better. We take this very seriously and, whenever there is a challenge or an idea, we go”, exclaims Fábio Simão.

«Unfortunately, we have so many projects that sometimes it is difficult to give 100% to everything, but we do not stop making our contribution, participating. We believe that all ideas are valid and we work a lot in partnership».

For the MAPS president, his association is a kind of “patchwork” in which “we don't take out pieces, but we sew even more”.

«All these areas make up the blanket that we are and, whenever we can or when we realize that we need another little patch, we go there and sew, not neglecting all the other projects we have. We create new things, but we do not lose sight of what we already do», concludes Fábio Simão.

Among the many projects to which he is dedicated, the MAPS is also preparing to open the doors of the Social Emergency Accommodation Center (CAES) in the Algarve, which will appear in Faro, continues to help homeless people in the Algarve with the LEGOS Project.