QRER – Cooperative for the Development of Low Density Territories, which saw its project “Rio Arade: route of the Boião-Azilheira sources” being “tragically affected” by the fire in São Marcos da Serra, expresses its “solidarity” with the victims of the fire, considering that the adoption of measures is “unavoidable”.
In the statement signed jointly by 14 managers of the companies that make up the QRER, this cooperative pays its “homage to all those who were involved in the work of fighting the fire and supporting the victims”.
the fire, whichopened on the 25th and 26th of July, in the parish of São Marcos da Serra, affected the project “Rio Arade: route of the Boião-Azilheira fountains”, inaugurated in February 2020 by QRER.
With the opening of the route, «a work was carried out to raise awareness among the general public and the agents responsible for managing the territory of the importance of the Serra in the global context of the Algarve and Baixo Alentejo regions and of the need for protection and preservation of the landscape values in question – human and natural values'.
Given the weaknesses that affect this territory, QRER considers “the adoption of measures appropriate to the reality experienced, both in the short and in the long term, cannot be postponed”.
“In the case of immediate support measures for the victims of the fire, we express our real concern, given that Law No. in mainland Portugal between the 108th and 2017th of June and the 23th and 17th of October 24, leaving victims of occurrences after those dates without the proper legal framework», considers QRER.
The cooperative wants clarification on the "mechanisms currently available for the competent entities and services to guarantee the provision of assistance to the victims of the fire in São Marcos da Serra, municipality of Silves, in terms of: housing (reconstruction or restoration of ), health (psychosocial support), protection and security, agricultural, livestock or forestry income affected, resources and natural heritage affected'.
The objective is that an interdisciplinary team able to identify the different types of damage caused and the speedy provision of the necessary support, depending on the specific reality that characterizes life in this parish in the interior of the municipality of Silves, be placed on the ground.
Furthermore, QRER says it is «totally available to actively contribute to the identification and implementation of the measures to be adopted, within its legal framework of action».
Patrícia de Jesus Palma, born in the parish of São Marcos da Serra, responsible for the project “Rio Arade: route of the Boião-Azilheira fountains”, member of the QRER cooperative and one of the signatories of the communiqué issued today, recalled that “we are again devastated by the problem that was at the base of this project, which had been the fire of 2016». That fire, she added, "burned exactly the same area, only six years ago it went up from south to north and this time it was the other way around."
During the final class of the Brief Course on Algarve History, at the University of Algarve, where Patrícia Palma went to present the project, now reduced to ashes, she asked: «And now? What is the hope? This work, which was a crumb, had had some effect on the people who came to know this territory, namely the mayors of the municipality of Silves».
Patrícia said that she hopes that, now, the people, namely «those who live there, can be mobilized with us so that now, after the fire, we can intervene in the territory so that, six years from now, the same thing will not happen again. same".
The person responsible for the project that involved the population of the area between Boião and Azilheira stressed that «our experience is that, after the great fire show, nothing happens».
“We must be able to pressure entities to develop more effective mechanisms to effectively manage these territories”, he concluded.
Read here QRER's statement in full.