Location: Sintra, Portugal
City population: 366,470
Project duration: 2017 - ongoing
Project cost: Unknown
Financing source(s): Public local authority's budget

Solidarity Community Gardens

Hortas solidarias

In the municipality of Sintra, the municipal Solidarity Garden Program was approved, which aims to enable the inhabitants to "value solidarity and, in some way, value natural resources" (ref.4) This intervention pretends to create small gardens in urban areas. Not only as a tool for subsistence for families in situations of social vulnerability, but also for to generate access to areas that tend to deteriorate, through a correct management and profitability of resources. To institute an organizational structure that promotes actions for the implementation of sustainable urban development, focused on strengthening family and local agriculture (1)

Urban setting

  • Allotments and community gardens
    • Allotments
    • Community gardens

Key challenges

  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Regeneration, land-use and urban development
  • Sustainable consumption and production (SDG 12)

Main beneficiaries

  • Citizens or community groups
  • Disadvantaged groups
Project objectives
The goals of the intervention appear on article 3 of the municipal regulation of the community gardens (3): A) Provide the Municipality of Sintra with community equipment that will enable its inhabitants the spirit of solidarity and to underpin the value of natural resources for the sustainable development; B) Provide free of charge to those who do not have their own the cultivation, a parcel of municipal land for cultivation, called an agricultural plot, in a Resource Sharing Unit, in one of the Municipal Solidarity Sintra, under the terms and conditions of this Regulation; C) Promote social insertion and inclusion and contribute to the reduction of poverty among families, Through the cultivation of the soils to support their subsistence; The program also aims to "combat social exclusion" and "reduce poverty".(ref.4)
Implementation activities
This intervention is still in the planning stage. The formalization of the candidacy by the interested people that takes place in June 2017; The list of those selected will be posted on the municipality's website and notified individually; Traning: To promote a culture and, consequently, a healthier diet, the Chamber of Sintra imposes a condition for horticulturalists: "is that, when selected, they attend a course of organic farming" (ref.4)

Type of initiating organisation

  • Local government / municipality

Management set-up

Co-governance or hybrid governance (mix of responsibilities between government and non-government actors)

Participatory approaches/ community involvement

  • Consultation (e.g. workshop, surveys)
  • Joint implementation (e.g. tree planting)
  • Co-management/Joint management
Details on the roles of the organisations involved in the project
According to the main page of the intervention (1) it is stimated that in the next months a public contest will take place to adjudicate 157 agricultural fields.
Project implemented in response to ...
... an EU policy or strategy? Unknown
... a national policy or strategy? Unknown
... a local policy or strategy? Yes
Regulation of Community Gardens of Sintra, approved by the Municipal on December 20, 2012 (2) Resolved by the chamber meeting of December 01, 2015, Approved in municipal assembly of Sintra of February, 2016.
Expected impacts
  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Regeneration, land-use and urban development
  • Social justice, cohesion and equity (SDG 10)
  • Sustainable consumption and production (SDG 12)
Details on impacts and indicators used The project is still in its early stages but it already provided some positive impacts in the community since one of its main goals is to promote social insertion and inclusion. The local population applied for the tender and is generally interested in participating in the project. The NBS promotes the sustainable and organic growth of vegetables to fight poverty. Also, this big are area was transformed into useful horticultural plots. (ref.1,4)

Presence of formal monitoring system


Presence of indicators used in reporting


Presence of monitoring/ evaluation reports


Availability of a web-based monitoring tool

(1) Camara Municipal Sintra: Câmara disponibiliza 157 talhões nas hortas solidárias [WWW Document], n.d. . Câmara Munic. Sintra. URL http://www.cm-sintra.pt/camara-disponibiliza-157-talhoes-nas-hortas-solidariaso (accessed 8.2.17). (2) Camara Municipal Sintra: Hortas Solidárias [WWW Document], n.d. . Câmara Munic. Sintra. URL http://www.cm-sintra.pt/hortas-solidarias (accessed 8.2.17).
(3) Regulamento Municipal das Hortas Solidárias de Sintra [WWW Document], n.d. . Câmara Munic. Sintra. URL http://www.cm-sintra.pt/phocadownload/PDF/acao_social/regulamento-municipal-das-hortas-solidarias-de-sintra-2016.pdf (accessed 8.2.17).
(4) As hortas florescem nas ”cidades de cimento” de Lisboa e Sintra. URL: http://p3.publico.pt/actualidade/ambiente/23827/hortas-florescem-nas-cidades-de-cimento-de-lisboa-e-sintra