Joao & Kiat's Fire Recovery Fund

(Click to watch the 4:36 video that tells the whole story, details below)

Please help us rebuild all that was lost in the fire. Take a few minutes and do something good. Even if you only share this page with your social network, you have already made a huge positive difference in the lives of some really kind, generous, humble people who spend all their energy caring for others, putting heart and soul into this land and community. Crowdfunding works when everyone participates. Even the tiniest gesture of care is so valuable. Your contribution affirms the human spirit of solidarity and shared values, and helps to spread our story and financial need across a broad network of support. Thank you so much for participating! ❤️

If anyone has doubts about the credibility of this fundraiser, they can contact me by clicking my name (Sean Dahlen) in the right side column or find me here on facebook.  We are happy to respond to any questions or concerns.
We will update this page regularly to show progress.

Who am I? 
My name is Sean. João & Kiat are like family for me. I was staying in one of the houses during the fire, and I’ll stay to rebuild for as long as I can. Though we lost almost all our possessions in the fire, we are all ok, wearing donated clothes and living in donated campers, working day and night to clear the land and rebuild, overwhelmed by the outpour of love and support as we sort this all out. All donations go directly to their accounts. I'm just here to manage the online campaign and build the project emerging from the ashes. 

(3 of us in my little house days before the fire)

Who are João and Kiat?

João and Kiat live in a small village near the popular surfing beaches of Ericeira, Portugal. She is a PhD researcher in sustainable coastal development, working to protect our shores from erosion. He is a sailor, surfer, horse trainer, and musician. In 2011, they bought a small piece of land where they lived in a tent as they started to build from nothing. Over the past 6 years, they created a sustainable paradise on this land they call Quinta da Paz Silvestre (Land of Wild Peace). They shaped the landscape, building homes with natural and recycled materials for themselves, their animals, and visiting friends. They raised horses with free space to roam, took in cats, pigeons, ducks, and so many dogs, all living like one big family. They built a studio where Joao shared yoga classes with the community, and recorded music (including the song in the video and the score for a documentary film). Everyone who came to the Quinta left inspired, touched by their sincerity and the simple harmony of it all, the integrated vision of love and dedication.

What Happened?

On Sunday October 15, a rare south wind caused by Hurricane Ophelia helped spread over 500 fires across Portugal. One of them ripped through the valley, gaining momentum as it consumed Eucalyptus plantations, and finally reaching the Quinta around sunset. There was just enough time to gather the people, horses and dogs,
the most important documents, and drive to safety across a line of fire before it was all gone.  Thankfully, all beings survived unharmed except for 1 pigeon and 5 ducks. The rest is ash. 3 homes, horse stables, a garage and car, musical instruments, appliances, furniture, farm equipment, gardens, clothes… all gone in minutes.

What We Have & What We Need

In the days after the fire, the community has come together in solidarity. They offered food, shelter, clothes, and help to clear the charred landscape. After just 4 days, we all moved back to the land, where we now stay in trailers during the process of recovery and development. The local community has helped with immediate needs, but rebuilding will take support from the larger global community.

Through the years, João and Kiat have spent hundreds of thousands of euro and countless hours building this space. Even after the fire claimed almost all their possessions, their first question was how they could preserve the essence of Quinta and rebuild in greater service to the community. Plans are in motion already to build a sanctuary of wild peace, a place open to the community, visitors, education, and events. 

The first step, however, is to clean up the mess and build a home for Joao & Kiat. They need a place that is comfortable and safe, where they can live as the larger project evolves. A local architect has already offered his service. Landscape designers with an eye toward permaculture have come to evaluate the property and lay plans. We are working with local government to expedite the whole process. All the creative pieces are in motion to create an even better story on the Quinta. First, we need to get them basic shelter, some sense of normal life. We are renovating the old horse stables to make a simple house, but the build requires materials and labor. 

How can you help?

- Crowdfunding works when everyone participates. Even the tiniest gesture of care is so valuable. Your contribution affirms the human spirit of solidarity and shared values, and helps to spread our story and financial need across a broad network of support. Can you help us spread the story so we can focus our energy on the rebuilding?

Please consider some options below:
-$/€ help to purchase resources, raw materials, tools, and labor to build a new home and develop the land
- $/€ help to replace all that was lost, including 3 houses, horse stables and gear, 1 garage and car, recording studio equipment, musical instruments (drum set, upright bass, keyboards, microphones, loop machines), surfboards, furniture, animal feed, fences, garden tools, farm equipment, mechanic tools, welding tools
- Sharing our links (For this page The video with your social network helps to reach more friends, family, those in our global tribe who share the values at the Quinta. João & Kiat have friends and family around the world, but they need our help to spread the word! 

* All donations go directly to João & Kiat's accounts.
- We understand that funding this campaign is complicated since we have family around the world, and each country has unique currency and money management preferences. We are doing our best to address all concerns and offer options for everyone.
- Some contributors, particularly in the USA, have concerns about currency conversion, bank charges, etc. 1€ is equal to 1.16$ as I write this. You can find exchange rates here. All conversions for credit card donations are automatic through Gofundme and PayPal. One American friend just donated through Gofundme. It took him two minutes, and there were no unexpected charges.
- If you wish to contribute using PayPal, click
- If you prefer direct bank transfer/IBAN, please contact us for the details.
- We're available for any questions. Just click the mail icon next to my name (Sean Dahlen) in the right side column of this page.

Your support affirms a dream of natural harmony is possible and worth developing. Everyone who meets this couple or visits the Quinta is inspired by the principles they live, the things they create. They spend all their energy caring for others, putting heart and soul into this land and community. Let’s show them such things matter and help them to build an even better dream from the ashes. 

As the Quinta is reborn, it will certainly be a thing of beauty.

For more photos of the Quinta before and after the fire:

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Donations (65)

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  • Or Michaelo
    • €120 
    • 5 yrs
  • Anonymous
    • €111 
    • 6 yrs
  • Sarita Alitowski
    • €40 
    • 6 yrs
  • Liane Alitowski
    • €40 
    • 6 yrs
  • Mark Norman
    • €50 
    • 6 yrs
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Sean Dahlen

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