Exchange for more time for the future

Transnational knowledge exchange and networking for sustainable development in rural areas.
Taking time for the future is not a given, but it is necessary and exactly what it takes from everyone to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and the UN Decade 2030 Ecosystem Restoration. With this project, the RCE Szczecin Lagoon has entered into European exchange with its partner Jardim do Mira, and the region of Odemira, Portugal.On this page, we report in a kind of “online magazine” about the exchange program 2021/2022 and report how it now continues.An up-to-date report on the exchange can be found on the National Agency page at the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training NA BIBB.

Our video documentary

was produced with actors from our German-Portuguese network. Part 1 “Time for Future Exchange” is about the first visit of the German delegation 20-24.04.2022 in Algoceira, Odemira Portugal. Followed by the second part 20-25.09.2022 during the European Sustainability Week in Rothenklempenow, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.


In the region around the Szczecin Lagoon, different formats for education for sustainable development have been successfully implemented in recent years. From nature trails, landscape walks, world acre rallies to a scholarship program “ResidenZukunft – Time for the Future”, which as an interactive format focuses on researching and testing regional challenges. The pilot, implemented in 2021, in Rothenklempenow and awarded the international RCE Award of the United Nations University, is now to take root.

Portugal’s Odemira region faces challenges such as youth migration to cities and beyond to other European countries and little access to organic and sustainable agricultural products.

One of the biggest challenges for the region, however, is the growth of industrial greenhouses for European fruit export which are settling in the nature park. This is a threat to this currently still quite diverse region. The pollution of the drinking water sources by chemical pesticides as well as the increasing water consumption are urgent issues that should be addressed with the help of new participatory approaches in exchange. On the occasion of the launch of the UN Decade 2030 “Restoring Ecosystems” we want to exchange with the actors and partners of the RCE Szczecin Lagoon with the Portuguese partner Jardim do Mira in order to learn from each other and to further develop future places and the scholarship program so that it can be helpful for both regions and the future of the ecosystems.

Report on the exchange:

First, the project team looked for and found actors for the exchange in both regions, as well as exciting future locations, discussion partners and local experts. Thus, in April 2022, guests and partners of the RCE Szczecin Lagoon could first travel to Portugal to learn from there and to network.

From 20 – 24.04.2022, through internal development workshops and networking meetings in Algoceira, seat of the partner association Jardim do Mira and the region Odemira, with various excursions to e.g. Santa Clara Lake, a regional farmer, and the city of Odemira, various topics around the sustainable development of landscapes were addressed and discussed.
A public event on 24.04 in the old school, which has now become a cultural venue, brought the public together with the exchange group. Mutual presentations and best practice examples could be exchanged.

During the return visit in September 2022, a selected group from the partner Jardim do Mira came to Rothenklempenow. Here, too, an internal networking meeting with workshops on further potential cooperation was organized. This exchange was embedded in the European Sustainability Week 2022, which the RCE Stettiner Haff implements annually with its partners. Thus, the Portuguese group could not only visit the agriculture, the forest and the cultural site Schloß Bröllin, but in addition, the network of the RCE’s and with the participants of the week, go into the exchange.

Together it was possible to implement a meeting on various levels and multiperspectively.

We are happy about the result:
New contacts have been established, existing ones have been deepened and a joint project has been created. Besides that, the municipality of Rothenklempenow and Algoceira, Odemira want to enter into a partnership and Portuguese actors are motivated to start a World A cre in Odemira.

In the spring of 2023, the first European prototype of the ResidenZ program will be published. Two candidates will have the opportunity to work in Algoceira and Rothenklempenow on the topic of water for at least 4 months, with the support of the network created.

Applications and more information will be posted on this page.

Thus, this exchange project was the beginning of a hopefully fruitful European cooperation.

Our Fotogalery
photos of the participants and our media team give an insight into the total of 8 days at both locations.

On our Instagram page and Facebook page you will find more impressions about the exchange program.

Contact Deustchland:

Tobias Till Keye
RCE Stettiner Haff

Contact Portugal:

Anja Henckel
Jardim do Mira

The EU programme ‘Erasmus + Small Partnerships’ is funding this trip and the local Active Exchange Programme.

The European Commission’s support for the preparation of this publication does not imply that the author is responsible for the contents of this publication, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.