With the help and support of others and the local community in Silves, Associação Obrigado Bombeiros was formed and the first event, a live Auction with a BBQ was held in the September of that year. The event was held at the then Quinta da Figueirinha, O’Gradys 12 Bar and a large sum of money was raised which went beyond all expectations and was then divided equally between Silves and Lagoa Bombeiros. A great many local businesses made this event possible by donating meals, services and products for the event.
In September 2017 a similar event was again held at the Quinta Figueirinha, O’Gradys 12 Bar by which time the Associations volunteers and supporters were able to support the event with stalls, imagery and posters. Once again, many local businesses came forward to support the Auction and BBQ and even more money was raised for both stations.
In 2018 the Associação became fully registered and recognised and in the September the Live Auction and BBQ was held at Casa Algarve restaurant on the EN125 near Porches, as more space was needed for a much bigger event.
Sir Owen Gee participated in the event as an auctioneer and a number of memorabilia items were donated by the famous locally residing celebrities, Sir Cliff Richard, Bonnie Tyler and Phillip Schofield. The event returned over €7,000 and was subsequently shared between the Silves and Lagoa.
The results of those first three annual events provided a launchpad in 2019 to expand to more events, with a Music Eventin May, a Golf event in July and the now, well known, Annual Auction and BBQ in September.
The Music Event in May was held in cooperation of the Carvoiero Clube de Ténis and the support of a fantastic line up of Algarve musicians. The Golf event was held in cooperation with Pestana Golf Resorts at the Gramacho course.
Both of these new events were targeted at raising money to support an investment by Silves Bombeiros in a new Urban Fire Truck.
The Annual event in September was also held in cooperation with the Ténis Clube and despite some unusual inclement weather on the day, was still a great success.
In the end 2019 was a great year for the Association with the three events plus a now regular weekly quiz at Quinta Bar yielding a record fund raising year of over €12,000.
2020 A Challenging Year For All
The Global Pandemic has been a hard and sad year for everyone. At AOB, we have been unable to run our events which of course impacts the amount we have been able to raise for our local Bombeiros. We have managed to continue to run our Quiz Evenings at the Quinta Bar in Silves for muchof the time and in September we did run our second Golf Event with Pestana Resorts at the Silves Golfe course which was a successful day. Thankfully, we were all spared in the fire season and the demand on the Bombeiros services was not incredibly high this year.
Over the 4 years of the existence of our Association, we have been able to support our local Bombeiros with funds towards the Urban Fire Truck, Breathing Apparatus, Diving Equipment etc. But of course there are always more needs.
Although our fundraising has been limited this year, we are thankful thatwe can work alongside other Bombeiros associations and charities in the Algarve region and encourage one and all to think about their local Bombeiros whenever they can.
Ex Pat Britons often ask us why there is so much fundraising needed for firefighters in Portugal and we often answer that people can consider Bombeiros in Portugal in a similar way to the Lifeboat charity in the UK The RNLI, which protects and saves lives around the coasts of the UK without any Government funding. Although, here, the Bombeiros do get central funding, their operations are built upon the great principle of “Voluntarios”
We in the Associação, have been lucky enough to visit the stations we help to see their equipment and operations and would encourage everyone to support them where possible.
If you would like to get involved in our work or simply contribute to our fundraising, please contact us in any of the following ways.
Facebook:- @obrigadobombeiroslagoasilves https://www.facebook.com/obrigadobombeiroslagoasilves
Associação Obrigado Bombeiros
NIPC 515 071 200
Banco Credito Agricola (Lagoa)
PT50 0045 7060 4030 2170 5545 0