This is the second application period in the context of the ‘Portugal Social Innovation’ initiative.

The objective is then to finance projects that provide innovative solutions to the Algarve’s social problems and challenges.

Any ideas that complement the existing response to the social issues that foster social inequality and exclusion and which have an innovative approach to problems are welcome.

Nine projects were approved in the first phase of applications, which saw €1.4 million granted.

These included a mobile café that travels to the Algarve’s rural interior to combat elderly isolation and loneliness, and an app to promote civic participation.

Francisco Serra, head of the CCDR committee for regional coordination and development, said the programme is important because “only with the participation of society can we improve the conditions of comfort and strengthen the soul of those who suffer”.

“In my role as president of the CCDR, I must work to ensure that material conditions and comfort can be improved and that every person who has needs feels better accompanied”, he added in comments to Sul Informação.

In turn, Loulé Mayor Vítor Aleixo said it has become urgent “to find new answers to old problems”.

“Conventional responses are consolidated, but life is dynamic, it poses new challenges and we need to innovate”, he reflected.

Applications must be submitted before 29 April; funding is 70 percent from the Portugal Social Innovation programme and 30 percent from public or private entities.