Bergwaldprojekt Catalonia works for the maintenance, protection and care of forest and mountain scenery through forestry management and improving public awareness. Volunteering weeks are organised for the public to undertake conservation and protection work to promote awareness and understanding of the importance of mountain forests.
The Catalan Pyrenees covers a surface area of over 10,000km, playing an important role in the water supply to 7million people. The forests are vital for protection against erosion and water management at the headwaters of the main rivers. The area is also an important tourism destination for skiing, hiking and climbing. Bergwaldprojekt Catalonia promotes the need for mountain forests, lively mountain communities and biodiversity conservation, believing the best way to understand the needs of mountain forests is by working in them. 8 volunteering weeks will be run in Val d’Aran, Pallars Sobirà and La Cerdanya, involving habitat reforestation, forest thinning, restoration of forest paths, census of capercaille populations, bio-engineering against erosion and recovery of pastures.
Bergwaldprojekt Catalonia completed the work in the summer of 2012 – 8 weeks of volunteer work were held, and participiants restored foot paths, thinned forest and restored habitat. The number of weeks of restoration work was doubled from the previous year, the number of team members was increased and public impact was greater than the previous year through the internet and other diverse media. In fact the working weeks were overbooked, such was their popularity!
Overall, 114 volunteers worked with Projecte Boscos, restoring 1.3km of path, and thinning and restoring habitat to 43,000m2 of forest. The strategy for 2013 is to consolidate the three project locations, the number of working days organised and therefore the quality of work undertaken. Awareness of the organisation is growing, as is popularity of the work days offered.