We didnt set our first bar very high. With 1000,00 € we can get the basic things done, or at least start with getting them done :D Lets push it further!
So - freakin - awesome! Thanks to you we reached 100% and can, with everything coming in above this bar, start dreaming and fullfilling our wildest eco-dreams.
What is this project all about?
După Gard is a Bio-Retreat (B&B) using ONLY sustainable & renewable energy and local bio/organic products (food, drinks & cosmetics). It is located in the heart of Transylvanian mountains (Romania). Despite its excellent plane-connections (the international airport in Klausenburg / Cluj-Napoca is only 70 km away), the village community of Poşaga – where our project is based- lays in a fairytale wilderness which (trust us) is nowhere to find in Europe. Rugged mountain-chains, soft & voluptuous hills, and miles and miles of Europe’s last standing virgin forests. The bio-diversity can be best experienced when our guests visit Poşaga’s natural reservation: untouched by human aggression, here live and grow animals and plants, from which the healing plants can easily make a small encyclopedia. One should point out that the wolves-packs, Europe’s largest remaining brown bear population, the lynx, the mountain roaster, the black grouse, the stag beetle are just to name a few of the protected species that the nature-enthusiast could observe. Quite the opposite from the plants’ and animals’ paradise, the number of locals living in Poşaga has dramatically decreased in the last 28 years as many of them left to live abroad; a lot of those remaining still live just like 100 years ago—meaning that the manual (traditional) labor is used on a daily basis and that the observation of traditions is quite strong. Last, but no least, the architectural details are amazingly beautiful in their simplicity (some houses still have straw-roofs while most houses are made of hand-carved wood).
This campaign brings us to Dupa Gard’s Grand Finale – meaning it will be the last but most epic of the 3 campaigns we’ve had here for our project. So far, we managed to have the 1 hectare campaign – place (with its French-toilet & solar-shower) ready, the shell-construction of the Dupa Gard house stands proudly (as the many pictures stand to prove); also, the windows (except from one) and the entrance door are there, the inside insulation of the walls (done with recycled celluloses) & bathroom…well…check! Not to forget we also, thanks to all your great help, managed to install a solar-grid (true, only half of the needed capacity) and also to consolidate the ground in front of the house. For further info, please go to our blog (German ONLY) called “Eine Woche mit Sponsoren”. In short: one of our main sponsors visited us in Summer and were pretty impressed with our progress. The ones out there ready to support this round, are more than welcome to visit us in 2019 and see for yourselves how far your support has brought us.
WHAT IS STILL MISSING is the interior (phonic) insolation of both ceilings and the roof, furniture & doors to your rooms (only the bathroom has one), finishing the walls (mainly natural paint), a terracotta fire-place, a full equipped kitchen. More details to follow below.
What is the project goal and who is the project for?
The main purpose of our project is to offer our guests an accommodation that breaks the boundaries of a mere visiting the countryside; the means to our purpose can be either specific workshops, guided tours or the simple look-around the surroundings. Regardless the methods used, we promise this will be no ordinary blitz visit as we kindly ask all our guests to stay a minimum of 3 nights. This decision is directly connected to the fact that the locals – mainly because of their primitive, traditional living – still maintain a very close bound to the surrounding nature and, hence, no blitz visit could proper introduce anyone to how these people work, celebrate or simply enjoy any given holy Sunday.
As instruments of trying to make our guests become
natives (yes! natives!) we chose not to have any
conventional electricity in our Bio-Retreat (only what our solar
panels will provide), consequently also no electrical heating (wood
only), no Internet, TV, not even any direct car access. What one
will realize, only after a few days with none of the above, is that
the mere walks through the mythical forests or just sitting &
watching a sun-down (for instance), will help them start
rediscovering their inner center. The modern times with their
permanent stress & aggression city-life will start to
diffuse—and the more one will stay, the more they will not need
any daily connection to their life left behind. The
home made local dishes using 100% regional bio food, the fresh, unpolluted air are of course not to be ignored in the process of rediscovering oneself. We will try our best and offer also a vegetarian or vegan menu - despite the fact that in Transylvanian, people call the pig their favorite vegetable ;)
Those who think that there can be more to our health & wellness offer, we are happy to tell you that the region has a variety of activities to offer. Not only that our Dupa Gard Bio-Retreat is located in a national park (Parcul National Apuseni), but only 10 kilometers away starts a unique natural reservation (Scarita Belioara) with a variety of protected plants, amazing rock formations and mysterious caves. Given its generous scale (around 140 hectares) and the fact that the access is a bit concealed, the guests who decide to visit the reservation will discover a sea of silence ‘disturbed’ only by the breath-taking wildness; some of the plants found here are long gone from Europe, the variety of birds and butterflies can fascinate even the ones that are not experts in these fields. Another possibility is to visit the traditional blacksmith / carpenter: after crossing a suspended wooden – metal bridge, the guest will end up in a more remote part of our location (a small village lost in the forest). There, our traditional craftsman will demonstrate how the horses used to be shoed, how to stretch the metal edge over a cart’s wheel or how he (only) manually carves wood in order to make small furniture. Furthermore, the guests can visit the local monastery (national landmark), the 18th reclusive tiny church, the waterfall, the wooden washing machine and the water-mill, the Roman-way, the singing rocks etc. etc. Last, but not least, we can also organize a trip to Scarisoara-cave (Romania’s biggest underground glacier) or to Rosia Montana (a rainbow of religion diversity, a Roman dated site and Europe’s biggest gold & rare minerals reserve).
To sum it up, a holiday in our Retreat will be an unforgettable experience that will equally mix a nostalgia time-travel into the past (untouched customs and traditions), a wellness joy for the body & spirit and a nest for rediscovering the <joie de vivre> (cheerful enjoyment of life) in the simplest way possible = reconnecting to Mother – Nature. Of course, the local schnapps and the late bonfire dinners can also be an enhancer in this unique adventure.
Why would you support this project?
IDEOLOGY: you simply like the idea of this ecological & self-sustaining project that truly and constantly helps the little village of Posaga to preserve & promote its unique cultural heritage
COMMUNITY: we are NOT alone. Slowly, but steadily we are building a Community of which you will be an important part
GOODIES: with a good Karma & material luck-charms carefully chosen, prepared and sent via your way—you only need to reach out & order
How will we use the money if the project is successfully funded?
Depending on how much money we will manage to raise, there are various possibilities to really bring Dupa Gard to its finale—meaning close to being 100% ready to launch! Below the ascending steps / funding stages and their according money value:
MUST (starting with EURO 1000)
INTERIOR (4 doors, insulation, painting the walls)
BASIC KITCHEN (work-surface, sink, gas-oven, refrigerator)
BASIC furniture (table & chairs, 3 beds)
SHOULD (starting EURO 2500)
Further furnishings (cupboards for living-room, kitchen, bathroom & hall-way)
Rain-gutters + water-tank to collect the rain water
Consolidating the earth behind the house so everything remains safe & dry
COULD (starting EURO 4000)
All-terrain vehicle (ATV) for transporting up & down hill all the necessities
Build up / multiplying & improving our solar grid
Shaping up our Garden (planting trees / herbs / flowers, banks, fence etc.)
Roof solar grid to warm up the water inside the house
Terracotta fire place which will be able to warm (by recycling the hot air) the rooms
Establishing an additional source of water
PERFECT (whatever over EURO 10.000)
Expanding under the roof (extra sleeping possibility)
Open-air wood oven / open-air Summer kitchen
Renovating the traditional barn where we keep the tools
More tools + brewing beer system
Consolidating the access paths
Constructing our very own wine cellar (under the Earth cellar)
Who are the people behind the project?
The mother of this project is Ioana Joca- Pohl: trained journalist and experienced filmmaker, Ioana is - since Spring 2016 - also the mother of our little Dhalia. Between 2012 and 2015 Ioana passionately organized cultural and educational events in order to show and educate the participants about the traditional rural life in Transylvania (namely in the community of Poşaga). When it comes to films and Poşaga, it should be mentioned that Ioana’s first film (the documentary “the Grandparents”) won 2 BAFTA nominations (the perk called <JJ Films> Media Package ). Perhaps we should also mention that Ioana spent her first 5 years as child there- so Poşaga is for her an irreplaceable and inexhaustible spiritual oasis.
I, a.k.a. Andreas Pohl, am Dhalia’s father and Ioana’s man. Please consider me as charmed as Ioana is when it comes to Poşaga and its surroundings. This village-community, with its virgin forests and people living in an honest harmony with the pure nature, melted my heart the moment I got in contact with it. In between, Poşaga became a place of perpetual return and my little piece of heaven. Nowadays, my purpose and Ioana’s is to preserve– as much as it is realistically possible – what is left authentic of the community. This can, however, happen only with external support- in other words, with your help and the help of the future guests who will decide to honor us with their presence at După Gard Bio - Retreat.
Our daughter Dhalia is not only the project’s tiny mascot, but – most importantly- the guarding angel and the core motivation for everything. Time turns everybody and everything into dust; the important thing is that, as long as we are alive, we create a legacy that the generations to come can use and enjoy in a positive way. Our legacy and, simultaneously, the gift we have for Dhalia, is the project “După Gard” and all its perks, advantages and thrills it brings with it. We warmly wish the ones who decide to step into this life’s adventure to rediscover, better understand, improve and (for some) transcend themselves.