The active collaboration of the parents during the first seven years allowed us to have a more mature project. In 1999, when we moved to another beautiful space in Catalão, 4kms from Barão de S. João, we started to ask ourselves a question: how could we find a solid structure, which would allow the project to survive through time?
We felt the need to create an Association. It was encouraging to know that even the parents whose children were no longer at the kindergarten wanted to participate. The purpose was to allow other children to have the same valuable education has their own children had had.
We worked a lot at that moment: prepared the first regulation and had it approved by the General Assembly, elected our first board of direction: Niels Rump, António Marcela and Eva Herre, supported by the votes of the founding members. Many other friends and volunteer parents have followed in the lists of the different boards of the association up to today.
At that time, the association contacted the Câmara Municipal de Lagos. It was with great joy and gratitude that we received the news that we had been given the premises of the former building of the Monte Judeu Primary School. We signed the protocol with the president of the Municipality, Mr. Valentim Rosado.
It was a beautiful space, surrounded by Nature, where our Kindergarten is installed to this day.
It was our responsibility to repair and adapt the building that we had been given. Until then the kindergarten had only survived from the payments from the parents.
The big challenge now was to find funding to pay for all the renovations needed. With the help of many parents, friends, teachers and other helping hands, we made it happen. Many decisions were needed in a short period of time: long meetings, finding funding solutions, choosing the right equipments, dealing with the bureaucracy in city hall, with the architect Mário Martins who was responsible for the project, and also with the builder.
Finally the first part of the project had started. We could finish the enlargement of the classroom (what is now Sala Alfazema), we built the kitchen, the multipurpose room, the office and the toilets.
At the same time we registered as IPSS (Instituição Particular de Solidariedade Particular). We were therefore licensed by the Social Security, signing a protocol with them. These brought new challenges and responsibilities.
We remember the precious help of Dra. Isabel Faustino, representing the Ministry of Education, who helped us hugely, so that our education Project could be approved.