Entrepreneurs who throw themselves into the adventure to fulfill their dreams. Beatriz Carmena, testimony of Erasmus for Young entrepreneurs programme.

There are many enterprising people who, despite finding themselves in the situation we are in because of COVID-19, do not want to leave their dreams aside and want to continue fighting to achieve their goals. Beatriz Carmena is a young entrepreneur who, since July 6 is in Sao Pedro de Tomar, a small village in Portugal, where she found a company dedicated to tourism, Quinta do Troviscal, which could help her to take her business plan forward. After his first contacts with the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme and with our support, she met Vera Castelbranco, an experienced entrepreneur who is helping her to know how to manage a company also in times of crisis. 

Beatriz tells us her experience there.

"I didn’t know what to expect: in the middle of the Covid crisis, I decided to start working in Quinta do Troviscal, a rural touristic business in Portugal, I just knew that I wanted this experience. It is true that I thought that coronavirus would make the things more challenging, but everything was so easy with Vera and joining in her business was the best thing that I could do.

I was looking for a touristic organization which works for nature to thrive, and the first day that I arrived, Vera, my host, told me that it was needed to water ten trees that she planted in the way to Quinta do Troviscal, my new home. She showed me all the work that she did during 30 years and it was amazing; she created an ecosystem, full of flowers for bees. She was fighting against invasive plants, she was planting trees in her neighbour, she reforested an area which was burnt, even if it didn’t belong to her. I was amazed and right away I thought that I had to learn a lot from her incredible spirit.

I saw her, managing everything since the early morning, going up and down stairs working to have everything fixed for her clients. She taught me too many things related to tourism and to make the things possible in your own business. 

Our Daily job was preparing breakfast for our clients and cleaning the rooms and the common areas of Quinta do Troviscal. These tasks took some time in the morning, being free in the afternoon, so I spent that time working on my future project and relaxing.

If I had to choose some of the things that I learned, I would tell that if you want to work on your own, you have to be so careful and have everything controlled. You have to ask opinions of your project, what your clients need and what they would change, in order to improve every day. Vera cared so much about the impressions of her visitants, so she always asked them, and she always listened them to fix what it was wrong. The most of the organizations and people that I know don’t change even if they know what they have to improve, but she does and that’s why she is successful. 

The main thing that made me so happy here, was her environmental spirit. She tried to reuse everything, she chose to have a small business in order to assure silence and respect in her environment. She loves to hear birds and to see wild animals in her place, every single time that she founds garbage in the ground, she always throws it to the thrash can. She is a very conscientious person and I admire so much that from her.

In conclusion, I learned the importance of being active, productive and to be attentive in order to improve and grow as a business, but also the importance of enjoying life and be happy in our free time, which was incredibly easy with Vera.