CEMINA (Com., Edu. and Info. and Adaptation)

CEMINA ( Communication, Education, Information and Adaptation) is a not- for- profit organization founded in 1990 to empower women and communities through the use of the radio. Over the years CEMINA has created 400 women's radio programs and has been awarded with various prizes. The radio model, created by CEMINA, is considered a social technology and has been disseminated not only in Brazil but in other countries as well. Since 2007, CEMINA has shifted its focus from radio to the capacity building for social start ups and education for adaptation to climate change. One of its main projects is Adapta Sertao ( www.adaptasertao.net) which aim is to develop a social technology that benefi...
Sep 7, 2016

Facing the challenges of reforestation

During the last few months, we have had to face many of the challenges that come with reforesation in the Mata Atlantica. But through the experience, we have learned lots and been able to continue progress despite it all.

Firstly, we did a plantation of 300 trees in the surrounding hills of an area called the Lake house. The steep slopes that surround the area are highly degraded and have been very difficult to reforest given their steepness. This type of topography is very common for the Mata Atlantica - this is why reforestation projects can be very expensive in this area because of the difficulty for reforestation teams to reach it. Through the help of many volunteers, local workers, children from the area, and a visit from undergrads from Harvard University (who did a one day learning journey at SINAL and helped plant), we were able to plant the 300 trees with over 30 species. 

 

Secondly, we were faced with the challenge of stray animals entering our property. Many neighbors let their horses and cows walk freely without fences - therefore, stray animals arrived on our land. This can be a threat because such animals will eat saplings when they are young and can cause problems for projects like ours. Luckily, we were able to track down the neighbors and explain the situation, and it ended up being positive as we were able to connect with more local ranchers and promote the positive aspects of reforestaion to them - many who know very little about it. 

 

Finally, a forest fire broke out on SINAL property last week. It started in the pasture lands, which is very common during the dry season, especially in the pastures of the African grass (an invasive species brought by the portugues that has taken over) which grows very tall and is highly flammable. The fire sadly reached part of the forested lands, though luckily our team was able to stop it from reaching the SINAL headquarters and one of the reforesation plots. However, we have decided to take the opportunity to form a local neighborhood fire brigade. The local fire department has trouble reaching the forests around our property therefore we must create our own form to prevent and fight fires. Forest fires are a huge problem in the Mata Atlantica and is essential to find solutions for them.

 

Thank you to all our donors for supporting our work. It can be a tough job - but every tree is worth it! 

Aug 19, 2016

Happy, healthy cats!

Tigrinho and another baby
Tigrinho and another baby

August was a very important month for the cats, as they had a visit from the local veterinarian, Bette! All the cats were given vaccinations. It was quite the process - given there are so many! But in the end, we were able to vaccinate them all. This is extremely important as they are all outdoor cats and live in the jungle (the Atlantic Rainforest) where there are lots of insects. Luckily, all of our cats are quite healthy but sometimes when new cats arrive, they can be a bit sickly. The vaccinations will prevent them from spreading any illnesses!

In this report, we have attached a photo of one of our most special cats, Tigrinho (which means little Tiger). Tigrinho was adopted by SINAL on the first day of 2016 when we found him and his 2 brothers on our doorstep. Someone had abonded the three babies. When they arrived, they were famished and exhausted... and scared of everyone. However, after 6 months of constant care and love from the SINAL staff, he has become the most loving and favorite cat. In fact, he takes care of the other kittens, playing and cuddling with them. He is definitely an example of when you adopt an animal, and show them total love and affection, they can be transformed. 

Aug 8, 2016

Julio Otoni, Soccer and the Olympic Torch

Youth chosen to run torch
Youth chosen to run torch

July was an exciting month for the community center due to the coming of the Olympics to Rio. Sports fever has hit!

Specifically, the children are participating in the British Council's Premeir Skills program, which seeks to empower young people between the ages of 10-18 to improve their communities through soccer and citizenship classes. Over 200 boys and girls participate in the program and are trained to be leaders in the community. What is very special about the program in Rio is that both police officers and local favela youth play on teams together as an effort to reduce tension and conflict between the groups. Both the officers and the youth begin to see one another as friends rather than enemies. Beyond soccer, the young people involved in the program also work to improve trash and recycling systems and revitalize degraded areas in the community. They learn how to be more engaged citizens - both through sports and through the citizenship classes.

On July 30, the community celebrated the wonderful acheivement of 62 days with no gang violence. The community came together to acknowledge the peace and the impact of the program on the young people. It has provided real alternatives to drugs and gangs and the community can see it. Moreover, one of the young men from the area was chosen to run with the Olympic torch due to his athletic accomplishments in sports. The entire community was extremely proud and honored him with a ceremony, as shown in the attached photos. 

Celebrating
Celebrating
62 days with no violence
62 days with no violence
 
   

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