From 16 potential local public schools in the city of Araripina (Pernambuco, Brazil), we were glad to work with 10 of them who adhered to our Civic Engagement Program in 2020. Schools from both the state’s and the city’s educational network agreed on our revised scope of work that adapted our existing methodologies into the virtual environment (due to the limits and protocols that came as the direct consequences of the pandemic, including in education). The Civic Engagement Program, which took place from January until September 2020, and whose new scope started to be implemented from May on, was based on 3 main fronts: the “Online Communities” (Comunidades Online), the “Develop!” (Desenvolva!) and the facilitation of 3 methodologies in Civic Engagement.
Online Communities - The Online Communities reached a total of 105 students simultaneously at the end of June, which represented 7 schools. On September 25, at the end of the program, we had 70 students among 5 online communities. During 19 weeks the Online Communities debated more than 25 topics, among themes brought up by the Politiquê? team and ones suggested by the students themselves. Some of these topics led to online debates: 4 live debates were broadcasted with invited guests talking and with the indirect participation of students. From September 18th to 25th, 2020, we promoted the Mobilization Challenge of the Online Communities as the Program's closing activity. As a result, students were encouraged to share the “Develop!” projects on their own social networks. The winning group, that is, the one whose students shared the most in social media, was the Moisés Bom de Oliveira School - a school that also was the pilot for the program.
Develop! - 37 students registered for the Develop! program, representing 9 public schools in Araripina. Any student from any school inside our potential public in the city could apply for it, regardless of the school being our partner or not. Over 50% of the enrolled students were not part of the Online Communities, which means we managed to attract new students to our activities. In addition, 2 schools represented by the enrolled students were schools that didn’t adhere directly and formally to the Civic Engagement Program. This also represents that our reach went beyond what was agreed with the schools. All the projects were developed on a virtual basis with the students, and only the final project activity (delivery of raised items for the targeted publics) was made face-to-face, respecting all the health and security measures. By the end of the Develop!, 13 students were distributed among 3 projects:
- “The Awakening Project” (Projeto Despertar) - assistance to Santa Maria Hospital with hygiene materials and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to deal with the pandemic crisis. They delivered 17 diaper packs (of various sizes), 3 kits with cleaning products and more than 100 masks to the Hospital;
- “Youth on the Way to Solidarity Project” (Jovens a Caminho da Solidariedade - JOCS) - support to vulnerable families in “Cavalete” neighbourhood. It delivered 21 food parcels for 20 families.
- “Solidary Generation Project” (Geração Solidária) - raising items and food for homeless people in the city. 10 food parcels, 20 hygiene & cleaning kits and 26 packed lunches (set meals) were delivered by this project for people in need.
3 methodologies in Civic Engagement - We developed supplementary handouts and videos for the “Debate Clubs” (Clubes de Debate), “Politics Workshops” (Oficinas de Política) and “Student Associations” (Grêmios Estudantis), programs offered by Politiquê? for teachers and students from the 10 schools participating in the 2020’s program. All the materials can be found at our website in the following link: https://politique.org.br/engajamento/ (in Brazilian Portuguese language). We distributed 5 physical copies of the handouts of each of the 3 programs (total of 15 copies) both to the 2 secretariats of education (city and state), and to the 10 schools participating in the program. We also offered an online live session to facilitate and demonstrate the use of these materials for educators.
What’s next? - After the end of the Civic Engagement Program in September 2020, Politiquê? kickstarted a new phase focused on perpetuating the 8 years legacy of the organization in 2021. Currently, our resources are being used to maintain the current team until the end of the organization, develop audiovisual pieces of communication for content’s promotion, dissemination of our methodologies and materials, and telling the learnings, findings, results and history (and stories) we have been acquiring since 2013 to all interested public. This also means we are no longer running or creating new projects. Our focus, energy and assets, until the month of June 2021, will be used only to make sure Politiquê?’s legacy will last beyond the organization’s own existence. This is why we are no longer receiving donations from grants, sponsors or supporters, including deactivating our use of the GlobalGiving platform as a fundraising tool.
We thank everyone for all the work and help!