Learning outdoors for children of the favelas

by Instituto Sinal do Vale
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Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Learning outdoors for children of the favelas
Evando (left) during the workshop at SINAL
Evando (left) during the workshop at SINAL

We want to tell you a very special story for this report about Evando, a young community leader.

In our last report, we told you about our leadership training workshops for youth in peripheral communities who want to make a difference in their lives, and the lives of their neighbors. These workshops result in project proposals that have to do with sustainability, women empowerment and community development. 

In November of last year we met Evando, a wonderful young leader from the Baixada Fluminense - the peripheral area around Rio de Janeiro - who had been active trying to mobilize his community to work together to make it a better place to live. During the training he was very open and generous with the group, and actively participated brainstorming projects, discussing identity, culture and dialogue.

This year, Evando was chosen by the Active Citizens program of the British Council, to take a study trip to England! He travelled this month,  meeting other young leaders from different parts of the world and geting to know other similar projets being implemented there. 

While on his trip, he reached out to tell us how amazed he was with the experience and excited to be part of a network of young people trying to make a difference in the world through local actions. He told us there were many firsts that week: it was the first time he ever left the country, the first time he rode on a train, the first time he saw the snow, and the first time he got invited into a City Hall and was even awarded a gift by the Mayor. He had never had the opportunity to meet such a diverse cultural group, and was very inspired to see how we can all work together towards the same goal.

Evando is back in Brazil and working on a proposal to create a communal garden that will not only embellish the community, but also  incentivice teamwork and sustainable practices. We are incredibly happy and proud to see him grow and have lifechanging experiences.

A huge thank you to our donors who help us organize these events that allows to find opportunities for young people who want to make a difference, and to create a platform for them to take on a journey towards becoming Changemakers!

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Last year, we began a series of leadership workshops for youths in the periphery of Rio de Janeiro, in partnership with Active Citizens British Council. This month we began a new cycle training wonderful passionate leaders who work with vulnerable children. Through a series of games and challenges, we discussed the ideas of identity, dialogue and community dynamics to empower them to raise their voice and take actions in their communities to affect a positive change.

Taking advantage of the beautiful landscape surrounding SINAL, we integrated the characteristics of our spaces and the forest into the activities, believing that connecting with nature and feeling the calmness that it provides helped the participants to relax, feel more at home and in tune with each other. 

A big thank you to all our donors for helping us make events like this possible. Last year, our class of leaders ended up creating a project that impacted public policy in their community! we can't wait to see what this year will bring.

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Playing "hot potato" with an onion
Playing "hot potato" with an onion

Once a month until the end of the school year in december, we have been visiting the local public school of Hervalina Diniz to play a "gincana" with the children. Gincana is a brazilian term for a friendly competition that consists of creative games that score points across time until finally, the winning team gets a special prize.

In this case, we have developed a series of challenges for the kids to identify healthy food, how it is grown, and what could be done to grow it in a healthy way for the environment. The winning team will get the chance to go to a waterpark! 
The gincana was designed by Sinal staff and a nutricionist who specializes in teaching children healthy eating habits. 

The teams have been already divided into 3 big groups and the kids are very excited and participative - we are very happy and hope they will take this knowledge with them home to their families! this is an essential part of the success of the project.

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This week, the SINAL team together with a group of students from America painted a mural at the local school of Hervalina Diniz to inspire a love for their learning space, and for the Atlantic Forest that surrounds their community. 

The kids had an opportunity to learn about where the visiting students came from, how their hometown looks like, what types of food they eat, and even had an exchange of dance moves between America and Brazil!

During the painting sessions, the kids teamed up with the visiting students to paint endangered and notable animals they can find in the Atlantic Forest, such as jaguars, golden lion tamarins, sloths, etc. Here are some of the photos of the event.

Thank you for donating, we couldn't have organized this event without your help!

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Last year, SINAL began a partnership with the British Council through its Active Citizens program, a methodology designed to train young community leaders to approach subjects of identity, culture, dialogue and community, to empower them to take action improving their own communities. Since the last few months, we have received groups of passionate young leaders from different neighborhoods of the greater Baixada Fluminense area (the urban sprawl of Rio de Janeiro), which are characterized by precarious infrastructure, low-income and insecurity.

 Through the trainings, the youths designed their own projects which will have begun to be implemented and will continue in the next months with our accompaniment. Some of the projects are:

            Building a rain catching system for the local school to use in its organic garden beds project, (another one of our community projects). The kids will also build an exact scaled replica as the project moves along, as a special project in their Math class.

            Installing a series of recycling “eco-points” in the neighborhood of Santo Antonio, characterized by having one of the lowest waste-treatment infrastructures.

            The intervention of a garden in a local plaza, where a community event was held with capoeira and recycled art workshops for children. The goal was to clean an area that was full of garbage and was instead planted with crotolaria, a plant that attracts the dragonflies that eat mosquitoes that carry dengue fever.

 We will upload more photos of the projects as they unfold, for now, here are some of the photos from the project crotolaria!

 Thank you to all donors who helped us achieve this. It has truly been a journey seeing these kids grow more empowered, confident and responsible!

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Organization Information

Instituto Sinal do Vale

Location: Rio de Janeiro, RJ - Brazil
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Thais Corral
General Coordinator
Rio de Janeiro , Rio de Janeiro Brazil
$6,397 raised of $30,000 goal
80 donations
$23,603 to go
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