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Child Sponsorship Report from Jacarepagua, Brazil

Sponsored child from Jacarepagua
Sponsored child from Jacarepagua

A child sponsorship report from Jacarepagua in Brazil. Written in 2009.

Dear Sponsors and Child Sponsors,

It is with great satisfaction that we share with you the news about the Family-based Care and Community and Family Strengthening Programmes of Jacarepaguá SOS Children during 2009.

First, we have the great news that our youngsters were approved on the second phase of the selection process offered by a department store that participates in the Jovem Aprendiz Programme (Young Apprentice Programme). Soon, they will start working and in turn will receive a grant aid along with other benefits such as transport pass, health and dental care plans, vouchers and with great possibility that they may receive a formal job offer to become employees of this renowned company once they turn eighteen years old.

This achievement is the result of the work we developed with our youngsters which included a group approach in which several topics are discussed, never through lectures, but instead through games that enhance team play, group dynamics, educational and fun videos, short theater plays, and other creative ways to engage them.

The meetings are held weekly at a welcoming and informal place in an atmosphere that enables achieving excellent results. The youngsters are also encouraged to learn how to lead and then replicate this activity. The meetings also offer a lot of musical activities, where many other of their gifts and talents are brought to light.

On Saturdays, early in the morning, our teenagers get out the bed to go to Animare Project, which offers courses that helps young people to enter into the job market. At the end of each group, they do a closing party and invite some local store owners and industry representatives. During the party Animare Project team hands out youths’ résumé to the visitors.

Our teenagers are learning the importance to exercise solidarity. On Sundays, teenagers from SOS Children’s Village Jacarepaguá and Pedra Bonita get together to take part in solidarity project in Lixão de São Gonçalo, a poorish community where our teenagers can have the opportunity to help other people. Besides seeing a very precarious situation, youths can help some families with little donations or even talking to these families, encouraging them to look for a better future. Also our teenagers can realize they were able to rewrite their own lives, which make them stronger and confident that they are building a different and better future for them.

Festa da Roça

Early this semester, the youngsters meeting of Jacarepaguá, Pedra Bonita and Juiz de Fora Villages also took place at a ranch located in Vassouras, a small town close to Rio de Janeiro city. The place has an excellent structure and our youngsters together with the volunteers’ team could participate in several events such as lectures, games, entertainment. These activities have further enhanced in our youngsters a sense of belonging and solidarity.

Festa na Roça”, which means “Country Party”, was another highlight event which took place in August with the objective of further integrating the local community with the Family-based Care and Family Strengthening Programmes. In this party atmosphere, all participated together in several carnival-like games and activities while enjoying typical food to the sound of an enthusiastic DJ that would not stop playing “Forró” (typical rhythm for dancing).

Community and Family Strengthening Programme of Jacarepaguá has built the overcoming of issues into its DNA. We have lost the Jardim Bela Vista Community Centre at Campo Grande neighbourhood. Nevertheless, we gained a new Community Centre called Jardelina Dantas located in Duque de Caxias city, in the state of Rio de Janeiro. It is an organization formed with the objective of supporting the kids and families of the community, but it was about to loose its sponsorship. With our support and dedication, besides being able to maintain the sponsorship, the work performed became a reference among the community families. Although we have a lot of work ahead of us, we are very happy with the results achieved so far.

Children’s play

We have developed several activities for the families and children. One of them was the home visits, which has enabled us to understand all the key challenges they face on their day-to-day, directing the support and the strengthening of these families. Another initiative implemented was the “Family Month”, when several activities took place, from lectures to courses, workshops and tours with the children, culminating in a big “Family Party”, in which the children performed dances, theater and paid homage to all present. Our friends and co-workers were also present throughout these events. It really was a special day when we had several examples and testimonies of how important it was to participate since the events that took place made them reflect on the importance of the family. The children, their parents, friends and co-workers were very pleased.
Craft workshop.

As you can see, during this period several activities and events took place with the objective of further integrating the families and the community. We are proud of the results achieved.

Again, we would like to thank all of you for believing in and supporting this wonderful work that contributes so much to make our society better.