Casa dos Curumins: life-changing projects01 October 2021
There are parts of the world where if you ask a kid what their biggest wish is, the answer would be “To have food at home”, “A doll”, or even “To see my mother happy”. These are wishes that most people could see as basic, essential even, but instead, they are larger than life and too often too difficult to fulfil.
To turn these dreams – and many other far more ambitious ones – into a reality, Adriana and Alberto Eisenhardt founded the association Casa dos Curumins in 2005, to help the youth of the Pedreira, one of São Paulo’s (Brasil) poorest neighborhoods.
IBSA has been proudly supporting all the several different projects by Casa dos Curumins for years: the nursery, the afterschool, the music academy and the band, the vocational courses, the creative atelier, the recreational projects for the elders and the scholarships.
All these initiatives are aimed at fostering a welcoming, inclusive and educative environment for about 500 children and teenagers, coming from a difficult social background. In addition, the Casa provides support to their families, and to over 100 elders, through to the distribution of food baskets, hot meals, personal hygiene products and face masks.
The Casa’s activities in 2021
In Brasil as well, just like in the rest of the world, 2021 was not a particularly kind nor easy year. In addition to exasperating the inherent economic and social inequalities, the pandemic situation caused the shutdown of schools and slowed down activities in general.
The limited, if not entirely non-existent, internet access has further penalised children and youngsters who, in addition to the loss of two years of public education, could not have access to the full meal usually offered in school canteens.
Despite all these challenges, Casa dos Curumins continued its activities. Unfortunately, only 25% of the 500 children were able to join after-school activities, but the Casa continued to distribute hot meals to all the others.
The music must go on (and what a beat!)
Music education is one of Casa’s flagships and despite it all, music kept being played in the Pedreira, bringing so much beauty and fulfilment, even in 2021!
The school is about to end a year of great successes: besides receiving several nominations for different Brazilian awards, on the 7th of November, it was awarded the best Brazilian musical educational project prize (Professional Music Award).
Not only music, but art and craftmanship as well
Atelier Pipilu continued with creative manual activities, canvas paintings, sewing classes and outsourced works. In a consistent effort to improve, 2022 will start with a more structured and professionalising sewing programme, and the production and sale of t-shirts and bags as a way to ensure steady income for both children and the association.
The atelier became a real social enabler, allowing children to express their personality and explore their talent. The kids here are listened to and educated to a profession, and by leveraging on their natural inclinations, they have the opportunity to take control of their own life.
Educating a child means changing everything
The Casa’s principles are as simple as the dreams of the children we mentioned earlier, and just as much empowering: the Casa’s impact is rooted into the transformative power of love, peace, non-violence, honesty, transparency, and truth, and in how we can live by example in our society.
As Adriana tells us: “Our mission is to encourage youth to step up and take the lead of their own life, providing personal and professional development opportunities to all the kids enrolled in the association’s different programmes. This is the key to shape citizens able to transform society, shifting the paradigm of life in suburban areas. I decided to dedicate my life to this project because I’m a witness of the transformative power that education, art and culture can have in young people’s lives, nurturing talents and capabilities that would otherwise get lost due to the lack of opportunities.”
Just like Adriana and Alberto, in IBSA too we are convinced that building a more fair and equitable world is possible. Each one of us can make a difference with small actions.
For example, to support the Casa’s projects, you can make a direct donation (full details on the Casa dos Curumins website) or buy a bottle of solidarity wine through Valsangiacomo Vini.