It is with deep joy that we report about the recent developments of the project “Favela da Paz” in São Paulo, Brazil.
After a lot of work from our friends’ side, writing an application for ‘Lei Rouanet’ – a government law for the promotion of culture, which allows big Brazilian corporations to deduct a certain percentage of their income taxes and direct it for investment in culture – their application was approved!
This means they are now part of a very restricted list of artists who are allowed to ask for this corporate money. Applying for ‘Lei Rouanet’ is not an easy process; it takes a knowledgeable person to go through the whole bureaucratic process – for this reason, this list is solely comprised of top Brazilian artists. Luckily, our friends benefited from the support of such a person, which was moved by their work and had the wish to support.
The approved application unlocks approximately half a million euros, meant to take the 25 year old band ‘Poesia Samba Soul’ – the driving engine of Favela da Paz – to a whole new level of outreach (covering a tour through 10 different Brazilian states, CD and DVD production, and other band promotion costs).
Through this, also Favela da Paz will experience a new dimension of visibility and support, and will benefit from the improved financial situation.
The monthly event ‘Samba na 2’, organized by Favela da Paz, has recently turned into a cultural fair where, in addition to the famous gathering of samba artists, several selling booths were set up, where people can find local food and handcrafts. This is opening the doors for boosting the local economy and allowing the talents of the community to come out. Last ‘Samba na 2’ counted with approximately 1500 people, some of them coming from other states of Brazil!
The plans for building the new education/cultural center of Favela da Paz are moving on as well. Architects from the ELOS Institute are supporting with drawing and planning a proper building on the recently acquired land. They are now looking for bio-construction experts which can support with their knowledge!
Regarding the building plans for the Metro-Bus station, which if happening would threaten to displace thousands of people of the local community, there are unofficial positive developments. According to a leading figure of the local sub-prefecture, the building plan as it currently is, would imply too many costs. It will likely suffer alterations, so that it carries less financial costs and negative social impact. We will closely follow the updates.
Last but not least, it looks like our friends picked up on the vegetarian taste of our Global Campus month last year! Hellem, together with Dona Ana and Dona Rita – the incredible team that cooked for us during our stay – is delighting the taste of many people in the favela! Cooking delicious and creative vegetarian foods, they are often “on tour”, giving courses and supplying food for their new and curious fans. Now they dream about creating a vegetarian restaurant in the future education/cultural center of Favela da Paz!
We warmly greet our friends in Favela da Paz. We celebrate for the increasing outreach of their voices, and we congratulate them for their ongoing tireless work!