Archive for July, 2012
For original article in Portuguese on BBC Brasil click here.
On the elevator on his way up to Morro do Cantagalo, a favela wedged between Copacabana and Ipanema, the Indian writer Suketu Mehta marvels at the new ease-of-access and predicts that “in five or ten years many residents will no longer be able to afford the rent here.”
Mehta has seen the same thing happen in slums of Mumbai, where he grew up before leaving in his teens to live in the US. He returned 20 years later to find More >
“Many people see the end of us, but I see the start,” said Inalva Mendes Brito, a Vila Autódromo resident at last weekend’s meeting in the community’s quad. In their fight against eviction, the community of Vila Autódromo which lies on land adjacent to where the 2016 Olympic Park will be built, has teamed up with experts from two federal universities to create the Plano Popular da Vila Autódromo, an urban, social, economic and cultural development project for the community.
Taking into account all the issues, needs and legal requirements, the plan presents a wholly viable and economical alternative to the authority’s More >
A legacy of government neglect peeked through the joyful motions and colors of the traditional Festa Junina in Pica-Pau, Cordovil last month. The lack of public investment was most visible in descending houses, in a creek that stewed with the smell of sewerage, in informal water and electricity lines that snaked densely above and below. But one of the most toxic issues is represented by quieter exchanges of drugs on unpoliced corners. That afternoon in late June, the leaders of the Residents’ Association and Ministério Semear de Bras de Pina presented to us the tolls of drug abuse in their More >
In colorful, glittering style, Favela de Acari hosted its first Parada GLS de Acari (Gay, Lesbian and Gay-Friendly Parade) last Sunday with an estimated 8-10,000 people united in a carnivalesque celebration of diversity and tolerance.
With three rainbow balloon-adorned floats blasting funk, electronic dance and pop music, glamorous drag queens circulating the crowd and a special appearance by TV presenter David Brazil, the street party dominated the street opposite Acari/Fazenda Botafogo metro station from 2pm onwards. A festive atmosphere akin to the more raucous Carnival blocos prevailed as men, women and children in ‘No More Homophobia!’ t-shirts and LGBT residents from More >
We caught the 10 o’clock ferry to Niterói. The boat was maybe a quarter full, mostly families off to see their relatives on the other side of the bay on a Sunday. It was quiet as it was still early, the clouds from the night before still hanging over the water. On the other side, we met Ney Nunez de Souza, who picked us up in his car. Ney is one of the leaders of the Irmã Aracy House Rehabilitation Centre. He is a confident man who speaks directly and with purpose, rarely wasting words. Ney drives much as he talks, plowing straight ahead without hesitation More >