Articles written by Felicity Clarke:
Many thousands of Rio residents packed the beaches of South Zone last Wednesday November 20, Black Awareness Day and a public holiday in Rio state. However, some sunbathers who squeezed onto the sand to enjoy the scorching temperatures were victims of a series of robberies as opportunistic thieves took advantage of the dense holiday crowds. Municipal guards armed with batons confronted and apprehended several youngsters, and the military police made 12 arrests.
Last Sunday November 10 saw the launch of the Youth Marked to Live campaign (Juventude Marcada Para Viver), as part of Brazil’s Black Awareness Month, to reduce the homicide rate amongst black youth. For a full afternoon and evening, Parque Madureira in Rio’s North Zone played host to a packed cultural program including photography, passinho dance battle, story-telling, debate and musical performances by rapper BNegão and Northeastern rhythm group Maracutaia. The launch event is just the start of an extensive campaign conceived and realized by students of Observatório de Favelas’ Popular School for Critical Communication (ESPOCC) to raise awareness of the systematic More >
For the community of Varginha in Complexo de Manguinhos, a complex of favelas in Rio’s North Zone, the imminent visit of Pope Francis this week is a great honor. Pope Francis is in Rio for World Youth Day, his first international trip since his enthronement. Luiz Soares, 40, who has lived in Varginha since 1995, talks of how “a person who is famous and respected worldwide will walk on the same ground as we live,” comparing it to the great honor of Mother Teresa’s visit to the community in 1972.
On Tuesday afternoon, July 2, more than 5,000 people united in Maré, Rio’s largest favela complex located in the city’s North Zone, in memorial to the ten people slaughtered in the shocking police operation of last week and to demand an immediate end to this type of police operation, where police agents enter favelas and kill with impunity. Organized by Maré residents associations, NGOs, social movements and community groups, the event was designed to be encompassing of all faiths and backgrounds and was entitled “The State That Kills – Never Again.”
As the rain started to pour on Tuesday evening, May 28th, around 80 residents from the Horto community protested at the gates of Rio’s Jardim Botânico (Botanical Gardens) where the opening of world famous photographer Sebastião Salgado’s latest exhibition was taking place. Undeterred by the ensuing downpour, residents and supporters banged drums and held their banners high. “To brand as invaders the people who built this park is inhuman” read one held at the entrance to the famous visitor attraction.
The community of Horto can trace its history back to the 15th century sugarcane plantation that occupied the land before it More >