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An experience in the prevention of STD/AIDS among street
WEAVING NETWORKS
An experience in the prevention of STD/AIDS
among street boys and girls
BOARD AND STAFF
Prepared by
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
UNICEF Representative to Brazil
Marie-Pierre Poirier
Deputy UNICEF Representative to Brazil
Antonella Scolamiero
UNICEF TECHNICAL TEAM
Coordinated by
Cristina Albuquerque
UNICEF team
Alexandre Amorim, Carla Perdiz, Christianne
Moreira, Estela Caparelli, Jane Santos, Letícia
Sobreira and Luciana Phebo
UNICEF Consultants
Gabriela Goulart Mora and Ludmila Viegas
Office of the UNICEF Representative to Brazil
SEPN 510 – Bloco A – 2º- andar
Brasília, 70750-521
E-mail: [email protected]
Website: www.unicef.org.br
Text and Artwork
Coordinated by: Cross Content Comunicação
E-mail: [email protected]
Website: www.crosscontent.com.br
Coordinated and edited by: Andréia Peres
Text and press reports: Patrícia Andrade, Iracy
Paulina and Lilian Saback
Collaborator: Cláudia Aragón (Porto Alegre)
Translation: Master Language Traduções
e Interpretação Ltda.
Graphic design and artwork director:
José Dionísio Filho
Cover photograph: Sérgio Moraes
Photographs: J. R. Ripper, Nair Benedicto,
Ministry of Health – STD, Aids and Viral
Hepatitis Department and Secretary of
Health Surveillance
Minister of Health
Alexandre Padilha
Health Surveillance Secretary
Jarbas Barbosa
Director of the STD, Aids and Viral Hepatitis
Department
Dirceu Bartolomeu Greco
Technical Unit in Charge
Human Rights, Risk and Vulnerability (DHRV)
Coordinated by
Ivo Brito
Technical advisors responsible for
implementing/keeping track of the activities
of the Working Groups and projects
Magali Eleutério e Vânia Camargo da Costa
SAF Sul 02, Bloco F, Torre I,
Edifício Premium, térreo, sala 12
Brasília, 70070-600
Website: www.aids.gov.br
International Cataloguing in Publication Data (CIP)
(Brazilian Book Chamber, São Paulo, Brazil)
Weaving networks: An experience in the
prevention of STD/AIDS among street boys
and girls – Brasília, Federal District:
UNICEF, 2011.
Various collaborators.
Initiative of: STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis
Department of the Ministry of Health,
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
Bibliography.
Sérgio Moraes and Cláudio Rossi
ISBN: 978-85-87685-30-8
Image processing: Premedia Crop
1. AIDS (Disease) - Prevention 2. Social
assistance 3. Children and adolescents on
the streets - Brazil 4. Sexually transmitted
diseases – Prevention 5. Public policies
6. Social projects 7. Health - Promotion.
Acknowledgements
Many thanks to Ângela Donini, to the civil society organizations that were involved in the
experience in the four cities, to the state and municipal STD and AIDS program coordinating
boards in São Paulo/São Paulo, Bahia/Salvador, Rio de Janeiro/Rio de Janeiro and
Pernambuco/Recife. And, particularly, to the boys and girls who took part in this initiative
and collaborated so much to its success and learning.
This publication may be copied in whole or in part, provided that the source is mentioned.
11-09298 CDD-362.7086
Indices for systematic cataloguing:
1. Brazil: Health actions: Boys and girls on the
streets: STD/AIDS:
Prevention: Social well-being
362.7086
WEAVING NETWORKS
An experience in the prevention of STD/AIDS
among street boys and girls
Brasília, 2011
Introduction
Network initiatives ensure the continuity of actions
The need to develop
an actual network
in which street
children and
adolescents are
actively involved was
one of the guiding
principles of the
project from
the outset
Despite all the complexity involved in living on the streets, carrying out effective STD/AIDS prevention actions with street populations is possible.
Throughout this book, several – and positive – examples of initiatives of the
pilot Street Boys and Girls project will be provided to prove this.
The joint actions that were built involving government and civil society,
coupled with the experience of dealing with this population, the competence
of the health care and social work professionals involved in them, and the active role played by boys and girls on the streets showed that barriers can be
overcome. There was no lack of engagement, creativity and, above all, commitment to overcome the adversities encountered along this initiative.
As Angela Donini, one of the designers of the pilot project, recalls, the
idea from the outset was to establish a dialogue between reality and services,
local NGOs, and public-policy makers. The need to “weave” an actual network in which street children and adolescents are actively involved was one
of the guiding principles of the project from the outset.
With the participation of civil society organizations and government, the
process of setting up the project’s Working Groups deserves special mention.
Throughout the project, these groups were mutually supportive in their actions, discussed their difficulties and realigned their activities as necessary,
sharing responsibilities and actions.
Despite occasional disagreements and misunderstandings, inherent in the
relationship between the State and civil society, the existence of the Working
Groups contributed to add several points of view and to overcome conflicts.
The Ministry of Health has strengthened initiatives in behalf of street populations in several areas and, as a result, actions based on a macro policy designed
for them are now under way. There are also many and varied challenges to be
tackled. A major one is that of strengthening intra- and inter-sectoral approaches
effectively. Another one is that of extending this strategy to other capital cities.
The book Weaving Networks confirms a feeling that we had from the early stages
of the project: seeds were planted in fertile ground, or else they would not have borne
fruit. The Working Groups were able to make progress in consolidating the principles
of the Unified Health System (Sistema Único de Saúde – SUS). In reviewing this history, it could be clearly seen that insisting on building network initiatives is worthwhile,
as they provide appropriate conditions to guarantee the strategy’s continuity.
By sharing lessons learned, we hope to encourage other professionals to
improve and promote the access of street boys and girls to their basic rights.
Magali Eleutério and Vânia Camargo da Costa,
technical advisors responsible for implementing/keeping track
of the activities of the Working Groups and projects
A strategy that proved to be innovative
Brazil’s benchmark work in STD/AIDS prevention has become even more innovative as it removes the veil of invisibility from girls and boys on the streets.
With the aim of contributing to the dissemination of positive experiences, UNICEF supported, in partnership with the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis
Department of the Ministry of Health, this publication on prevention actions
carried out by the government and civil society in four capital cities: Rio de
Janeiro, São Paulo, Recife and Salvador.
The governmental and non-governmental institutions mentioned here had
the courage to clearly see the violations of rights suffered by these individuals and respond to a huge challenge using playful methodologies that bring
playing back to life, as well as the ability to reflect and dialogue. With a direct
impact on public policies, innovative approaches were developed through
intersectoral activities involving, mainly, the health and social care areas.
Weaving Networks shows how civil society organizations and different
spheres of government undertook a joint study to exchange experiences,
discuss the unique features of prevention actions with this population, and
ensure the inclusion of this topic in Brazil’s public-policy agenda at the municipal, state and federal levels.
This publication is the result of a detailed interview-based survey involving more than 120 experts and dozens of children and adolescents that
was carried out between October 2010 and January 2011. Relying on the
collaboration of educators involved in the project, its most successful workshops were replicated to ensure a more accurate record of the methodologies developed by it.
By documenting this joint work in this publication, UNICEF intends to
contribute toward strengthening and expanding this network, making it possible for more and more children and adolescents to enjoy their rights.
In the following pages, we share successes, challenges and lessons
learned in this journey, with the sure feeling that this experience will contribute to guarantee the continuity of such an important project in the abovementioned Brazilian cities and others.
Enjoy!
Marie-Pierre Poirier
UNICEF Representative to Brazil
With a direct
impact on public
policies, innovative
approaches were
developed through
intersectoral
activities involving,
mainly, the health
and social
care areas
Executive Summary
Weaving Networks – An Experience in the Prevention of STD/AIDS Among
Street Boys and Girls is the synthesis of an initiative that proved to be innovative: the pilot Street Boys and Girls (MMSR in Portuguese) project, proposed by then called National STD/AIDS Program of the Ministry of Health
(today the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department), along with the Technical Adolescent Health Unit (Área Técnica de Saúde do Adolescente) of
the Ministry of Health, which relied on the support from the United Nations
Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in some of its activities.
Since the late 1990s, the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department has
been supporting projects of non-governmental organizations engaged in actions designed to prevent STD/AIDS among street boys and girls, and in
2005 it began to focus more strongly on strengthening partnerships between
civil society and government in this area. Relying on the collaboration of
dozens of educators and children and adolescents, we provide, in this book,
an account of the most successful workshops of the project that were held
in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Recife.
Divided into five chapters, this publication explores the key practices of
the pilot project, without forgetting to mention the challenges and successes
of this experience.
PE
BA
The project on a map
Implemented in four capital cities, the pilot project
trained hundreds of professionals, encouraged
networking, and secured major achievements, such
as the inclusion of STD/AIDS prevention among street
boys and girls in Brazil’s public policy agenda and
in the agenda of social organizations.
SP
•
RJ
• Salvador
•• Rio de Janeiro
São Paulo
• Recife
The first chapter of this book discusses who these street children and
adolescents vulnerable to STD/AIDS are and how many of them exist, mentioning experts on the subject.
The second chapter, called A puzzle with many challenges, describes the
methodology and main concepts of the project, which creatively managed to
bring together the pieces of a puzzle (civil society organizations, governmental
actors at the municipal, state and federal levels) to reduce the vulnerability of
children, adolescents and youths on the streets to STD/AIDS.
Challenges were also part of the process and they were told – and addressed – by street boys and girls on the streets and dozens of professionals
in different areas who took part in the Working Groups set up by the pilot
project. The chapter Multiple barriers describes difficulties faced to refer
these children and adolescents to health care services, strategies to facilitate
this access, and the need to network and adopt public policies that consider
them in their entirety.
The chapter Main achievements provides an account of the main successes of the MMSR pilot project in ensuring the rights of street children and
adolescents. According to members of the working groups in the four cities,
the project improved the lives of these boys and girls remarkably, apart from
having strengthened the relations between civil society and government and
from including STD/AIDS prevention actions in Brazil’s public policy agenda
and in the agenda of social organizations.
In the Annexes section, we provide a list of suggested books, videos and
links to websites and a summary of recommendations and reflections of more
than 120 experts interviewed for this publication.
Like the pilot project, this book was built based on a “networked approach.”
Children and adolescents suggested topics, sang their own songs, and shared
dreams and drawings with us which can be seen throughout the book. Shown
in photographs taken in capoeira and computer classes and as they engaged in
different artistic activities contemplated in the art-based education methodology
of the pilot project, these boys and girls took an active part in both the project
and the publication.
Educators, sociologists, psychologists, and health and social care professionals also played a part in building this network by sharing not only their
teachings, but also their distresses and challenges.
Each chapter also contains some special panels shown successful activities
and practices of the Working Groups in the four cities. Obviously, there are no
ready-made formulas for success in this area, but we believe that these experiences can be useful to other cities, states or countries in their efforts to prevent
STD/AIDS among street children and adolescents and to ensure their rights.
Street boys
and girls took
an active part
in both the
project and the
publication
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
Photograph: Cláudio Rossi
Table of Contents
10
26
CONTEXT
Concept and methodology
Educators have been
warning about rising rates
of vulnerability to STD/AIDS
among adolescents on the
streets. There are, however,
few records and information
about this population in Latin
America, and even less about
those living with HIV/AIDS
This is a project of the STD, AIDS and
Viral Hepatitis Department of the
Ministry of Health which brings together
many pieces (civil society organizations,
different government spheres and
actors) with the aim of reducing
vulnerability to STD/AIDS among street
children, adolescents and youths
A puzzle with
many challenges
High vulnerability
Photograph: Cláudio Rossi
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Panels
18 E
xtended network The workshop of the
Making My History (Fazendo a Minha
História) project contributes to STD/AIDS
prevention actions in São Paulo
34 C
ulture and prevention Teachers of the
Casa Taiguara shelter in São Paulo
teach ballet, capoeira and other
arts and also talk with children and
adolescents about STD/AIDS
42 T
he story of each and every one
Educators of the If This Street Were
Mine Project in Rio de Janeiro create a
cartoon story to talk about love and sex
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
60
124
Multiple barriers
ADVANCES
Main achievements
ANNEXES
Networking and
embracing policies that
can see street children
and adolescents in their
entirety were some of
the main challenges
faced by the project in
the cities in which it was
implemented
In its progressive efforts to
ensure the rights of street
children and adolescents,
the project secured major
achievements, such as the
inclusion STD/AIDS prevention
measures in the public policy
agenda and in the agenda of
social organizations
Suggested books,
websites and videos,
along with a summary
of recommendations
and reflections that
can be useful in
dealing with STD/
AIDS among street
boys and girls
Useful tools
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
CHALLENGES
94
68 O
rganization and planning
In Salvador, creating the “job”
of executive secretary is one of the
project’s best practices
72 P
ossibility of being treated at a health
facility without showing ID documents
Salvador developed creative strategies
to ensure the provision of health care
services to its homeless population
82 P
rotagonism and cinema In Recife,
the NGO Pé no Chão strengthened the
STD/AIDS prevention work by producing
documentaries that are shown outdoors
102 C
aptains of the Sand A team set
up by the Municipal Health Secretariat
is one of the achievements of the
Salvador Working Group
112 A
creative and playful activity
Workshop opens up dialogue on
sexuality and STD/AIDS in São Paulo
118 C
ondom in my head This project of the
NGO Excola of Rio de Janeiro stresses the
importance of not forgetting to use a condom
122 Conversation Circle
In Recife, this group dynamic has been
successful with street boys and girls
140 Exchanging experiences
South-South Cooperation
(Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia and Peru)
strengthens domestic responses
and allows for joint strategies
to be developed
142 Useful links
144 Bibliography
Photograph: Cláudio Rossi
At the Casa
Taiguara shelter in
São Paulo, reading
opens the doors
for children to talk
about their lives
BACKGROUND
High vulnerability
Photograph: Cláudio Rossi
A recent study on sexual behavior involving 161 street
adolescents in the city of Porto Alegre revealed worrying
data: 9.1% of the respondents had tested positive for
HIV* and 9.5% of those who had had sex reported that
they had had a sexually transmitted disease in the
preceding one-year period
A child taking part in an activity shows a mask it made to talk about its fears
* Of the 161 adolescents, 66 (41%) had been tested for HIV.
{ 12 } We av i n g N e t w o r k s
Who are these street children and adolescents and how many of them
are there in Brazil? What is the incidence of HIV/AIDS in this population?
These are questions for which we have no answers. “We still face major
difficulties in measuring this phenomenon,” recognizes sociologist Irene
Rizzini, President of the International Center for Studies and Research on
Children (Ciespi) and a leading expert on the subject in Brazil. According
to her, there are even different views on how to define and count street
children and adolescents. According to several recent studies, for example,
only those who sleep on the streets fall under the category of street children and adolescents, and not others, even if they spend whole days there.
Between 2000 and 2009, Ciespi only identified 13 quantitative surveys of
street children and adolescents. These are very hard to come by, and those
available are highly fragmented.
Difficulties range from
concepts to counting methods
There are
divergent views
on how to
define and count
children and
adolescents on
the streets
Concepts vary from one researcher to another and from one place to another. According to social worker Juliana Alves de Oliveira, one of the authors of the publication Censo da Exclusão ou Falta de Inclusão nos Censos?
(Exclusion census or lack of inclusion in censuses?),1 all the Brazilian cities
that contributed data to the report adopted one or more different definitions
for street children and adolescents. In two surveys conducted in Fortaleza
(in 2007 and 2008), for example, the concept varied from children and adolescents who “sleep out at least two days and two nights and keep interrupted or weak family ties” in 2007 to those who “cut off their family ties
completely and for whom the streets have become their home” in 2008. In
the city of Joao Pessoa (2008), in turn, the concept is more comprehensive:
it comprises children who spend most of their days and nights on the streets
in search of shelter, income, adventure, with or without family ties, unaccompanied or accompanied by adults, relatives or guardians.
The first theoretical concepts on this population emerged at the start of
the 1990s, when the results of a study conducted by the American Mark Lusk
in Rio de Janeiro, for which he interviewed 113 children and adolescents,
were published. According to the author, a standard definition of the term
was lacking in the literature, which in his opinion led the number of children and adolescents actually on the streets to be overestimated.
1 This publication was used as source in a survey carried out by Ciespi with the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio). Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
B ackground
Street
adolescent
in Salvador
{ 13 }
Copy/Childhope
In a workshop held by
the NGP Childhope
in Rio de Janeiro,
adolescents on the streets
recreated the Brazilian
flag in their own way
{ 16 } We av i n g N e t w o r k s
In his study, Lusk used the definition adopted by the United Nations2 and
subdivided the population he observed on the streets into four groups,
including the so-called street workers (independent and with family ties),
children who spent the whole day on the streets with their families, and
children who no longer had any family ties.
Throughout the 1990s, this kind of work in Brazil focused on two groups: “street
children” (crianças de rua) and “children on the streets” (crianças na rua). The socalled “street children” were those who had severed their family ties and were literally
living on and off the streets. “Children on the streets” were those who kept family
ties and spent time on the streets working, playing, and engaging in other activities.
2 Any boy or girl for whom the street (in the widest sense of the word, including unoccupied dwellings, wasteland, etc.) has become his or her
habitual abode and/or source of livelihood, and who is inadequately protected, directed, and supervised by responsible adults. In Vida nas
Ruas, coordinated by Irene Rizzini, PUC-Rio and Edições Loyola publishing house, 2003.
A history of exclusion
The concept and
characteristics
attributed to this
population are
as different as
its headcount
Since the colonial days, children could be seen wandering
on the streets of Brazil, but the term “on the streets” is recent
There are reports of children wandering
According to the authors, “Brazil has
around on the streets of Rio de Janeiro since
a long tradition of institutionalizing chil-
the colonial period. It is therefore very dif-
dren and adolescents in shelter homes.”
ficult, according to Antonio Reguete Mon-
They recall that this practice began in
teiro de Souza, the author of a master’s the-
Brazil’s colonial days, based on the Jesu-
sis on social work submitted to the Catholic
its’ educational model. In the eighteenth
University of Rio de Janeiro, to talk about
century, the Holy House of Mercy created
the first records of this phenomenon.
the so-called Roda de Expostos system to
In A Institucionalização de Crianças
shelter abandoned babies. The first edu-
no Brasil – Percursos Históricos e Desa-
cational institutions for orphans date from
fios do Presente (Institutionalization of
the same period (eighteenth century) and
children in Brazil – historical paths and
were established in several Brazilian cities
current challenges, PUC-Rio publishing
by religious organizations.
house, Loyola, 2004), Irene Rizzini and
The “on the streets” concept that is
Irma Rizzini provide a detailed account
used nowadays, however, is recent. It
of the assistance provided to children on
dates from the late twentieth century and
the streets and abandoned from the co-
has no direct parallel in the past, accord-
lonial period to the present.
ing to Antonio de Souza.
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
B ackground
Children engaged
in a Captains of
the Sands activity
in Salvador
Today, however, a consensus has been reached among experts that this scenario does not reflect the reality. “It is a very dynamic situation,” explains Lucas
Neiva-Silva, a Ph.D. in Psychology from the Federal University of Rio Grande do
Sul and a researcher at the Center for Psychological Studies on Street Boys and
Girls. “We have kids who severed their family ties completely, others who sleep
at home every night, and many others between these two extremes,” he says. “In
some cases, they have a fight at home, leave their family and live on the streets
for a period of their lives, but eventually they return to their homes and develop
closer ties with their family. They sleep one night at home, another one on the
streets or stay at home for three days and another five on the streets,” he explains.
The progress made in research on the subject has shown that knowing the
life trajectory of the children or adolescents is the key to understanding their relationship with the streets, i.e. no single factor, regardless of its importance, such
as their family or poverty status, can explain the complexity of the phenomenon.
According to the publication Crianças e Adolescentes com Direitos Violados
(Children and adolescents with violated rights),3 recognizing children and adolescents as subjects of rights in accordance with the Statute on Children and Adolescents
(1990) sets the prerogative that their own references are what matters for building
their biography. “On the streets” is the term that best reflects this perspective. The
streets are a major reference in the lives of these children and adolescents. However,
they have great mobility. They move from their home to the streets, shelters, transition houses, detention centers and back to the streets. “Instead of saying ‘I’m going
home today,’ they say ‘I’m going back to the streets.’ This is the reference that has
been allowed to take hold in this country for many children,” says Irene Rizzini.
3 Irene Rizzini, Paula Caldeira, Rosa Ribeiro and Luiz Marcelo Carvano, 2010, Ciespi and PUC-Rio.
{ 17 }
{ 18 } We av i n g N e t w o r k s
Extended network
A workshop of the project Fazendo Minha História (Making My Own
History) contributes to STD/AIDS prevention actions in São Paulo
Initially, the only common element be-
ing to psychoeducator Vicente Almeida
tween the Making My Own History and
dos Santos Jr., coordinator of the Tai-
the Tangram projects, implemented in
guara and Taiguarinha shelters, while the
São Paulo, was their target audience. i.e.
Tangram project “prepares children and
children and adolescents on the streets.
adolescents for life,” the Making My Own
As time went by, however, the two proj-
History project “makes them more open
ects developed closer links between
to talk and mingle with the community.”
them and today the boys and girls themselves associate one with the other.
Psychologist
encourages children
to talk about their
fears through
children’s books
Photographs: Cláudio Rossi
Mahyra Costivelli
“Through storytelling, they talk about
their fears, memories, projects...,” says
It is a consensus among educators that
Mahyra Costivelli, a psychologist and
both of them promote self-knowledge,
technical advisor to the project. “When
self-esteem, and self-worth, key ingredi-
you tell your story to someone, you give
ents for successful prevention actions.
new meanings to it,” she added.
The Making My Own History project
The project activities are varied and
was designed to provide a means for ev-
targeted to children and adolescents in
ery child and adolescent living in shelters
specific age brackets. We watched two
to express themselves, get in touch with
of these activities, one with children and
their own life story, and record it. Accord-
another one with adolescents.
p
B ackground
{ 19 }
{ 20 } We av i n g N e t w o r k s
After hearing the stories, the two make
self and talks about the project with
paper masks representing fear. Mikael* says
Vinicius*, a 7-year-old boy, and Mi-
he is afraid of dinosaurs because they can
kael*, who is 9 years old. Books are scat-
rip your neck apart and Vinicius* says he
tered on the floor. The first two stories
is afraid of vampires. In his real life, he is
(Witch, Witch, Come to My Party and
afraid of his older brother, who beats him.
Yellow Riding Hood)1 were chosen by
For the teenagers at the Casa Tai-
Mahyra. The other ones were chosen
guara shelter, the activity also begins
by the children themselves: A Monster
with storytelling. Mahyra reads The
Under my Bed, The Son of Grufalo and
Empty Pot and Belinda, the Ballerina.3
The True Story of the Three Little Pigs.2
The idea is using books to promote a re-
Reading is the starting point for chil-
flection on the future, on how they want
dren to talk about their fears. “I’m afraid
their lives to be when they are 25 years
of dying,” the two acknowledge, “I think
old, so that they can write about it.
dying hurts,” said Vinicius,* who thought
William, 15, says he’s terrified of AIDS
he was going to die when he was “almost”
and that “of course” he protects himself
shot in the foot in the community where
from it. To prove that he’s telling the truth,
he lived with his mother.
he says jokingly that he always sends his
1 Bruxa, Bruxa, Venha a Minha Festa, by Arden Druce, Brinque-Book
publishing house; Chapeuzinho Amarelo, by Chico Buarque,
José Olympio Editora publishing house.
2 Um Monstro Debaixo da Cama, by Angelika Glitz and Imke
Sönnichsen, Martins Fontes publishing house, O Filho do Grúfalo,
by Monika Feth and Antoni Boratynski, Brinque-Book publishing
house; A Verdadeira História dos Três Porquinhos, by John
Scieszka, Companhia das Letrinhas publishing house.
girlfriends to a clinic to be tested before
he starts dating them. A cocaine user, he
was institutionalized thrice at Fundação
3 O
Pote Vazio, by Demi, Martins Fontes
publishing house; Belinda, a Bailarina, by Amy Young,
Ática publishing house.
A model of
a project
activity: each
child talks
about himself
through a
self-portrait
Publicity material/Making My Own History
The project
activities are
varied and targeted
to children and
adolescents in
specific age
brackets
p Mahyra Costivelli introduces her-
{ 21 }
B ackground
Casa, a juvenile correctional facility for-
the boys and girls into two groups. One
merly known as FEBEM. His mother has
would defend sex in adolescence and the
psychiatric problems and his grandmoth-
other would be against it,” Mahyra says.
er cannot take care of him any longer. In
In the end, there was no judgment of
the future, he says he wants to go back to
right and wrong, she said, but rather a re-
school and play soccer there.
flection on the inputs provided by each
Carlos,* 17, came from Salvador to try
group: the importance of taking care of
and make a living in São Paulo. He start-
oneself and others, teenage pregnancy,
ed using drugs and lived on the streets
and the rights issue. “It’s hard to talk about
for 11 months. In the future, he says he
oneself, about how each one deals with
wants to be an Axé music dancer and go
sexuality, but it’s easy to talk about general
back to Salvador. The adolescent partici-
matters: what I think about girls and boys
pates in the activity and writes about his
having sex or not,” says Claudia Vidigal,
future like the others, but he does not
who is also a psychologist and president of
show what he wrote to anyone.
the Fazendo História Institute, the entity
One of the activities of the Making My
responsible for the project. In Claudia’s
Own History project that was particularly
opinion, the Making My Own History and
successful among the adolescents staying
Tangram projects were combined because
at the Casa Taiguara shelter was related
both of them offer the same thing: oppor-
to sexuality. “We saw that they needed to
tunities for children and adolescents to
talk about it. We then came up with the
take a look at and protect themselves ac-
idea of role-playing a court trial. We split
cording to their assumptions in life.
Photographs: Cláudio Rossi
* The names were changed to protect the identity of the children and adolescents.
William*, 15, writes a letter to his
grandmother. Engaged in a project
activity, he admits that he is afraid of
AIDS and says he wants to change his life
{ 22 } We av i n g N e t w o r k s
There are few
records and
information about
this population
in Latin America
and even less
about those living
with HIV/AIDS
The concept and characteristics attributed to this population are as different as its headcount, and as a result, according to the researcher, it is impossible to measure the phenomenon appropriately and it is difficult to draw up
clear proposals for actions to address and prevent it.
The first National Census Survey of Children and Adolescents on the Streets
was completed in 20104. It was carried out by the Sustainable Development Institute
(Idestam/Meta), at the initiative of the Human Rights Secretariat and the National
Council for the Rights of Children and Adolescents (Conanda). The survey identified
around 24,000 street children and adolescents. Most of them are male and one-third
reported that they had been institutionalized. The most frequent reasons that they
mentioned for living on the streets are related to rights violations at home: fighting,
physical violence, sexual abuse, loss of the family home, and unemployment.
4 In Direitos Humanos de Crianças e Adolescentes – 20 anos do Estatuto, Human Rights Secretariat in partnership with Ciespi and PUC-Rio, 2010. Alcohol and drug abuse and
street children and adolescents
For over 20 years, surveys have shown a high drug
abuse rate among boys and girls on the streets
Since 1987, the Brazilian Center for In-
and cannabis the percentages were
formation on Psychotropic Drugs (Ce-
16.3% and 11.2%, respectively.1
brid) has been carrying out systematic
According to Ana Noto, one of the
surveys of street children and adoles-
coordinators of the National Survey
cents in some Brazilian capital cities.
of Drug Abuse Among Street Children
In 2003, a national study was conduct-
and Adolescents in 27 Brazilian capital
ed for the first time. A high drug abuse
cities, intense use of solvents was ob-
rate was observed in this population in
served in all surveys. Glue and thin-
all years and every capital city.
ner were the predominant solvents.
Tobacco, cannabis and solvents
were seen to be the most frequently
used drugs (daily use). Daily tobacco
consumption was reported by 29.5%
of the young people, while for solvents
1 A
rticle “Uso de Drogas entre Crianças e Adolescentes em
Situação de Rua nas Capitais Brasileiras”, by Ana Regina
Noto, posted at http://www.antidrogas.com.br/mostraartigo.
php?c=410 and Levantamento Nacional sobre o Uso de Drogas
entre Crianças e Adolescentes em Situação de Rua nas
27 Capitais Brasileiras, 2003, Brazilian Center for Information
on Psychotropic Drugs (Cebrid).
B ackground
STD/AIDS incidence on the streets
According to the report Respondendo às Vulnerabilidades de Jovens em Situação de Rua ao HIV/aids: a Cooperação Sul-Sul como Eixo de Articulação
(Responding to the Vulnerabilities of Youths on the Streets to HIV/AIDS:
South-South Cooperation as an Axis), prepared in partnership with UNICEF, there are few records and information about this population in Latin
America and even less about those living with HIV/AIDS.
Educators have been warning about increased vulnerability to STD/AIDS
on the streets. According to them, because of its connections to drug abuse,
trading sex for money or even for drugs has become very common, as well as
the spread of the virus. Sociologist Irene Rizzini believes that this association
has become much stronger as a result of the crack phenomenon, which was
not present in past decades. However, no statistics are available for the extent
of the problem.
Consumption of cocaine, crack and/or
said that they had consumed alcohol
honey (locally known as merla), albeit
at least once in the month preceding
experimental, was reported in all Bra-
the survey at a rate ranging from 1 to 19
zilian capital cities.
days/month.
Daily consumption of alcoholic
Although they were not considered
beverages was reported by 3% of the
in the surveys, difficulties to refer drug
respondents, but 43% of all youths
and alcohol users to clinics for treatment of addiction and other health
problems were mentioned in all the
surveyed cities. When asked about attempts to quit or cut down on a drug,
only 0.7% of respondents reported that
they had resorted to health care services for this purpose. “There is a huge
need for a social network that works,”
concludes Ana Noto.
The full text of the survey
is available for download at
www.cebrid.epm.br, in the
books (livros) section
{ 23 }
{ 24 } We av i n g N e t w o r k s
The belief that
“this will never
happen to me”
also increases
risky sexual
behaviors
The only available survey5 is one of the adult population on the streets
(people over 18 years old), and its data are worrying. While the prevalence
of AIDS in the general population is 0.61%, it soars to 5.1% for street adults.6
A recent study7 on risky sexual behaviors involving 161 street adolescents
in Porto Alegre city revealed even more worrying results: 9.1% of the participants had tested positive for HIV. Among those who had had sex, it was also
found that 9.5% had had a sexually transmitted disease in the preceding oneyear period and that the condom use rate was low (26.3%).
Data on their sex life also deserves attention: in average, they have their
first intercourse at the age of 13 and 4.8% of those interviewed in the 2010 study
8 reported that their first intercourse had been forced. The number of reported
partners is higher than observed in behavioral surveys of the population at large9:
in average, 11 casual sex partners in the one-year period preceding the survey.
According to the researcher, believing that “this will never happen to me”
also increases risky sexual behaviors. “We ask them why they use a condom or
not, and most of those who don’t use it say that they have a regular partner and
trust him or her. The answers provided by street boys are the same as those usually provided by other middle-class teenagers or adults,” the psychologist observes.
According to Lucas Neiva, the profile of boys and girls on the streets has changed.
“Today, more children and adolescents are severing their family ties” he says. And this
Copy/Quixote Project
increases their vulnerability to alcohol and other drugs, as well as to unprotected sex.
In the researcher’s experience, this severing of family ties and the number of years
spent on the streets are determinants, for example, of crack cocaine abuse. “The more
years they spend on the streets, the greater their chances of starting to use crack and
of risky behaviors,” he says. According to data collected in the city of Porto Alegre, 10
Teen draws a
the probability of starting to use crack for a child who does not live with its family and
superhero as
has been on the streets for more than six years for over 8 hours a day is 99.8%. But
“invincible” as him
when the children enjoy a more protected situation (when they live with their family
and have been on the streets for six months for about 2 hours a day), the percentage
chance of starting to use crack is 2.1%. “Considering only this variable, i.e. the number
5 T
he national census survey and sampling survey of the street population carried out in 2007 by the Ministry of Social Development and
Hunger Combat. It covered 71 municipalities, 23 of which were capital cities and 48 were cities with populations of 300,000 or more. The
database that was used for selecting them was the DATASUS, 2004.
6 A
bout 30% of the respondents reported a health problem. The most common ones were the following: high blood pressure (10.1%),
psychiatric/mental problems (6.1%) and HIV/AIDS (5.1%).
7 Carvalho, Neiva-Silva, Ramos, Evans, Koller, Piccinini and Page-Shafer, 2006, in Estudo Comportamental com Crianças e Adolescentes em
Situação de Rua em Porto Alegre e Rio Grande, 2010.
8 Estudo Comportamental com Crianças e Adolescentes em Situação de Rua em Porto Alegre e Rio Grande, 2010.
9 P
esquisa de Conhecimentos, Atitudes e Práticas Relacionadas às DST e Aids da População Brasileira de 15 a 64 anos (PCAP), 2008, available
at www.aids.gov.br.
10 P
esquisa Uso de Drogas entre Crianças e Adolescentes em Situação de Rua: Um Estudo Longitudinal, doctoral dissertation by Neiva-Silva, L.
(2008), Psychology Institute of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul.
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
B ackground
Street adolescents
talk about love
and sex through
drawings at the
NGO Pé no Chão,
in Recife
of hours spent on the streets, one can appreciate the importance of the work of government or non-government institutions that provide services to the street population.
Instead of staying on the streets for 8 hours, they will stay there for only 4 hours. A significant reduction in crack use can be secured just by changing this variable,” he says.
Living conditions
From a macro viewpoint, we cannot, according to Irene Rizzini, separate the streets
from poverty and lack of money. It is estimated that 46% of the population in the
0-6 age bracket is below the poverty line in Brazil, which according to the sociologist should not be seen as an income problem, but rather as one of lack of access
to basic rights. These children live in places that are more vulnerable in many
ways. Housing and sanitation are inadequate and the risks to their lives and health
from pregnancy are also very high. The sociologist believes that these are environments that favor the “sprouting” of children and adolescents who will end up
“without a place in the world,” which is how she has categorized this population.
For all of these reasons, any STD/AIDS prevention measure only makes sense
when the idea behind it is that of promoting full rights. “The human rights of children and adolescents are both the starting and ending point. They should permeate and guide all the actions,” says Marcia Acioli, policy adviser for the rights of
children and adolescents to the Institute for Socioeconomic Studies (Inesc).
To tackle the problem effectively, increasingly complex interventions are necessary in different areas, ranging from a focus on the family to conflict management. The experience of the pilot Street Boys and Girls (MMSR) project of the
STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department of the Ministry of Health, which will be
described in detail over the next few chapters, constitutes a major contribution for
this purpose. It provides an example that civil society and government can – and
should – join forces to ensure the rights of children and adolescents on the streets.
{ 25 }
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
Activity with
street boys and
girls in Rio
de Janeiro
Concept and methodology
A puzzle with
many challenges
Publicity material/Quixote Project
With its many possibilities, the Tangram, an ancient
Chinese game, gave name to a project to prevent
HIV/AIDS and other Sexually Transmitted Diseases
(STDs) among boys and girls on the streets in São
Paulo. The puzzle synthesizes, in a playful way,
the methodology that was developed to address
this issue not only in the state capital of São
Paulo, but also in three other Brazilian capital
cities: Rio de Janeiro, Recife and Salvador
Sexuality Dominoes: STD/AIDS prevention in the form of a game
{ 28 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
As in the game, in which seven pieces of a square can be rearranged to form many
different figures, the pilot Street Boys and Girls project was designed to bring different pieces together (civil society organizations, different municipal, state and
federal spheres and actors) to reduce vulnerability to STDs and AIDS among children, adolescents and youths on the streets. The initiative was proposed by then
National STD/AIDS Program of the Ministry of Health (now called STD, AIDS and
Viral Hepatitis Department), along with the Technical Adolescent Health Unit (Área
Técnica de Saúde do Adolescente) of the Ministry of Health, and implemented
under a partnership arrangement with state and municipal STD/AIDS programs.
Since the late 1990s, the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department has been
supporting projects of nongovernmental organizations engaged in actions designed
to prevent STD/AIDS among street boys and girls. An important action was carried
in 2003 jointly with the National Movement of Street Boys and Girls (MNMMR) in
Since the late 1990s,
the STD, AIDS and
Viral Hepatitis
Department has
been supporting
projects of
non-governmental
organizations
engaged in actions
designed to prevent
STD/AIDS among
street boys and girls
which the video Eu Vou Ficar Bem? (am I going to be alright?), which addresses
issues related to living on the streets and STD/AIDS prevention, was discussed, prepared, and filmed. In 2005, a survey carried out with ten civil society organizations
revealed problems related to weak links between health care actions and difficulties
to access services and support young people with HIV/AIDS on the streets.
Based on this diagnosis, Ministry of Health professionals held meetings
with representatives of governmental and civil society organizations in Rio de
Janeiro, São Paulo, Salvador and, later, in Recife to discuss a pilot project to
tackle the problem.
The meetings were intended to identify challenges, actions under way,
actors to participate in the project, and the area in which it would be implemented. “We identified our strengths and some weaknesses, such as the need
for inter-institutional links,” says the pedagogue and public health educator
Marcos Veltri, from São Paulo.
For the proposal to get off the ground, each city then set up a Working Group
(WG). According to Marcos Veltri, representative of the Municipal Health Secretariat
in the São Paulo WG, the group, made up of representatives of governmental and
non-governmental organizations, was created to provide the links that were missing.
The Working Groups usually met at two-week intervals and there was no
predefined number of participants per institution. As in any group work, each
member of the Working Group was responsible for a specific action. “We were
aware that if each part of the project wanted to do everything, we would not be
able to meet the demand we were supposed to,” recalls Katia Cilene, from the
São Paulo WG. “For this reason, we set a common goal and each member was
assigned the task of achieving a specific element of that goal.”
C oncept
Collective work
In São Paulo, the pilot project involved representatives from the state and municipal
Health Secretariats, the Municipal Social Welfare Secretariat, the Henfil Center for
STD/AID Testing and Counseling (CTA), the Technical Health Care Unit for Children and Adolescents of the Municipal Health Secretariat, the Joselito Lopes Martins
shelter, the Quixote Project, and Moradia Associação Civil (Casas Taiguara).
The Henfil CTA Center acted as the project’s hub. It organized meetings and
workshops and provided technical support in sexuality-related issues and STD/
AIDS prevention. The Casa Joselito Lopes Martins shelter was responsible for
training professionals of the social and health care network. The Quixote Project
carried out direct actions with street boys and girls and the Moradia Associação
Civil worked with sheltered children and adolescents.
Managed in partnership with the State STD/AIDS Coordinating Board and the
Isabel Souto State Center for Adolescent Care (Cradis), linked to the Health Secretariat of the State of Bahia, the Salvador WG was also composed of representatives
of several agencies of the Municipal Health Secretariat, the Yves de Roussan Defense Center for Children and Adolescents (Cedeca-state of Bahia), the Axé Project,
and the Conceição Macedo Charity Institution (IBCM).
According to Maria do Socorro Farias Chaves, the municipal coordinator for
STD/AIDS in Salvador, the representatives of the three civil society organizations
that participated in the Bahia WG formed a very important tripod to deal with
complementary issues. “IBCM provided care, shelter, and food to this audience,”
he explains. “Cedeca dealt with legal issues. The project provided training to law
professionals and college students. And the role played by the Axé Project, which is
known for its expertise in approaching children and adolescents on the streets, was
one of teaching the technology they developed to professionals of the health care
network and other professionals who keep in direct contact with them,” he adds.
In terms of government participation, the Municipal Health Secretariat was
the agency with the greatest weight in the WG. Various agencies, such as the
Health Care District of the Historic Center district of Salvador, comprising ten
health care units, the Municipal STD/AIDS Program Coordinating Board, the
Mental Health/Captains of the Sands team Coordinating Board, and the São
Francisco Health Care Center took an active part in the group.
Cradis also played a prominent role in the project, especially in its early stages.
“With its experience in mobilizing teenagers, it coordinated the process of establishing the WG, hosted four training workshops for professionals, and mobilized all partner institutions engaged in actions of any kind with the project’s audience or which
were working in the Historic Center area,” recalls psychologist Tânia Costa Duplatt.
and
M ethodology
{ 29 }
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
{ 30 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Children assisted
by the Conceição
In Rio de Janeiro, one of the main differentiating factors of the WG’s composition
Macedo Charity
was the presence of representatives of the Rio Criança Network, a benchmark move-
Institution
ment in working with street children and adolescents that includes 17 non-governmen-
in Salvador
tal organizations engaged in integrated and complementary actions in their behalf.
Apart from the coordinator of the Rio Criança Network, journalist Márcia Gatto,
and representatives of three non-governmental organizations that also make up that
network, namely, the Excola project, Childhope Brazil, and the Se Essa Rua Fosse
Minha (If this street were mine) project, the Rio de Janeiro WG also included representatives from the Health Care and Civil Defense Secretariat of the State of Rio de
Janeiro and from the Municipal Health Care and Civil Defense Secretariat.
“NGOs were responsible for organizing the workshops and the Municipal
Health Care Secretariat played the role of a central hub for health care facilities and
non-governmental organizations,” said Carolina Cruz, a social worker and representative of the Municipal Health Care Secretariat in the Rio WG. According to Carlos
Lemos, an occupational therapist and representative of the prevention unit of the
STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Managing Board of the State Health Care Secretariat
of Rio de Janeiro (SES-RJ), the State STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Coordinating
C oncept
and
M ethodology
{ 31 }
Board of SES-RJ provided technical and financial support in meetings, seminars,
forums, and projects implemented by the WG in the city.
In Recife, the WG included representatives of state and local STD/AIDS programs. The state-level program played a key role in the project. It coordinated the
links between the group and training workshops. Representatives of the municipal
program, in turn, participated in the first meetings held for this purpose.
“Because our team is small and we have plenty to do, we chose to work primarily with adults,” explains sociologist Acioli Neto, the municipal coordinator for
STDs, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis. “We deal with the issue as a general problem not
specifically related to children and adolescents on the streets. We saw that there’s
always an adult near children and adolescents on the streets,” he concludes.
When the WG was set up, the Social Welfare and Citizenship Institute (Iasc),
linked to the Social Assistance Secretariat of Recife, relied on a team that approached
children and adolescents on the streets and was trained in workshops organized by
the group. Because of political changes, this team was demobilized. Later on, the
trained professionals left the Iasc, which hired a new team through a competitive public examination. As a result, the institution’s participation in the WG was discontinued.
The WG also involved representatives of civil society organizations such as the
National Movement of Street Boys and Girls Project and the Pé no Chão (down to
earth) Project, which is still engaged in preventive actions.
Integration of policies and institutions
The intersection between policies and institutions is clear in the composition of the
Working Groups and it is one of the project’s most important guidelines. “Children,
Children,
adolescents and
their families are
not audiences to be
narrowly assisted
through specific
policies. They
constitute segments
to be protected by
all policies
adolescents and their families are not audiences to be narrowly assisted through
specific policies. They constitute segments to be protected by all policies,” says Ana
Livia Adriano, former coordinator of the Casa Joselito shelter and a member of the
São Paulo WG. “And STD/AIDS prevention must involve all of them: social work,
health care, housing,” she concludes.
“Years of experience in dealing with street situations show how the criteria
have evolved since the first ones were defined, focusing on interventions in public
spaces, other criteria were emerged, which involved working with communities
and families and, finally, the ones adopted now were established, which focus on
multidimensional responses through public policies at local, state and national levels and work even better if they are coordinated with the international experience
on the subject,” added the Peruvian sociologist Manuel Manrique, a technical advisor to the project Responding to the Vulnerabilities of Young People on the Streets
to HIV/AIDS (see the text “Sharing experiences” in the Annexes section).
Ana Lívia Adriano,
member of the
São Paulo WG
{ 32 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
According to social worker Kátia Cilene Barbosa, a member of the São
Paulo WG, this multidimensional response was one of the main merits of the
pilot project as a whole. “It is not appropriate to address health issues without
taking into account assistance- and labor-related issues. Interventions are required from all public-policy areas,” she says.
In addition to facilitating conversations between secretariats or even departments,
the pilot project was born with the mission of establishing a dialogue between public
agencies and non-governmental institutions. “The WG was set up to develop closer
links between public actions and those carried out by non-governmental organizations. The idea is defining how these actions can be consolidated under a working
partnership,” said Elizabeth Oliveira, coordinator of Excola project in Rio de Janeiro.
According to Marcos Veltri, building and interweaving this network are actually
the first steps for those wishing to implement the project in their city. “We need to
identify the scenario and the actors involved in it, including both public actors and
agents of NGOs and social movements. In some regions, there is an interface be-
The pilot project
was born with
the mission of
furthering a
dialogue between
public agencies and
non-governmental
institutions
tween the situation on the streets, violence, drug trafficking, and sexual exploitation
networks. We cannot come up with any sound proposal if we don’t map out the
territorial forces and the specifics of each situation,” he concludes.
At first, the demands of the Working Groups were usually of a practical
nature: How can preventive actions be taken and discussions on sexuality and
sexual and reproductive rights held on the streets? What is the most appropriate
language to be used when talking to these boys and girls? Are there materials
available to facilitate this dialogue? “We had a lot of questions, and the pilot
gave us the opportunity to test different assumptions in practice. We took steps
to ensure the feasibility of the project and made necessary adjustments as we
implemented it,” Marcos Veltri recalls.
Despite the diversity of responses, the work of all the groups was based on
three action lines: training of professionals, approaching children and adolescents
on the streets/art education and political advocacy/visibility (read more about this
in the chapter Advances).
Training of professionals
The workload and curriculum of the training courses varied from one city to
another, but the focus on the rights of children and adolescents was a common
element in all of them. In São Paulo, the awareness-raising work, called Securing Rights, was carried out by the Paulo Freire Defense Center for Children and
Adolescents (Cedeca) through the Joselito Lopes Martins shelter and the Henfil
Center for STD/AIDS Testing and Counseling (CTA).
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
Art education activity of the If this Street Were Mine
project at Largo do Machado, Rio de Janeiro
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
{ 34 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
The dancer Camilla
Venturelli teaches
a ballet class at the
Casa Taiguara de
Culture and prevention
Teachers at Casa Taiguara, in São Paulo, teach ballet, capoeira and other
arts, and also talk with children and adolescents about STD/AIDS
Cultura e Prevenção
in São Paulo
How can you talk about STD/AIDS during
ning course to them at the Henfil CTA center.
a ballet or capoeira class? This was the
I learned a lot of things about prevention that
huge challenge faced by the coordinators
I was not aware of myself. We had doubts of
and educators of the Casa Taiguara de Cul-
a more technical nature about transmission
tura e Prevenção.
and different kinds of condoms. I had never
They found the answer based on lots of
seen a female condom before,” admits Renee
information and creativity. “We had meetings
Amorim, a musician and coordinator of the
with the art educators involved in our activi-
Casa Taiguara. “We believe that after taking
ties and we delivered a 16-hour (two-day) trai-
this training, which addresses several basic
C oncept
prevention-related topics, our art educators
them. “They take ownership of the art
would be prepared to address key issues in
and build their self-confidence,” he says.
their classes. They just have to add a touch of
“They are seen in a different way when
creativity,” he concludes.
they are playing capoeira. It promotes
Each educator has his or her own way
their self-esteem. With every move, they
of addressing the subject. Capoeira teacher
overcome their inner obstacles and learn
Luciane Friche says that the prevention
to trust us more and more. As a result, we
work comes from the students themselves.
can talk about many things. They become
“They tell us: ‘There’s a guy in the corner
open to learning,” he believes.
smoking pot.’ That’s the cue for me to talk
In his opinion, it’s important not to
about marijuana in the classroom. Girls
mix up teaching with lecturing. “It has to
have told me: “Auntie, one of my classmates
be a more natural thing. I usually try to
is pregnant.” That’s another cue for me to
address issues they have doubts about,”
talk about pregnancy,” she says. According
he explains. “I also try and make them un-
to her, dialoguing with them is easier when
derstand their history through capoeira.
they start the subject. “Otherwise, it might
In this process, they build a sense of self-
look like I’m lecturing them,” she added.
-awareness, identity. It’s very rewarding
Luciane believes that capoeira is use-
to see them overcoming their inner obsta-
ful for this purpose because it promotes
cles, enjoying themselves and wanting to
one’s self-esteem, body awareness, fitness
take care of themselves,” he says.
and reflexes. “Capoeira empowers women.
Ballet dancer and teacher Camila de
They begin to deal with problems head-on
Moura Venturelli agrees with him. “It’s im-
and not to walk bent forward or look away
portant to pave the way for their potential
when people stare at them,” she believes.
to emerge,” she says. “In this process, a more
When she was a health agent in her
municipality, Luciane said she learned
favorable environment is created to discuss
prevention-related issues,” she concludes.
that Home Visits (a municipal health care
She said an effort is made in the clas-
practice) allow you to “see inside.” This is
ses for some subjects, such as dating and
a habit she took to her capoeira classes.
flirting, to emerge. “Young people are very
“You must look at people, pay attention to
shy to talk about these things,” she says. “I
them,” she explains.
try and take advantage of the classroom
Joseph Augusto Ribeiro de Souza,
space to deal with the body in a different
dubbed master Gugu, Luciane’s husband
way, allowing them to express their body
and a former prevention agent, believes
awareness through their movements. They
that the fact that boys and girls identi-
develop a different relationship with their
fy with art makes it easier to bond with
body and with the bodies of other people. p
and
M ethodology
{ 35 }
Ballet helps you
to begin to look at
your own body
Camila de Moura
Venturelli,
ballet dancer
and teacher
{ 36 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
p Ballet helps you to begin to look at your
subject and ask them to type and format it,
own body,” she adds. Camila observes that
for example,” he says. Browsing on the web is
girls who were victims of violence need to
also used for this purpose.
work more deeply on their body awareness
“I don’t know what will be the final result
of what I’m doing now. I guess I’ll just have to
to get rid of this negative reference.
In addition to capoeira and ballet courses, the Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Preven-
wait,” Borges says. “But I can see small results
every day. It’s very rewarding,” he says.
ção offers DJing and IT courses. Giordano
Paulo Soares, 18, one of his IT and DJing
Bruno Borges de Oliveira is both a DJing
students, says he began to think about the
and a computer teacher. In both courses, he
consequences of what he was going after
“Capoeira empowers
says he makes an effort to take advantage of
being admitted to the Casa Taiguara. “I took
women. They begin
every opportunity that arises. “I have many
a medical examination a few days ago to see
to deal with problems
CDs of the Racionais band that talk about
if I had any disease. I even took a vaccine I
head-on and not to
sex for one night and nothing more, about
had never taken before,” he says. “I learned
walk bent forward
abandoned children, pregnancy... I try and
that there are several types of diseases besi-
or look away when
use the lyrics of songs to start a conversation
des AIDS. I didn’t even know what hepatitis
people stare at them,”
with them,” the teacher says. According to
B was. I was scared.”
says Luciane Friche
him, it’s easier to address prevention-rela-
A former drug user, Paul wants to be
(photo), a capoeira
ted issues in his computer classes. “When
an actor or poet in the future. “I will finish
teacher at the
I’m teaching them how to use a Windows
high school and go to college,” he plans.
Casa Taiguara
application, I can use a little text about the
And at the end of the interview he showed
us what he had learnt about DJing. He sang
a rap song that he wrote about his life:
I’m gonna change my life through soccer
With faith in God because He’s fair
This is my last chance
I’m going back home to stay with my old lady
I’ll study and have a good time
I’m standing here
Thinking the whole time
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
I see shoe shiners shining shoes all day long
I’m at the end of the rope and I don’t want
to suffer anymore
I’m standing here on the sidewalk
Many chicks, many guys
Within this containment zone
C oncept
and
M ethodology
Paulo Soares
takes Djing
classes at the
Casa Taiguara
in São Paulo
{ 37 }
{ 38 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
One of the subjects addressed in the training courses was “From the Code
of Minors to the Statute on Children and Adolescents (ECA).” According to Solange Maria Oliveira Santos, coordinator of the Henfil CTA, this discussion was held
throughout the training. “There were two important issues for the professionals to
take ownership of: what it meant to work with these children in the light of the
Statute provisions, seeing them as subjects of rights, and to work with STD/AIDS
prevention from the perspective that I am the subject of my own life. I define for
myself what a prevention strategy should look like or not,” she explains. “The idea
was to lead the professionals to give up a prescriptive-based approach, telling others what they should do, and to begin to build with others what can be done in behalf of citizens in a given community experiencing a specific situation in their lives.”
In Solange’s words, for this to actually happen, the training had to create an
enabling environment in which the professionals could be led to realize what their
own vision was by themselves, so that they could change
their practice. “The practice is what needs to be changed.
And it cannot be changed top-down. People don’t tend
to admit that they might be prejudiced about something.
Prejudice is reflected in the smallest actions, and many of
these actions are subconscious,” she says.
The core topics addressed in the two training modCopy/Quixote Project
ules (Family, Sexuality, Subjectivity of Children and Adolescents, Vulnerability to STD/AIDS, STD/AIDS Prevention, Ensuring Rights, Challenges and Professional
Interventions) were defined in common agreement
during the meetings of the São Paulo WG.
Adolescents assisted
According to the document Histórico do GT de Cri-
by the Quixote Project
anças e Jovens em Situação de Rua de Salvador (Word done to date by the WG on
make art, like this
Street Children and Youths of Salvador), 224 people representing various institutions
illustration, to talk
working in the Historical Center area of Salvador attended four training workshops
about sex and AIDS
between October 2005 and February 2006 which addressed the following topics:
“Living on the streets, access to services and building integrated actions”, “Adolescence and sexuality”, “Approaching, sheltering and dealing with the subjectivity of
young people on the streets (street education)”, “Vulnerability to and prevention of
STD/AIDS among young people on the streets,” which were facilitated by educators of the Axé Project, technical staff of the then National STD/AIDS Program, and
the psychologist Tânia Duplatt, Special Project Coordination of Cradis.
The report stresses that “these workshops were very important to make the participants aware of services available, to sensitize them to these topics, to secure the
C oncept
and
M ethodology
{ 39 }
involvement of high-ranking managers, and to strengthen partnerships.” According
to the document, the methodologies proposed by the Axé Project were used, as
were dialogued presentations by other professionals from the National STD/AIDS
Program (today the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department) who worked with
these topics and were familiar with the techniques used by the program.
According to psychologist Bethânia Cunha, a member of the technical staff
of the STD/AIDS Program of the State of Pernambuco, the idea in Recife was to
hold the workshops where the participants could get to know each other and
become acquainted with what they were doing and how they could contribute
to prevent STD/AIDS among street children and adolescents.
The workshops were attended by professionals from the Social Welfare and
Citizenship Institute (Iasc), linked to the Social Assistance Secretariat of Recife,
and from state and local STD/AIDS programs, NGOs, the municipality’s Family
Health Program, and the Psychosocial Care Centers (Caps).
“One thing that became very clear during the workshops was that many
NGOs were not aware of the work being carried out by public institutions and
vice versa. And they afforded an opportunity for exchange of views that was
appropriately taken advantage of,” says Bethânia. She reported that health care
institutions had little access to boys and girls on the streets and that the NGOs
that were working with this population were not addressing issues related to
HIV, AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. “The way was paved for a
dialogue around these issues,” she believes.
According to the psychologist, the topics addressed during the workshops,
the broad-ranging skills of the technical experts that facilitated them, and the
(participatory) methodology that was used in them made all the difference.
The practice is what
needs to be changed.
People don’t tend
to admit that they
might be prejudiced
about something.
Prejudice is
reflected in the
smallest actions,
and many of
these actions are
subconscious
“Even those who are working in other institutions today have included these
issues on their agendas,” she says, citing technical staff from Iasc, who are now
working in the New Life Project, a program being implemented by the state
government that reaches out to children on the streets.
In Rio de Janeiro, representatives of the state and municipal Health Secretariats
attended a training delivered by the NGO Excola to professionals of Basic Health
Care Units in the regions comprised by the pilot project. Its content was developed
based on a survey of the access of street children, adolescents and youths to health
care. Based on interviews held with boys and girls in the 11-24 age bracket and on
the tabulation of data collected through forms filled out by them, many different
problems were identified, such as difficulties on the part of educators to deal with
the sexuality topic, lack of continued treatment, except for some specific HIV/AIDS
and tuberculosis patients, and a high rate of patients who never go back to a health
Solange Maria
Santos Oliveira,
coordinator of the Henfil
CTA, São Paulo
{ 40 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
care facility after experiencing an improvement in their condition. It was also seen
that emergency units were the entry point of these children and adolescents to
health care facilities in 75.4% of the cases.
Apart from discussing the relationship between these boys and girls and the
health care system, the trainings also addressed what society and government have
been doing in this regard and topics such as education on the streets, development
and the experience of sexuality on the streets, and STD/AIDS and drug abuse prevention actions. Each module lasted from 8 to 12 hours and they afforded opportunities for the professionals to hear the demands from the children and adolescents
as expressed by them. “The Unified Health System (SUS) is supposed to ensure the
universal nature of the services and their integrality and equity,” said pedagogue
Elizabeth Oliveira, coordinator of the NGO Excola. “All our actions in health care
facilities were intended to sensitize their professionals and show them that this
Prevention must
combine promoting
the right to
education to enable
access to rights,
campaigns, and
playful, fun and
serious languages
group has rights and how it could be assisted appropriately.”
New strategies
Other common elements in the trainings delivered to all the groups included practical
experiences of approaching children and adolescents on the streets and art education, which focuses on the body, rights and art tripod. “We knew that advances were
needed in the street intervention methodology. It was necessary not only to create,
but to actually improve existing methodologies,” says Marcos Veltri, from the São
Paulo WG. And this was one of the main challenges of the project, according to him.
The only thing we knew for sure back then was that traditional pedagogy
Márcia Acioli,
advisor to Inesc for policies
in defense of the rights of
children and adolescents
was not working with this population. “Our own trajectory as health professionals always suggested that another model was necessary to discuss sexuality/AIDS
prevention, which we refer to as dialogue-based prevention and involves feelings,
emotions, personal experience,” says Veltri.
“It is important to touch their hearts,” says Márcia Acioli, policy advisor for
the rights of children and adolescents to the Institute for Socioeconomic Studies (INESC). According to her, prevention must combine promoting the right to
education to enable access to rights with holding campaigns and using playful,
creative, fun and serious languages.
These are ingredients which the non-governmental organizations represented in
the Working Groups managed to combine successfully. Through strategic projects,
the Ministry of Health transfers funds to NGOs in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Salvador. Later, in partnership with UNICEF, the latter transferred funds to an NGO in
Recife. The idea was that these organizations would develop courses, workshops,
and educational material to work with STD/AIDS prevention with this audience.
C oncept
and
M ethodology
{ 41 }
The project activities in São Paulo included computer, capoeira, percussion, ballet, and DJing courses (see the “Culture and prevention” section). For
a whole year, these activities were carried out at the Helfil CTA and at the Casa
Taiguara and Casa Abrigo Joselito Lopez shelters.
All the educators involved attended the professional training courses. “The
workshop instructors were very good, but they had no specific knowledge of sexuality,” says Marcos Veltri, from the São Paulo
WG. For this reason, one of the objectives of
the training was precisely the “know-how,”
the junction between this particular sexuality component and playful activities. “Every
day we discussed how a workshop should
be set up: its general and specific objective,
its methodology, its duration... For example,
we played a CD recorded in the old Febem (a
correctional facility for adolescents), which today is called Fundação Casa, with adolescents
playing music and reciting poems such as a
cordel (typical poetry style in Brazil’s northeast region) poem called the Cordel of Sexually Transmitted Diseases. We encourage their
creativity, but it is important to give them a
starting point,” warns Veltri.
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
In 2009, when the Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Prevenção was created1, the courses
began to be delivered there, involving about
700 children and adolescents altogether. According to Renee Amorim, coordinator of the
Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Prevenção, the
courses are short (lasting, on average, four
Computer classes
months) and the main concern in the early stages was determining the right mo-
also provide
ment to talk about prevention with the children and adolescents. “After the train-
opportunities to
ings, we were asking ourselves how we would teach guitar classes and talk about
address issues
prevention. It is not an easy task to begin to talk about prevention with the type
related to STD/AIDS
of students we have. We have girls who are almost 17 and don’t even know that
with the adolescents
they have a uterus. It’s a task to be built little by little,” she says.
1 T
his project was established with the support from the Ministry of Health (MS). In 2010, it submitted a project to CMDCA-SP and was able to
continue to carry out and expand its actions in this area, a major example of local responses to incentives provided by the MS.
{ 42 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
The story of each and every one
Adolescents create a graphic novel to talk
about love and sex with educators
Activities with
children and
adolescents
include reading
Brazilian folk
stories, such as
the legend of
Caipora
Largo do Machado, South Zone of Rio
two characters, a boy and a girl living in
de Janeiro, December 14, 2010. Two edu-
the Largo do Machado square. The char-
cators of the If This Street Were Mine
acters are named Lara and Pierre. Lara is
project arrive at the Largo do Machado
15 years old and Pierre is 17.
square at 9:50 a.m. and begin to talk with
The educator writes: Largo do Macha-
children bathing in a fountain. One of the
do. One of the girls adds: Lara and Pierre
educators, Jô Ventura, sits at a checkers
have just met. All of them want to draw.
table, opens his bag and takes Brazilian
They choose the color of the skin and hair
folk tale booklets out of it. He is soon sur-
of the two characters and their clothing.
rounded by ten children and adolescents
The boy is black and wears just shorts. The
aged from 10 to 17 years old.
girl is also black and wears shorts and top.
The first story is about the legend of
The educator then writes: Pierre and
Caipora. The group begins to point out
Lara are dating seriously! And he asks:
the traits of the main character, a guard-
“What do you thing they are doing?” Larissa*
ian of the forest. When the educator asks
draws Lara and Reginaldo*, who was bath-
them who protects their homes, they all
ing in the fountain, draws Pierre. He tries to
answer together: “My Mother.” He then
mimic the character and draws a scene with
asks them how she protects their homes
Pierre placing his hand over Lara’s breast.
and the group yells: “With her hands.”
He draws a heart in the background. Fábio
Educator Fábio Moraes spreads several sheets of brown paper on the Por-
reassures them that they can draw whatever
they want, because it’s their story.
tuguese stones that pave the square and
Larissa*, 16, who has lived on the
asks them: “Has anyone here ever had a
streets since the age of 5, suggests an idea
girlfriend?” “Oh, I still have one,” answers
for the third strip: Lara is pregnant and
a 12-year-old boy. And he adds: “Of course
Pierre leaves her. The educator writes:
I never had sex with her.”
Pierre leaves Lara with a son for another
Fábio divides a sheet of paper into ten
parts and explains to the group what he
girl called Roberta. Together, they decide
their son’s name is Rafael.
is about to do: he wants to create a comic
Reginaldo*, the most active partici-
strip. He begins by asking them to create
pant in the group, places Roberta and
and
M ethodology
{ 43 }
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
C oncept
Adolescent bathing
Pierre in a house. The educator writes:
“The baby is taken to a shelter. They
Home of Pierre and Roberta. And he asks:
take the baby away,” Reginaldo* an-
Largo do Machado
“What happens to Lara?”
swers. The educator writes: “To make
square, in the
Reginaldo tells him that he knows what
things worse, social workers took Ra-
South Zone of Rio
happens to her and begins to draw a picture:
fael away from Lara. Without her son
de Janeiro
“She starts begging on the streets, and peo-
and feeling lonely, Lara finds friends on
ple just walk by, ignoring her plight.” Fábio
the streets, but also drugs.”
goes over each strip with them once again
The boys, however, decided to give
and then he asks: “Is this an unusual situa-
a happy ending to the story: Pierre
tion on the streets? What happens usually?”
changes his mind and goes back to Lara, p
in a fountain at the
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
{ 44 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Adolescents tell
the story of Pierre
and Lara, two
characters like them
p meets his son and, as in fairy tales, they
live happily ever after.
“We can have conversations with them
for over a week based on a story like this
“In the ending, I will draw a heart
one,” Fábio Moraes reports. “We talk about
and portray them hugging each other
young girls who got pregnant and about
and living happily ever after,” says Regi-
boys who abandoned their children.”
naldo,* who speaks a little about him-
When asked whether we could take
self. The teenager says he took to the
a picture of the group, Fábio Moraes con-
streets when he was seven years old
sults with them and they agree to be pho-
because his mother beat him a lot and
tographed. “In the past, the kids were more
mentions that he had several Laras in
afraid that we could have connections with
his life. Today, at the age of 17, he says
the police,” he says. “Today, they are more
he uses a condom to protect himself and
perceptive: ‘Why are you taking this picture
that he wants to go back to his home be-
of me? For what purpose? What’s the objec-
fore he is 18 years old.
tive?’” This is another result of our work.
C oncept
and
M ethodology
{ 45 }
According to Francis Xavier César Oliveira, assistant coordinator of Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Prevenção, what’s most important is knowing how to seize opportunities. “Sometimes, things don’t work out the way we planned. There were
occasions when we had plans to talk about a certain issue but only two or three
people showed up and we had to cancel classes. What really works is seizing opportunities as they arise, taking advantage of something they say”, he says.
Xavier recalls the example of a girl who missed a ballet class when she
menstruated for the first time, and the teacher took advantage of the situation
to talk about the female body and sexuality with her. “A formal ‘let’s talk about
prevention’ approach doesn’t work with them,” the educator said. “You have to
let the subject come up naturally. That’s why we thought art education would
lend itself well for this purpose.”
According to the educator, besides taking advantage of what comes up in
the classes, opportunities must be created. For example, the Casa Taiguara de
Cultura e Prevenção is intensely decorated with STD and AIDS prevention posters. Right at its entrance, a display filled with condoms and leaflets also draws
the attention of visitors. “They talk about the posters, and we also use this as a
cue to exchange ideas with them,” says Xavier. “As much as we don’t talk about
A formal ‘let’s talk
about prevention’
approach doesn’t
work with street
boys and girls
prevention all the time, the subject is always present in our facilities, in which
there is a display where condoms can be picked up for free. When it was set
up, there was an incredible commotion around it, and the need to discuss the
subject with them became stronger,” he concludes.
Initially, the proposal of Casa Taiguara was to focus its assistance on boys
and girls from shelters and from the Referral Centers for Children and Adolescents (Crecas) in the central region of São Paulo, but it didn’t work out in the
end. “We visited all the shelters and Crecas kept by the Sé regional city hall, told
them about the activities we were carrying out, and called their coordinators
almost every day for three months to ask them to send their boys and girls to
attend our courses regularly. Only a few of them developed a relationship with
us,” recalls Francisco Xavier César Oliveira.
According to him, each shelter and Creca has a different routine, schedules and interests and it was necessary to change strategy to be successful.
The courses were extended to everybody in the community as well. “A kid
from a shelter comes here and sees a girl that is his friend at school and whom
he knows lives in the neighborhood. We began to find it an asset that they feel
included in their community,” Xavier explains.
Today, the boys from the shelter are beginning to take part in our activities
on their own initiative. “This was the project’s idea, i.e. that the boys would take
Francisco César
Xavier Oliveira,
Casa Taiguara
{ 46 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
responsibility for organizing their own lives,” says the educator. And the community itself (which is also extremely vulnerable) benefits from the courses and the
prevention work. “I knew nothing about this before coming here. I didn’t know,
for example, that you don’t get AIDS by kissing,” observes Luiz Fernando da Silva
Santos, 15, who is taking the DJing course with the boys from the shelters and lives
near Casa Taiguara in the Bixiga neighborhood, in São Paulo’s downtown area.
Besides investing in courses, the São Paulo project invests in other STD/
AIDS prevention strategies such as the conversation circles, dubbed Pega-Não
Pega (what seems to be the problem or not) (read more about this workshop in
the chapter Achievements). Considered by all members of the São Paulo WG as
one of the project’s strengths, the workshop uses the technique of addressing
“what seems to be the problem” for the children and adolescents in relation to
sexuality and of taking advantage of their current interests to discuss prevention
issues, as described by Solange Oliveira, from the Henfil CTA.
Setting the right
tone is critical.
Being delicate is
important, but
not to the point
of not being
understood
Both the courses and the Pega-Não Pega workshop are attended by boys
and girls from shelters. The educators of the Quixote Project approach children
and adolescents on the streets and use other strategies.
Created in 1996, the Quixote Project was already working with children and
young people at social risk through art. “Art education has been used as a social
inclusion tool for a long time, but our challenge was one of taking a step forward.
Instead of waiting for them to come to us, we decided to reach out to them on the
streets. We joined the project with the challenge of creating a new form of dialogue
with these boys and girls,” explained the educator Otávio Fabro Boemer, dubbed
Otávio Boemer,
dubbed Ota, graffiti
artist, Quixote Project,
São Paulo
Ota, the graffiti artist. According to him, the first difficulty was addressing the subject.
“It takes a while for you to build a bond with these children, and you can quickly
lose it when you bring up a subject they don’t want to talk about,” the educator says.
In Ota’s opinion, setting the right tone is critical. “If you get too reticent,
they will not understand what you’re talking about. Being delicate is important,
but not to the point of not being understood,” he explains. The second difficulty, according to him, is not trivializing the issue. “You bring it up once, twice...
and the third time you try to do it they say: ‘Come on, let’s not talk about sex
again.’ You have to know when to broach the subject. You don’t want to give
the impression you’re lecturing them,” he warns.
At first, some strategies did not work. “The first thing we tried to do was to give
out condoms to the boys. But before we knew it, they started using them to sniff
glue. We then became more selective in our distribution of condoms,” he recalls.
According to him, no single technique is 100% effective every time for all the
children and adolescents. Each one of them follows their own path. “We don’t adopt
and
M ethodology
{ 47 }
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
C oncept
Educator Artur
a predefined approach. What’s good for one of them might not be good for others or
Mucci of the Quixote
might not work for a particular child,” adds the educator Artur Lauande Mucci.
Project plays the
To facilitate the process of approaching the children, the educators of the
game The Trail
Quixote Project wear a standard uniform and carry a backpack with games
of Urban Refugees
such as dominoes, checkers and other typical Brazilian games, as well as soap
with Hélio*, 16
bubble kits, crayons, paper, etc. Each educator chooses the materials he or she
will carry in his or her backpack according to their abilities. “We adopt the following concept: playing is the path to touch the hearts of these boys and girls.
Each educator then imparts his or her own working style,” explains Lucas Souza
de Carvalho, a psychologist with the Quixote Project.
“Because I like drawing, my main tool was a bag full of crayons, chalks, chalkboards, drawing boards,” says Ota, who used his talents to get close to boys and
girls on the streets. “I would draw something and talk to them,” he says. “They
would tell me things and I would try and incorporate elements of what they told
me into a drawing. I would ask: ‘Is this little story what you told me?’”, he reported.
{ 48 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Another strategy that he adopted was to use the basic skeleton of a drawing
for each of the children to draw a body in their own way. “They often mixed up a
man with a woman,” he recalls. “Sometimes they would draw a beautiful body of a
female with a penis. I would ask: ‘Is there anything missing here?’ And they would
draw a penis. I would ask them back, ‘Wasn’t this a woman?’ And they would answer: ‘Can’t she have a penis? The women I know who hang out in the square have
a penis. Recreating the body is a means to discuss this subject.
Usually, the boys and girls are approached on the streets by teams made
up of a man and a woman. “There are things that a woman will only talk about
with another woman. Besides, it’s not appropriate for a grown man to talk
about sex with a girl,” explained the educator Rodrigo Rodrigues Ferré.
Serious conversation line
The idea is to get closer to the children and adolescents little by little to develop a
deeper relationship with them. “Initially, you play with them, but then you talk with
The idea is to
get closer to the
children and
adolescents little by
little to develop a
deeper relationship
with them
each one of them in turns,” says Lucas Carvalho. And he provides an example: “Something interesting happened at the Anhangabaú neighborhood. The kids were playing
with four male educators while a female educator was talking with a child nearby.
Another child left the group engaged in the game and said: ‘Auntie, I’m waiting in line
for a serious conversation, OK?’ She knows that serious conversations are not held in
that group. And she waited in line until it was her turn to have a serious conversation.”
To facilitate this dialogue, the Quixote Project developed a board game called
the Trail of Urban Refugees with the children they approached on the streets during the pilot project, which summarizes the lives of most of them (read more
about the game in the chapter Advances).
“They built the game,” says educator Artur Lauande Mucci. “I would write
down what the children told me was happening to them and, based on the situations they reported, we developed the Trail,” he explains.
The game board consists of a trail that the players tread to go through and
deal with situations that will allow them to advance or retreat one or more spaces.
The drawings are based on actual characters. They are people like Mateus*, Jéssica
and Leandro*. The game uses actual locations as well: a fountain near the General
Osório street, in the downtown area of São Paulo, the Anhangabaú Valley, etc.
According to Ota, the board game was distributed to more than 100 institutions, but it has not been evaluated so far. Whatever the result of such evaluation,
however, one thing is certain: the children love it.
Hélio*, 16, who has been on the streets for six years, thinks the game “is cool
because it shows the Cracolândia area (crack land, an area in downtown São Paulo
C oncept
filled with crack users) and deals with panicking and craving for drugs,” things he
is familiar with. He says he never had an STD, but was afraid he might have AIDS,
which he tested negative for. A crack user, Hélio* says he doesn’t have a girlfriend
and doesn’t want to have one. He likes the wizard Harry Potter and his dream is to
become a social educator in the future. He also loves to write poetry and doesn’t
use drugs when playing the game, as in the past two days.
With a history of abuse and sexual exploitation, Júlio*, 15, cannot read
but has memorized the cards already and asked to play the game. The card
he picked from the deck was about STDs, a problem he only revealed he had
experienced as he played the game.
The Trail of Urban Refugees game was initially designed to be used for approaching children and adolescents on the streets, but it proved to be particularly successful in more protected environments, such as in the project headquarters at the República square. “In order not to wear the tool out, we must
use it cautiously. The game is used as part of the therapeutic process, when the
adolescents ask to use it themselves. It began, for example, to focus too much
on sex,” explains educator Artur Lauande Mucci.
“Playing games, they open up their hearts,” says educator Raphael Fabro Boemer,
recalling the case of a 12-year-old boy who suffered abuse in the hands of a military
police officer and told this story as he played a chess game. “There was a piece that
never died. It was the bad guy, the military police offer, who had abused him. In his
fantasy, he tried to kill this bad character, but he never died. He felt confident to talk
about it during the game and today he’s staying at a Creca shelter,” he says.
The Sexuality Dominoes is another playful resource developed by the Quixote
Project under the pilot project. “Our idea was to create new prevention strategies.
The boys like to play dominoes a lot. It is one of their favorite games. Why not use
this type of game for prevention purposes?” asks Mucci.
The combination pleased both the educators and street boys and girls.
Because it’s simpler than the board game, the educators still use dominoes to
approach children and adolescents on the streets. Caio*, 14, plays with him,
but he doesn’t like to talk and doesn’t say a word. Educator Rodrigo Ferre
explains that the process of building bonds with them is exactly like this: slow
and time-consuming. And if they don’t want to talk, they shouldn’t be forced
to. The secret is waiting for the right moment.
Roberto*, 17, is also participating in the game and says he protects himself
“more or less,” but admits that he is afraid of “catching a disease.” He says he
used to have a girlfriend who did not like to have sex with a condom and that
they eventually broke up.
and
M ethodology
{ 49 }
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
{ 50 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
In Recife, the
Pé no Chão Group
Renato*, 16, joins the group but doesn’t want to play. He says he uses a
develops activities with
condom when he has sex, but confesses that his “problem” is that he likes ad-
children and adolescents
venture and beautiful women like Gisele Bündchen. The adolescent has been
on the streets and
living on the streets for two months after stabbing his stepfather and being
public squares
kicked out of his house by his mother.
Strengthened identity
In Recife, the Pé no Chão Group uses art education as a tool to strengthen the
identity of the boys and girls it assists. “When we say that our work is focused
on cultural identity, we’re talking about a real phenomenon, as most children
are of African descent. Poverty has a color,” observes Jocimar Borges, the entity’s executive coordinator. “Our art education work is based on building this
identity, on becoming aware of our origins.”
With this mission, the project delivers its courses outdoors in two squares, one in
the Santo Amaro neighborhood and the other one in the Arruda community, Monday
through Friday afternoon. According to Borges, all the pedagogical and artistic evolution takes place on the streets, which are seen as a space for social re-education.
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The percussion classes are focused on typical folk and Afro-descendant rhythms
locally known as Afoxé, Maracatu, Frevo, Ciranda and Samba de Roda. The project
also delivers courses on folk and African dance, capoeira, drawing, juggling, educational and recreational games, theater, DJing, video, musical instrument building,
and literature. At the end of classes, the educators always bring the young people
together in a circle and propose an issue for discussion, encouraging everyone to
talk about it. So-called training meetings are also held at two-month intervals to address specific issues such as STD/AIDS, sexuality, and youth participation.
As part of the work of the WG, the Pé no Chão Group is also implementing a
project called Cine Prevenção (Cinema Prevention) (see text in the chapter Achievements). It is an outdoor event that begins with percussion and dance groups inviting
people to attend. Children and adolescents play drums and dance all the way to the
location where a video will be shown. People step out of their homes or watch from
their windows as the groups make their way to the event. The event opens with live
music and breakdance performances. At the end, a 15-minute video is shown on a
large screen addressing the issue of AIDS and prejudice from the perspective of the
community. As the video is shown, condoms are given out to the audience.
“The most positive aspect of the Pé no Chão project is that its activities
are carried out on the streets. It reaches out to many children and adolescents
engaged in prostitution and drug trafficking to offer them a new life,” says
Adriano*, 17, who has been attending the group’s activities since was 7 years
old. “Children, adolescents and youths living in the community walk by the
Children,
adolescents and
youths living in the
community walk by
the square where
the activities are
carried out and
become thrilled to
see local friends
engaged in them and
join in willingly
square where the activities are carried out and become thrilled to see local
friends engaged in them and join in willingly. The project begins to enter their
lives, giving each one of them better prospects for the future,” he concludes.
Rescuing dreams
Without a project for the future, why bother with prevention? Based on this thought,
rescuing the dreams of boys and girls on the streets is one of the cornerstones of
the STD/AIDS prevention work carried out by the Axé Project in Salvador.
According to sociologist Marle de Oliveira Macedo, the organization’s activities
are focused on three structuring areas: bringing the children and adolescents back
to their families, the rights of children and adolescents (the entity has lawyers to
take care of these issues, which are many), and art education.2
The social technology developed by the project for approaching children and
adolescents on the streets provides educators with the tools they need to do this
2 The Axé Project uses the term “arteducation” based on its belief that art is the essence of education.
Adriano,* 17, member of
the Pé no Chão Group
{ 52 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
and build dialogue channels with them. “Initially, the street educators, who always
work in pairs, visit the areas where these boys and girls live without approaching
them. They just watch them,” says Verônica Rosário Magalhães de Santana, one of
the founding educators of the Axé Project and supervisor of its street educators.
According to her, the first step is taking an X-ray of the area. The educators
watch groups of these boys in different areas, checking to see if they are there every
day or not, if they sleep there, what they do. They write down all this information
to develop a vision of the situation in each area. “Obviously, the boys also begin
to watch those two people who are there all the time taking notes and watching
them,” Verônica says. “They feel that they are being watched and they begin to
watch the educators themselves. That’s how we begin to approach them,” she explains, referring to this phase as “pedagogical flirting.”
At this stage, each educator builds his or her own approach. There is no readymade formula. “When I worked as a street educator, I would begin by asking questions like: ‘Do you know where this street is? How much does this ice cream cost?’
And I would get closer to them little by little”, recalls Verônica Santana.
Each educator
builds his or her
own approach.
There is no
ready-made
formula
After this observation period, a “pedagogical flirting” process begins. “You introduce yourself as an educator of the Axé Project and tell them what you’re doing
there. Little by little, these boys and girls begin to talk, to chat with you, and a bond
begins to be established,” the educator says.
When this bond is strong enough, the educators begin to ask more complex
questions: Why is that boy on the streets? Why did he leave his home? Does he
have any health problem? What does he like to do? “The boys and girls begin to
develop a bond with the educators and to see better prospects for their lives, such
as the possibility of resuming family ties, going back to school, engaging in an activity proposed by the Axé Project,” Verônica explains.
According to her, you cannot attach a time frame to the process. The activities
are prepared, created, and carried out according to their will. “The educators must
have the ability to make a diagnosis, to be creative, to define the profile of that
group or of the children. From then on, they create their own repertoire of activities
and actions,” she explains.
According to Verônica, who has been working with these boys and girls
for over 20 years, even those who are sexually active find it difficult to talk
about sex. Even those assisted in units of the Axé Project are reluctant to take
the test. “It’s a process that we have to keep repeating over and over again
and, if possible, following up on,” she says. “When they come to our units to
take the test unaccompanied, they often decide not to take it in the last minute. When they do take the test, they forget to come back for the result. When
C oncept
they do come back for the result, it’s difficult to convince them to see a doctor
or take the medication he or she prescribed,” she added.
Currently, the organization assists, in its units, 400 boys and girls aged from 12
to 25 years. Its two units offer art education, socialization, and citizenship-oriented
activities. The Pelourinho unit offers music and visual art activities. “Our teaching
is characterized by diversity,” explains Marle, who coordinates the art education
activities of the Axé Project. “They can play classical music or samba-reggae,” he
states. All of them take drawing classes. And the girls usually get together in the
pattern-making and fashion design area after their classes.
At the Baixa do Sapateiro unit, dance and capoeira activities are available. Diverse styles are also taught. These include classical ballet, Afro, modern, contemporary and Brazilian regional dance, as well as regional capoeira, Angolan capoeira, and
“capoeira show” dance classes. Courses for beginners and professionals are available.
“All the children and adolescents who attend our music workshops take percussion classes, just like those who dance must learn how to play capoeira. Here,
we have an element of the political bias of our history. Percussion is the cultural
connection with the blackness of Salvador,” Marle explains. And the art education
work of the Axé Project is also aimed at recovering the identity of young people.
The sociologist recalls that the so-called Afro blocks (percussion bands that
parade on the streets during the carnival season) were the ones that gave a voice
and a face to the black people of Salvador. “In the 1990s, researchers conducted
a survey in two areas: in Camaçari, a petrochemical complex, with workers and
in a poor neighborhood of Salvador,” she reports. “Respondents over 54 years old
couldn’t tell what their color was. But all their children knew that they were black.
And all of them referred to this cultural relationship,” he added.
“I used to live on the streets. I would stay in the city’s commercial district until
midnight. I used drugs, marijuana. The only thing I didn’t do was prostitute myself.
In the Axé Project, they said I was beautiful, that I should change my life, that I had
a future ahead of me. I considered myself beautiful, but I felt discriminated against. A
foreigner once called me ‘ugly and stinking black girl’ on the streets. I thought I had
no future because I was poor,” says Roberta*, a 16-year-old teen. Assisted by the Axé
Project for four years and a half, Roberta is now a singer with the Brasil Axé band, is attending the eighth grade of elementary school, and wants to go to music college in the
future. “The Axé Project made me think that you can only win by fighting,” she says.
Roberta* also recognizes that she learned about sexuality and how to protect herself from STD/AIDS in the project. “The educators would talk about this
in class, there was a play about sex, about AIDS, and also lectures, so I felt
comfortable to talk about these things with my educator when I lost my virgin-
and
M ethodology
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{ 54 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
ity. I was 14 years old, and when I told her what had happened she advised
me to use a condom to protect myself from diseases and also to avoid getting
pregnant. Protecting oneself is important. I know several people who have the
disease. I don’t want to catch it. It’s too much suffering,” she says.
In Rio de Janeiro, a partnership between governmental and non-governmental
organizations enabled the WG to carry out joint actions with street boys and girls. In
the Working Group, the NGO Excola offers activities to vulnerable young mothers.
“We decided to address the gender issue,” explains Elizabeth Oliveira.
“In 1990, the Excola team kept in touch with groups of girls in the downtown
area of Rio de Janeiro, more precisely in the Lapa district and in the Cinelândia and
Tiradentes squares,” says a document called Programa Jovens Mães em Situação de
Risco (Young Mothers At Risk Program), published by Excola and World Vision in
2008. “As time went by, we noticed that the girls were becoming women, getting
pregnant, and contracting various infectious-contagious diseases in the midst of the
Communication
strategies are
varied: radio
spots, radio
dramas, auditorium
shows, plays,
and cartoons
inherent conflicts of living on the streets,” she concludes.
As in other projects, the prevention work is art-based. “It’s not a matter of information any longer,” explains Elizabeth. “It’s a behavior change process, and in the
case of street boys and girls, it is of course a more difficult process,” she concludes.
The work is always part of what Elizabeth Oliveira refers to as baseline: the
extent to which they are aware of STD/AIDS-related issues. In 2008, based on discussions held within the Working Group, a questionnaire consisting of 109 questions was applied to 16 young ladies who had just joined the Young Mothers on
the Streets Program. Although they had heard about HIV/AIDS, 88% of them had
no information about vertical transmission.
Once the problem was diagnosed, the issue of vertical transmission was
addressed. Each group remains active for one year and includes around 20
participants. All of its members are adolescents who are pregnant or have one
or more children. They collect information for three months. They browse
the web and read all they can find about the subject. In the following three
months, they discuss the language they will use, i.e. how this information will
be conveyed to other adolescents. “The group only begins to think about the
communication strategies it will use to convey what it learned after all these
parameters have been defined,” explains Elizabeth Oliveira.
Communication strategies are varied: radio spots, radio dramas, auditorium shows,
plays, and cartoons. According to Elizabeth, it all depends on the group’s profile and
decision. The NGO has a community radio station called Madame Satã through which
some of its productions are broadcast. In the case of this specific group, which addressed issues related to vertical transmission, radio spots were created.
and
M ethodology
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Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
C oncept
Woman-to-woman conversations
All the children and
adolescents who attend
Today, according to Elizabeth, there is a waiting line for the program, which
the music workshops
prioritizes girls who spend more time on the streets and topics such as prenatal
of the Axé Project in
care. “Because it addresses the gender issue, a closer link between health and
Salvador take
motherhood needs to be established. It’s not just about emergency care. We
percussion classes
need to create a culture of prenatal care, of regular health care for children, of
immunization. We want to contribute to making sure that the girls will be able
to do these things,” says Elizabeth Oliveira.
According to research published in the report Programa Jovens Mães em
Situação de Risco in 2008, prepared by Excola and World Vision, this goal has
been successfully achieved: 90% of the pregnant adolescents or of those who
got pregnant during the project period had prenatal visits, 100% became aware
of the public health care network and began to use it, and 70% adopted family
planning methods after taking part in the project.
{ 56 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Apart from an activity called Camisinha na Cabeça (don’t forget to use a condom) (read more about it in the chapter Achievements), which is a contest of Afro
hairstyles using condoms to remind them of the need to use a condom, the NGO
holds workshops to teach them how to put a condom on. “There’s also the myth
that condoms burst. The boys say to the girls that they have a huge penis and that
the condom will break if they wear one. So we play a little game: we put a condom
on an arm, on a cucumber, on a carrot, things the girls are familiar with, to show
them that this is not true,” says Elizabeth.
According to her, the workshop also shows them that using a condom can be
fun. “We discuss how condoms can be used to seduce a partner,” she explains. “This
is woman’s talk for sure. We talk about women discovering their bodies, masturbation,
and so forth. Many of the girls have no or very little awareness of their own bodies.”
A story with many authors
While the NGO Excola addresses the gender issue in the Working Group, the
If This Street Were Mine project offers activities to street boys and girls in Rio’s
downtown area and south zone.
The team of educators of the If This Street Were Mine project is made up
of three professionals at least. Initially, they analyze the environment (services
available, possibilities and risks) and the children’s situation. The idea is to train
“conveyors of knowledge” among street children and adolescents for them to
convey key information to their peers.
The project includes the holding of several workshops consisting of recreational activities, such as a mamulengo (puppet theater) and a storytelling workshop.
The educators read Brazilian folk tales and then the youths develop their own plots
with ingredients of their daily lives (read more about it in the section “The story of
each and every one”). “Based on these stories, we can make the appropriate referrals,” says educator Fábio Moraes. “They help us address cross-cutting topics, such
as drugs, sexually transmitted diseases, etc.,” adds Jô Ventura.
The same thing happens with the puppet theater. The children and adolescents participate in every stage of the activities, including that of building puppets from milk cartons.3 We begin to create the puppet characters while playing
a game, listening to music, or thinking about a specific character. One of the
girls, for example, created the character of a female governor, whom she ended
up incorporating. “For almost a month, we discussed with her what she would
do if she were governor,” recalls Jô Ventura. “She said she would set up several
3 B
ecause some “dangerous” materials must be used for this purpose, such as scissors, retractable knives and glue, the puppets are taken to
the streets as semi-finished items. “We do half the work and they do the other half,” explained educator Jô Ventura.
C oncept
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shelters for her street mates where they would have plenty to it and lots of fun,
health care...,” he says. “In relation to health care, she said: ‘I’ll keep the doors
open to everybody,” added Fábio Moraes.
According to him, the puppeteers always address health-related issues for
the children to associate them with the puppets. Puppet theater was the flagship
activity of the institution in its work within the WG. “Our discussions were held
through puppets,” he says. “The puppets were the ones that asked the questions
to the kids,” the educator recalls.
According to Claudio Andrés Barria Mancilla, one of the coordinators of the
If This Street Were Mine project, all the work is based on a social circus approach,
on the use and reinvention of public spaces. “Through this kind of dialogue, conversation, you progressively realize the potential of the children and adolescents,
which is our focus, but also their demands and needs. We then make an effort to
develop links, to ‘weave’ networks,” he explains.
Besides representatives of the Excola and If This Street Were Mine projects,
the Rio WG includes representatives of the NGO Childhope Brasil, which since
1990, when it began to operate in Brazil, has been developing the Papos project
(Promotion and Guidance in Health Care, Sexuality, and STD/AIDS Prevention).
In its first phase, the project focused on training social educators. With the
Many of the girls
have no or very
little awareness of
their own bodies
results achieved, it began to work with another audience: adolescents in communities at social risk and young people on the streets, and became a multifold program
involving different components: Papos Curso, Papos Volante, Papos com Hip Hop
e Samba, Papos na Mídia and Papos Teatro.
According to Dayse Tozzato, president and representative of the institution in the Rio WG, the NGO focuses its work in the WG on the Papos Teatro
(theater) component of the program. The project is based on the Theater
Forum technique, a methodology created by playwright Augusto Boal and
applied in over 70 countries.
Using this methodology, plays are entirely produced by street boys
and girls: their scenery, costumes, and lines. The process of producing a
play usually takes one year. According to educator Janaína Ricardo dos
Santos, the first step is what she refers to as “flirting.” During this phase,
which lasts about three months, the group begins to be formed and an
informal work contract is established among its members involving commitments, such as one of not using drugs during the activity. “This contract
is posted a wall on the days that they engage in this activity,” she says. “If
we see that any of them is not abiding by the rules, we show the contract
to them and say: ‘Don’t forget your agreement’.”
Elizabeth Oliveira,
NGO Excola,
Rio de Janeiro
{ 58 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
On the first day of the activity, the educators also hand out a questionnaire
with 21 questions to the adolescents. These include behavioral questions, such as
“What comes to your mind when you think about going to the streets?” or “What
is the first word that comes to your mind when you hear the word drugs?”, and
more direct questions about AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases. Based on
their answers, multipliers create a program that includes information about diseases and even on how to use a condom.
Before the play is produced and staged, several activities are carried out.
They draw, paint, write poetry and prepare a so-called Declaration of Identity,
which is a letter written to someone about things they don’t have the courage to
say personally. They don’t have to put their name on
the letter or that of the addressee. Based on these letters, the team often refers members of the group to a
psychologist or social worker.
This phase usually lasts from two to four months
and includes the process of building the story of the
play. The activity is divided into two stages. In the first
one, the focus is on prevention. “We repeatedly remind
Publicity material/If This Street Were My Project
them of the information that they should bear in mind,”
the educator says. They then tell their stories and one
of them is selected. Once this is done, the fourth stage
begins, in which a text is produced based on their accounts. “With these small pieces of information, I develop a dramatic text for the group, which reads it and
decides: ‘It’s good enough, or you should change this
or that line.’ The text is then rewritten and we begin to
create a soundtrack to the play,” concludes Janaína.
Puppets made from
The idea, according to the educator, is to have
milk cartons are used
them write prevention songs, which are then used in the actual play (read part
by the NGO If This Street
of the lyrics of a song on the next page). At this stage, Papos Teatro works in
Were Mine, from Rio
partnership with Papos Hip Hop, which helps with the lyrics and rhythm.
de Janeiro, to talk with
At this point, the artistic stage begins, which includes setting the stage, text
children and adolescents
rehearsals, setting up the scenery, and preparing the costumes for the play. Each
about STD/AIDS
group is given a name and they have staged two plays so far, one in 2003 and another one in 2007. The play Crianças de Ninguém (nobody’s children), staged by
the Nós da Rua (we from the streets) group, talks about the prejudice they suffer,
and Copacabana Sacana (naughty Copacabana), staged by the Renovando Vidas
(renewing lives) group, addresses sexual harassment on the streets.
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Each play lasts from 30 to 40 minutes, is open to the general public, and has a
unique format. “We stage a problem and invite the audience to picture themselves in
the characters and come up with ideas,” explains educator Janaína Ricardo dos Santos.
She gives an example citing the play Crianças de Ninguém. “A group of characters enters a bar and the bartender refuses to serve them soda. They show him that they have
the money to pay for it and the bartender calls the police. They are expelled from the
bar and beaten by the police,” the educator continues. “We then invite the audience to
come up with possible solutions. Someone from the audience is invited to the stage to
present an alternative. We never present just one alternative. We provide at least three,
so that they can have more options. Someone comes to the stage and says: ‘I’m calling
the Consumer Protection Hotline’. The boys find out that there’s a Consumer Protection Hotline that they can rely on because they pay for it. People come up with ideas
that they gradually incorporate into their daily lives,” she says.
Flavia Bittar, the project coordinator, believes that the process that they go
through, which includes from attending prevention workshops4 to engaging in activities using Augusto Boal’s theater of the oppressed approach, interferes in their
self-esteem and sexuality. Geraldo Junior Travassos Arruda, the multiplier Junior,
20, who is participating in the interview, agrees with her. The boy spent much of his
Forgetting to use
a condom is a
foolish thing
done by people who
are not concerned
about STD or HIV
prevention
childhood and adolescence on the streets and was one of the authors of the play
Copacabana Sacana in 2006, which is based on actual situations he experienced
while living on the streets.
“I returned to my home and began to dress nicely, and I noticed that people saw
the difference,” says Junior. “I also returned to school, and people began to look at me
in a different way. Once I became aware of the need to protect myself, I avoided a lot
of girls. I began to think differently,” he concludes, pointing out one of the main results
of the work carried out by Childhope, the Rio WG, and the pilot project as a whole.
Even though no formal evaluation of these art education initiatives has been
made, psychologist Yone Moura, an assistant researcher with the Brazilian Information Center on Psychotropic Drugs (Cebrid) who has been working voluntarily
with this population for 20 years and completed a master’s program on this topic
in 2006, recognizes that art makes it easier to reach out to these boys and girls.
“You deal with things that are part of their life cycle. You give them opportunities
to engage in fun activities. You offer them an alternative,” she concludes. According
to her, the most recent survey conducted by Cebrid in all Brazilian capitals showed
that the experiences in art education were successful and cannot be ignored.
* The names were changed to protect the identity of the children and adolescents.
4 According to Flavia Bittar, the work in the prevention workshops is based on Paulo Freire’s harm reduction policy,
participatory methodology, and pedagogy of autonomy.
Excerpt from the lyrics
of the song Para Não
Viver Assim, written by
adolescents assisted
by Childhope’s Papos
com Hip Hop project.
Multiplier Junior, 20,
is one its authors
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
Children play
at the Conceição
Macedo Charity
Institution in
Salvador
CHALLENGES
Multiple barriers
Networking, adopting public policies that see street
children and adolescents in their entirety, and addressing
STD/AIDS prevention as an action beyond merely
distributing condoms. These are some of the main
challenges faced by the Working Groups in the cities
in which they were set up
Adolescent attending an art workshop of the Axé Project in Salvador
{ 62 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
“I only met my father when I was 7 years old. He died, and three months
later my mother was arrested. I stopped studying in the first grade of high
school and I don’t know what to do with my life. I took an IT course for a week.
I learned how to build websites. I have Twitter, Facebook... and I was about to
set up a relationship website. I used to inject drugs, cocaine. When I was admitted to the Casa Taiguara, I already knew everything about STD/AIDS. They
would ask me questions and I had the answers at my fingertips. But I don’t like
to use condoms. I don’t care if I catch AIDS or not. What can I do?”
This sad testimony of Mark*, 15, who has been participating in activities offered by the NGO Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Prevenção in São
Paulo, clearly shows the difficulties involved in preventing Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and AIDS among street children and adolescents.
These boys and girls, who live under conditions of extreme vulnerability
and are exposed to all kinds of risks on a daily basis, must be seen by
public officials in their entirety and without prejudice, moralistic postures,
The idea of
immediacy, which
is very common
among adolescents,
is even stronger
among boys and
girls on the streets
or taboos. One of the main challenges of working with this population is
dealing with STD/AIDS prevention in a way that involves more than merely providing explanations on how to use a condom and takes into account
the important dimension of the right to health in particular and of the right
to life more generally. Marcos*, for example, says he knows everything
there is to know about prevention. Still, he doesn’t use condoms.
According to Father Alfredo de Souza Dórea, one of the coordinators of the
Conceição Macedo Charity Institution in Salvador, “resisting sexual advances
from international tourists is difficult for these adolescents.” Lucas*, 17, explains
why: “They pay more to have sex without a condom and with drugs,” he says.
The idea of immediacy, which is very common among adolescents,
is even stronger among boys and girls on the streets. According to social
worker Eliane Gomes Rodrigues, from the Axé Project of Salvador, one of
the main tasks is precisely that of arousing the interest of these children
and adolescents in the prevention topic. “They are usually not interested in
it. They only begin to care when they catch a disease. As much as we discuss health and prevention with them, the task is very difficult, as they see
themselves as eternal. They either think they are eternal or their behavior
in life is that of living the now. Life is today, they don’t know what will
happen tomorrow, so it doesn’t matter to them,” Eliane observes.
According to Elizabeth Oliveira, who works with streets girls with the
NGO Excola in Rio de Janeiro, these girls only begin to think about prevention after they are diagnosed with an STD. “They don’t see a doctor when
Challenges
Youths of the
NGO Pé no Chão
in Recife painted
for a performance
they menstruate for the first time. They completely disregard this need. Most
of the girls will only see a gynecologist in their prenatal period or when they
experience the first symptoms of an STD. They are not prepared for sexual
experiences before they begin their sexual life,” Elizabeth explains.
Sexuality and rights
Because of these unique features and of the complexity of the daily life of
street children and adolescents, STD/AIDS prevention actions must be based
on a gentle, sensitive, and comprehensive approach – a lesson that the four
Working Groups (the São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Recife WGs)
learned from the experience of dealing with these boys and girls. “One of the
common guidelines of the work carried out in the four groups is the concept
that prevention should not be limited to conveying information or providing
inputs. Prevention requires dialogue with these adolescents around their living conditions. Teenagers know what a condom is, how important condoms
are and what they are used for, but they don’t use them because they develop
their sexuality on the streets. Or because they only make sex when they are
completely stoned and can’t even remember what they did,” observes Ana
Lívia Adriano, a member of the São Paulo WG and former coordinator of the
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{ 64 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
NGO Casa de Acolhida Joselito Lopes. “How can you deal with this situation,
knowing that adolescents have sexuality concerns and rights, that their bodies and feelings speak and need to be legitimized? One must understand that
they go through all these discoveries on their own, in a very violent environment. They experience these processes on the streets, without any privacy,
in the midst of poverty, hunger and chaos. We must understand these facts
in order not to moralize our relationship with these adolescents. We need a
cultural shift in how we work with adolescents,” argues Ana Lívia.
For all of these reasons, one of the key requirements for a sound prevention
strategy is empowering girls and boys through actions designed to strengthen
their self-esteem, making them understand the importance of health, well-being,
and caring for their bodies and minds. “They have very immediate needs. If, for
Family Health Care Program
for the street population
The cross-cutting nature of the service is its main strategy,
integrating primary health, mental and dental care teams
“You have to combine all these elements
The project was launched in Septem-
and see what happens,” poet and musi-
ber 2010 and is under implementation.
cian Marcelo Yuka from Rio de Janeiro
The work is carried out by two basic teams
is quoted as saying in the introduction
of the Family Health Care Program (a
of a presentation1 on the project Saúde
doctor, a nurse, a nursing technician and
em Movimento nas Ruas (health on
six community health agents), a mental
the move on the streets, Family Health
health care team (two psychologists, a so-
Care Strategy for the Street population/
cial worker and a music therapist), and a
Street Clinic), designed for the street
dental care team (a dentist and a dental
population in the downtown area of
health technician). The teams are active in
Rio de Janeiro. The sentence summa-
two schedules: from 9 to 6 a.m. and from 1
rizes the main strategy of the service:
to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday in pre-
adopting a cross-cutting approach.
defined zones in downtown Rio de Janeiro.
“With this population, health care
1 A presentation called Saúde em Movimento nas
Ruas – Estratégia de Saúde da Família para População
em Situação de Rua/Consultório de Rua
cannot be compartmentalized, divided
into different disciplines,” says Iacã
Challenges
example, someone offers them sex in exchange for something, without using a
condom, and they are not empowered, strengthened, they will take it,” says Maria
do Socorro Farias Chaves, municipal STD/AIDS coordinator in Salvador.
In the opinion of educator Elizabeth Oliveira, coordinator of the NGO Excola in Rio de Janeiro, prevention must comprise two dimensions. One of them
is a behavioral dimension, which is fitting life choices and the need to take care
and protect oneself and others into the context of the lives of these children
and adolescents. “Our work is much more one of promoting health. Prevention
for the sake of prevention doesn’t work. We are increasingly convinced of this
fact. Conditions must be favorable (self-esteem, quality of life, among others)
for them to realize the importance of protecting themselves. Otherwise they will
not use a condom. They can’t even see that this is important,” says Elizabeth.
Macerata, coordinator of the project
a member of the team since the project
teams. “On the streets, we have to adopt
was launched. According to Janete Ri-
an integrated approach. A person with a
beiro, a community health agent, keep-
huge wound in the leg might also con-
ing constantly in touch with this popula-
sume psychoactive drugs and have tu-
tion is a key ingredient for building this
berculosis and an often serious mental
bond. “You have to talk to them, explain
illness. All at the same time. That is why
what you are doing, and let
our teams were designed and structured
them open up with you. They
as they are,” she says.
will not tell you right away
In the Health on the Move on the
Streets project, the assistance provided,
that they have syphilis, HIV or
tuberculosis,” she concludes.
With this population,
health care cannot be
compartmentalized,
divided into different
disciplines
the analysis of cases, and the therapeutic
Iacã Macerata believes that
project are always based on a transdis-
the project’s task is to build
ciplinary approach. Community health
bridges between the streets
agents go to the streets and approach
and the institution. “The main
those in need of assistance there. De-
problem faced by our popula-
pending on the case, patients are referred
tion is that it seldom manages
to a hospital or to the Oswaldo Cruz Mu-
to get past the security guard
nicipal Health Care Center, where the
at health stations and hospitals. Our role
team keeps a clinic for emergency care.
is one of including these people in the
Iacã Macerata,
coordinator of the
project teams
“We focus a lot on developing a bond
health care network and in the rights net-
with them,” said the nurse Sebastião
work that the state must ensure access to,”
Carlos Silva da Conceição, who has been
she concludes.
{ 65 }
{ 66 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Integral Vision
According to pedagogue Marcos Veltri, who works in the São Paulo city
hall as a public health educator and was the representative of the municipality in the WG, actions to deal with STD/AIDS should be based on the
principle that the rights of these children and adolescents to life, safety and
health have been violated. “Prevention is linked to sexuality and sexual
and reproductive rights and is part of a greater debate on the right to
health, which in turn is part of an even larger debate on human rights and
on the right to life,” he says.
Integrality is another key factor, as highlighted by Maria do Socorro Farias
Chaves, from the Salvador WG. “People are integral beings. This is a comChild practicing
plex issue. As much as we focus on STD/AIDS prevention or even on treat-
dance moves
ing these diseases, these kids have other needs that will eventually emerge.
at the Axé Project
For this reason, we need to ensure integral, universal and equal health care,
in Salvador
which is a principle of the Unified Health System,” she stresses. “Our actions
Challenges
{ 67 }
must be based on the notion of integrality. We began to address issues related
to HIV/AIDS in our workshops, but we then realized that children and adolescents have different needs. That is when we found out that we need to involve more actors in partnerships to deal with other situations,” she explains.
Jocimar Alves Borges, executive coordinator of the NGO Pé no Chão
in Recife, believes that integrating different public policies is a key requirement for working with street children and adolescents. “When we
began to consider the possibility of offering educational activities to
them, the idea was to create educational spaces and facilities. But we
then saw that this would be wrong for two reasons: it would keep the
children and adolescents away from their families and from the public
school network. We then decided to anchor our pedagogic policy in two
key axes: strengthening the relations between the children and their
families and building a relationship with public institutions, beginning
with the schools,” Borges reports.
Gaps in the public health care network
As Maria do Socorro and Jocimar Borges stressed, the challenges of this journey
go beyond the complex task of preventing STD/AIDS. In the daily work with
children and adolescents on the streets, other difficulties were observed, such
as shortcomings in the public health care system in assisting this population.
We need to ensure
integral, universal
and equal health
care, which is
a principle of the
Unified Health
System
“Street children are nobody. Their access to services, to the service network,
whether the health care or school network, is very difficult,” says journalist Márcia Gatto, from Criança Rio, a network of organizations created to work with
street boys and girls.
One of the main hurdles faced by the Working Groups was that of referring
these children and adolescents to health care services. Eliane Gomes Rodrigues,
from the Axé Project, recalls that when these boys or girls are willing to go to
a medical facility, the red tape involved in seeing a doctor drives them away.
“They have to show their ID, fill out a registration form. If they are ‘minors,’
they must be accompanied by an adult. We discuss these issues a lot in the Salvador WG. We discuss what we can do to facilitate their access to health care
services,” says Eliane.
“They go (to health facilities) the way they are: barefoot, shirtless, smelly.
And the logic of security guards or reception clerks in health care facilities is
that of preventing people with that appearance from entering. We often have to
make sure that these children take a bath and wear clean clothes before going
to a health care facility with them,” said Father Alfredo Dórea from IBCM.
Maria do Socorro
Farias Chaves,
from the Salvador WG
{ 68 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Organization and planning:
dynamism in the Salvador WG
Creating the “position” of executive secretary was instrumental
for recording the results of the WG meetings and activities
We saw that we
needed a person
to organize
and record what
was happening
in the WG
Sandra Mendonça,
from the Salvador WG
One of the good practices mentioned by
dor, tells us why they decided to assign
members of the Salvador WG was that of
a person to act as executive secretary of
assigning a person to be the executive sec-
the group: “We decided that we needed
retary of the group, which gave more flu-
to record the work of the WG. After a few
idity to its activities. “Our best moments
discussions, we decided that it would be
were when we had a person to take notes
a good idea to ask someone who was al-
during our meetings. This is something
ready working in the network to take on
that the WG needs to rely on, a person
this mission. Sandra Carvalho, a social
to record our discussions. For two years,
worker from the São Francisco Health
Sandra Carvalho took these notes and
Care Center who was familiar with this
her taking this role in the WG truly en-
population, was then assigned to the job.
riched our work,” analyses Eliane Gomes
She took a liking for it and strengthened
Rodrigues, from the Axé Project. “All the
our work even more.”
members of the group have a multitude
Sandra Moreira Costa de Carvalho,
of tasks to carry out. And having someone
a social worker with the São Francisco
to take care of the agenda and record our
Health Care Center, tells us how it all
discussions and proposals is important. It
happened. “When I took on the role of
was the most organized phase of the WG,
executive secretary, in 2005, the WG had
during which we developed reflections,
been active for one year already. Sandra
fulfilled our agenda, and met the most. It
Mendonça, the district coordinator, was
is of essence to rely on someone to take
the one who invited me. She briefed me
care of the group, to take notes, to prepare
on all actions carried out by the WG, on
its agenda, to propose ideas, to facilitate
the joint actions of the networks, and on
the work. That was our best period. There
the training workshops that had been
was a logic behind holding our meetings
held already. My role was one of bring-
in different institutions,” Eliane added.
ing all the people involved in the WG to-
Social worker Sandra Mendonça, who
gether in meetings, record the results of
was a manager of the Sanitary District
these meetings, plan their actions, and
of the Historical Center area of Salva-
take part in the discussions in the WG.
Challenges
Educator of the
This proved to be important, as the group
ready and were familiar with the propos-
Axé Project with
was not prepared to record what was be-
al, and they just needed an organizer to
a street boy
ing discussed,” she explains.
check what they had come up with as pro-
in Salvador
According to Sandra Carvalho, the
posals and what they had actually imple-
group needed somebody to bring its
mented. I was the link between what was
members together, check when meetings
discussed in the WG and the mobilization
could be held, and determine which ac-
work with institutions and the Sanitary
tions should be refined. “I joined the team
District to ensure the continuity of their
when these networks and institutions had
actions. We documented the meetings of
been working together for some time al-
the WG, which were planned annually. p
{ 69 }
{ 70 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
p For each meeting, I prepared a report of
more than 50 high-ranking managers of
the discussions. At the following meet-
social care institutions, police stations,
ing, we resumed the discussions we had
courts, guardianship councils, NGOs,
held in the previous one, checked what
and other entities working with children
had worked, and identified new issues to
and adolescents on the streets directly or
be addressed,” Sandra recalls.
indirectly. “I believe that the role of the
She also checked how things were
person in charge of centralizing all the
going with the organizations that were
information is precisely one of avoiding
already taking part in the WG and other
gaps, of ensuring a seamless work envi-
institutions that the group thought it
ronment. This person understands the
would be important to mobilize. Be-
larger picture because he or she is in-
sides checking all of this, she updated
volved in a larger action,” she observes.
our data. She also visited
Another distinguishing feature of
the institutions to check
the Salvador WG was the habit of hold-
their difficulties in assist-
ing regular meetings to assess its per-
ing children, adolescents
formance. “These evaluation workshops
and youths on the streets.
were extremely important. They took
“I also organized meet-
the form of conversation circles. They
ings with the network
were held for us to evaluate our actions,
members and managers.
present our achievements, and asses our
In one of these meet-
difficulties,” says Tânia Duplatt, from the
ings, the professionals
Isabel Couto State Center for Adolescent
reported that they were
Care (Cradis) of Salvador. “Holding these
facing difficulties to ac-
workshops is important to update epide-
tually improve the ac-
miological data, because the profession-
cess of street children and adolescents
als involved in primary care can provide
to health care facilities because their
us with inputs about the reporting of
superiors didn’t understand what they
diseases. You can then assess difficulties
were doing. Their subordinates were at-
related to, for example, treatment adher-
tending the meetings, but they weren’t.
ence,” she believes. According to Tânia,
Based on this information, the WG de-
without a technical group to coordinate
cided to have a large meeting with these
the actions, to organize meetings bi-
public officials to address this problem
monthly or monthly to assess and collect
and present the proposal of the WG,”
proposals, the WG would tend to stag-
the executive secretary said. According
nate around past actions and would not
to Sandra, the meeting was attended by
develop new strategies.
The role of the person
in charge of centralizing
all the information
is precisely one
of avoiding gaps
Sandra Carvalho,
from the Salvador WG
Challenges
{ 71 }
Educator Fábio Moraes, from the If This Street Were Mine project in Rio de
Janeiro, makes similar considerations. “The main challenge of the Rio Working
Group was that of developing closer relations with health care authorities, and
not only with officials at the very top, but also with the professionals working
in health facilities. How could we lead those people to see these kids in a
different light? We also had the inverse challenge of making sure that the kids
would not feel excluded to the point of refusing to enter a hospital even when
they were in bad need of health care,” observes Fábio Moraes. “I remember
that this was a recurring point in our conversations with them. For example, a
boy would tell us that he had had gonorrhea and we would ask him how he
had taken care of the problem. The answer would be that he had taken medicines, but not that he had gone to a hospital for treatment. This gap between
the children and health care services continues to be our main problem. Addressing it is our biggest challenge. These professionals need to understand
that they are not doing any favor by assisting them and that health care is a
right of these children and adolescents. And you have to try and make these
children understand that they have this right,” concludes Moraes.
Social worker Carolina Cruz, representative of the Municipal Health Care
Secretariat of Rio de Janeiro in the WG, has similar impressions. According to her,
one of the biggest challenges was overcoming the resistance of health care professionals to treating these children and adolescents. “Health care professionals
These professionals
need to understand
that they are not
doing any favor
by assisting them
and that health
care is a right of
these children and
adolescents
just couldn’t see them as children. We realized right away that the main problem
lied in their resistance to treating them. Obviously, the kids also resist the idea
of seeking their care. The opening hours of the facilities, their routine, and their
procedures all make it difficult for them to seek their care. Health care services
are not yet prepared to meet the needs of this population,” she adds.
According to Aldir Rodrigues, a coordinator of the NGO Pé no Chão in Recife, one of the major successes of the Working Group was that of creating a
discussion forum to expose all the difficulties and shortcomings of the health care
network in meeting the needs of these children and adolescents in the city. “In
training meetings and seminars, we discussed the limitations and difficulties faced
by these children and adolescents when they sought assistance at health stations
in the municipality and all the participants provided inputs to the discussion.
Problems lied not only in not knowing how to get to these facilities or that they
even existed. There was also the problem of how they were received there. When
a street child or adolescent goes to a health care facility, who are the first people
they meet there? The doorman, the security guard. And how do they treat these
boys? Do they allow them into the facility gently and try to help them?” he asks.
Fábio Moraes,
educator
of the NGO If This
Street Were Mine in
Rio de Janeiro
{ 72 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Adolescent on the
street is approached
by a team of the
Conceição Macedo
Charity Institution
in Salvador
Possibility of being treated at a health facility
without showing ID documents
In the past, these
children and
adolescents could
only be treated at
a health facility if
they had the card
of the Unified
Health System
Alice Firmino,
from the São Francisco
Health Care Center
in Salvador
Salvador developed creative strategies to ensure
health care to its street population
One of the difficulties detected by the WG
“In the logic of the secretariat, for example,
to ensure health care to children and ado-
patients can only receive medication if a
lescents on the streets in Salvador was the
computerized system authorizes them to,
fact that they had no ID documents, as re-
and only those with ID documents can be
quired by public health care facilities.
registered in it. We had to sit down and talk
The WG came up with a solution to this
with the managers of the system and discuss
problem, as reported by Maria do Socorro
the matter with those in charge of manag-
Farias Chaves, member of the municipal
ing the delivery of drugs to patients to find
STD/AIDS coordinating board of Salvador:
a way to ensure the access of this popula-
Challenges
tion to treatment and medication without
they had to show an ID card of the Uni-
showing any ID. In our initial discussions,
fied Health System (Cartão do SUS) to be
we were only thinking about street children
treated in a public health facility. This was
and adolescents, but we ended up discuss-
a requirement because, when we received
ing the need to ensure the same right to the
a patient, we had to enter his or her data
homeless population at large.”
in the lab system to be authorized by it to
Thanks to these discussions, people in
collect a blood sample for testing and send
need of medical care don’t have to show any
a delivery man to pick it up. We discussed
ID to enter a health facility in Salvador any
this matter with the IT department of the
longer. Access to prescribed drugs is now
secretariat and created a form that can be
available to this population. “We had the
filled out for the undocumented popula-
same discussion with laboratory staff, as
tion. In this case, we don’t enter the data in
for these children and adolescents to have
the automated system, as the form needs
a diagnosis they had to undergo extensive
to be filled out manually, but what matters
testing and medical examinations. And
is that it allows them to receive treatment.
they also had to show an ID to be tested and
It’s not easy, but we need to create internal
examined. It was then agreed that a specific
strategies to at least ensure medical treat-
box would be included in the computer-
ment to this population,” Alice argues,
ized form to register this undocumented
adding that this discussion has even been
population. These are examples that much
broadened. “We are also making an effort
depends on developing the right links and
to hold similar discussions wherever we go,
actions, that by establishing the right links
in all the events held by the secretariat.”
and organizing health care services we can
be successful,” celebrates Maria do Socorro.
Alice Firmino, from the São Francisco Health Center, explains the progress
made. “To be seen and treated at a health
facility, all patients have to be registered
in the general computerized system of the
health care network. And they can only
register if they provide an ID number,” she
says. “After a lot of discussions, we established a procedure whereby we can now
register these patients,” she observes. “Our
main difficulty was to have them tested for
HIV or hepatitis, for example. In the past,
Street child in Salvador
As was already
happening in São
Paulo and Rio de
Janeiro, health
care facilities in
Salvador began
to facilitate
the access of
people living
on the streets
to medication,
tests and medical
consultations
{ 73 }
{ 74 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Sensitization of professionals
Educator Elizabeth Oliveira, coordinator of the Excola Project in Rio de Janeiro, raises another important point about the assistance provided by the
public health care network to these children and adolescents. “They are even
mistreated. They are seen as a problem. When they seek assistance at a health
facility unaccompanied by an adult, they are quickly taken to the emergency
room to remove the problem from sight. Situations like this have been reported even by some health facilities themselves: ‘We deal with their problem
right away for them to leave as quickly as possible’,” Elizabeth reports.
According to Cláudio Andrés Barria Mancilla, one of the coordinators of the NGO If This Street Were Mine in Rio de Janeiro, the work of
sensitizing health care professionals is extremely important. “We’ve heard
pediatricians say: ‘I don’t see these ‘minors’ in my office because they
could infect it. I have to protect the other children I see.’ But naturalizing
this separation between ‘minors’ and other children is an act of violence.
There’s a need for
a more humane
approach, one that
takes into account
the specific features
of this vulnerable
population
So when we begin to sensitize these professionals to the problem, we tell
them there is no such thing as ‘minors’. There are only children. They cry
and begin to change their attitude. But these changes are not restricted to
individual changes. We address the issue of the entry point, of basic rights.
There are many processes involved,” he says.
Psychologist Sandra Santos, a consultant for the human rights of children and adolescents in Salvador, also sustains that health care professionals need to be trained and sensitized. “Even though these children have the
right to be treated and monitored, we still face difficulties with the govern-
Sandra Santos,
psychologist,
from Salvador
ment in this regard. We need to adopt a more humane approach, one that
takes into account the specific features of this vulnerable population, whose
basic rights to food or decent housing have not been ensured,” says Sandra.
“The requirement that they must show an ID to be seen by a doctor in a
health facility is another major problem. Health care officials should receive
these children and refer them to where they can get an ID made, which is
quite simple. You just have to refer them to a Guardianship Council with
the information that they are undocumented. They should do this because,
among other reasons, health care professionals have the obligation to report
cases of violence, and this is a violation of rights,” he sustains.
Unfortunately, prejudice against street children and adolescents prevails in the daily attitudes of many professionals of public health facilities
in many different areas – a behavior that leads these boys and girls to
feel increasingly excluded and invisible to society. Breaking these barri-
Challenges
ers and networking to assist this population was one of the main tasks
of the Working Groups in the four cities. Weaving this network to assist
children and adolescents on the streets was a project wrought with difficulties at different moments. In Salvador, for example, a multidisciplinary
professional team called Captains of the Sands was set up to assist boys
and girls addicted to crack, who are even more fragile. “With a routine of
activities that include ongoing discussions with the social health network,
the Captains of the Sands team faces constant difficulties in its efforts to
build co-responsibilities,” says psychologist Margaret Leonelli, the team’s
technical supervisor.
Red tape hindrances
According to the psychologist, the shortcomings of the social health network
become clearer in emergency situations. “When, for example, the Captains of
the Sands team was approached by a teenager with signs of beating, it took
all the necessary measures to refer him to the State General Hospital. It got in
touch with the Guardianship Council to arrange for his hospitalization and subsequent discharge and referral to a shelter. However, a council member refused
to take any action arguing that it was not his job to do that,” she recalls. “After
several rounds of negotiations involving the Guardianship Council, the General
Hospital, judicial officials (for issuing his hospital and shelter admission forms),
and the Public Prosecutor’s Office, the adolescent, in a complete turnaround,
returned to the streets alone after being discharged from the hospital at 10 p.m.,
as he himself reported,” regrets Margaret Leonelli.
The example provided by the psychologist is emblematic and shows the need
for intersectoral actions to improve the health care available to street children and
adolescents. The experiences of the Working Group showed the need to invest in
training all the professionals of the health care network, which is not always an
easy task. Maria do Socorro Farias Chaves, municipal coordinator for STD/AIDS in
Salvador, explains that providing such training is difficult. “We had a high number
of withdrawals and of professionals refusing to work according to this logic,” she
regrets. “One point we need to reflect on is that this population, which we refer to
as an “invisible” population (its visibility is mainly determined by episodes of violence), is one nobody wants to work with. Many professionals of the public health
care network resist the idea of working with these children and adolescents. Our
difficulty lies in human resources, in working with people. We provided several
trainings to try and change this scenario. In our first workshop, designed for professionals, there were many withdrawals,” says Maria do Socorro.
{ 75 }
Children
assisted by
the Conceição
Macedo Charity
Institution play
ring around
the rosie in
Salvador
{ 78 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Social worker Sandra Mendonça, from the Salvador WG, says that everything went well in the training workshops until the participants were told
that they would be working with child and adolescent drug users on the
streets. “In the collective imagination of these professionals, street boys and
girls are synonym with theft, robbery, etc. As soon as they were told that
they might be working with this audience, many participants abandoned the
workshop. Despite all the obstacles, however, we can say that the results
of the trainings were positive,” says Sandra, mentioning another important
aspect: Completing the training does not mean that the professionals are
ready to intervene and act as sensitive multipliers with this audience. They
can be exposed to a lot of information without necessarily absorbing it and
becoming multipliers sufficiently sensitized to the plight of these children
and adolescents and their needs.
Prejudice against
street boys and
girls is also present
in schools and
even in their
own families
Prejudice even in their families
Jocimar Alves Borges, the executive coordinator of the NGO Pé no Chão in
Recife, points out that prejudice against street boys and girls is also present
in schools and even in their own families. “The idea of our NGO was to focus our art education work on two areas: Bringing the children back to their
families and back to school. As we implemented the proposal, however, we
faced many difficulties. The first one was that prejudice was a major hurdle.
We said: let’s begin to bring the children back to school. And we worked with
Jocimar Borges,
from the NGO
Pé no Chão in Recife
them on the streets to arouse in them the desire to go back to school,” says Jocimar. “But when we visited the schools they could go back to, we found out
that there was another problem to be addressed: they wanted to go back to
school, but the schools didn’t want them. We then had to prepare the schools
to receive them. We got in touch with their staff, their principals, to explain to
them the long and difficult work we had carried out to persuade them back
to school. We noticed that there was a lot of prejudice against them in the
schools. When they did return, they were not seen in a good light,” he adds.
The coordinator of the NGO Pé no Chão further reported that difficulties
were also faced with their families. “We had to discuss the desire of these
children and adolescents to return home with their families, so that they
would welcome and accept them back. Initially, we were met with a lot of
resistance from their families. We had to work with them much in the same
way we did with the children. The life stories of their mothers and fathers are
similar to theirs. We used a methodological approach with the families similar
to the one applied to the children. When we took the children to a museum,
Challenges
we would take their mothers there the following week. The needs and difficulties of the children were the same ones experienced by their families.
But through art education, we broke the barriers of prejudice little by little,”
says Jocimar Alves Borges.
To fight prejudice in a more systematic and comprehensive way, the
NGO Pé no Chão created the Eco da Periferia (echoes from the outskirts)
project. The project consists in performances done by the boys and girls assisted by the NGO at 15-day intervals in public spaces in Recife. They dance,
play percussion instruments, and sing rap songs. “This project was developed
to provoke a socio-cultural dialogue between the children and society with
the aim of fighting the prejudice that much of society has against these boys
and girls. The population largely associates the communities where these
children come from with violence and drug abuse. We want to deconstruct
this ‘prejudice’ by showing that they can produce and reproduce interesting things that are culturally and aesthetically beautiful,” explains Aldir Rodrigues, one of the coordinators of the NGO.
Street child
playing on the
streets in
the Arruda
community
in Recife
{ 79 }
{ 80 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Music workshop
of the Axé Project
in Salvador
Besides the need to train professionals who are sensitive to this cause
and to fight society’s prejudice against street children and adolescents on the
streets, the many lessons learned by the Working Groups include that of the
need to adopt integral, sustainable and effective public policies to assist them.
The keyword for the success of the actions is, again, intersectorality. According
to the Peruvian sociologist and technical consultant to the project Responding
to the Vulnerabilities of Youths on the Streets to HIV/AIDS, Manuel Manrique,
this reality must be tackled from the perspective of the “integral development
and universal rights of children and adolescents.” In his opinion, the first step
for this purpose is becoming familiar with the living conditions of these boys
and girls in depth. This knowledge will be the basis for implementing public
policies that break away from the tradition of partial and momentary interventions that begin under one government and end when a new one is elected.
Key partnerships
In the process of working to promote synchronized actions among the various
sectors that deal with children and adolescents on the streets, many challenges
Challenges
{ 81 }
were faced and overcome. Although the Salvador WG, for example, secured
the participation of its audience to a large extent, Maria do Socorro Farias
Chaves, municipal coordinator for STD/AIDS, estimates that more involvement
was lacking in some areas. “In this work, we saw that some partnerships are
essential. We managed to attract some partners, but not others. One of the key
partnerships we managed to establish was one with technical departments of
mental health facilities. But there are, for example, programs for children and
adolescents being implemented by the Health Care Secretariat that we couldn’t
attract to the Working Group”, stressed Maria do Socorro. “Their participation is
crucial. First of all, we are dealing with children and adolescents. And if these
programs are working from the perspective of implementing the provisions of
the Statute on Children and Adolescents, it is only fair that they joined us in
this process. So the question remains: how we can develop external partnerships if our internal ones are still fragile?” she observes. “Despite our efforts, we
couldn’t involve the Municipal Social Action Secretariat. We want these children
to be assisted in their social needs now, as we believe we can take care of ensuring the health care they need,” she adds.
Sandra Mendonça, a social worker with the São Francisco Health Care Center and the Captains of the Sands project in Salvador, underscores the lack of
political priority attached to implementing joint actions. “It’s not that public officials and secretaries are not open to the idea of working with us, taking part in
In this work, we
saw that some
partnerships
are essential. We
managed to attract
some partners,
but not others
our actions, listening to the proposal, appreciating our work. But no consistent
and concerted framework has been established at the macro level so far. Political continuity and the clear notion that the service is important are still lacking.
It’s a very slow, painful process. When we manage to get things going, a highranking official leaves and we are back to square one,” she laments.
In Rio de Janeiro, where a network was already active before the WG was
set up, progress was faster, although the process was also very difficult at times.
According to journalist Márcia Gatto, from the Rio Criança Network, established
in 2001, the WG had the merit of linking the actions of NGOs to those of the government. “As NGOs, it was fundamental for us to develop partnerships with governmental organizations in this work. And the Ministry of Health was very helpful
in establishing such links. Building these partnerships was important to improve
the care provided to street children and adolescents. But it was a difficult process.
Technical experts from the State and Municipal Heal Care Secretariats participating in the WG made a huge effort, but we were not very much supported by
higher-ranking officials or health facilities initially. However, it is undeniable that
we were successful in some aspects,” Márcia observes.
Maria do Socorro
Farias Chaves,
from the Salvador WG
{ 82 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Protagonism and cinema
Testimonials on STD/AIDS prevention from locals in the
communities have been filmed in documentaries shown outdoors
The project’s
main goal is
to reveal the
perceptions of the
communities on
STD/AIDS
In Recife, the NGO Pé no Chão, which
face STD/AIDS and how to break the
is represented in the WG, strength-
prejudice against people who have
ened the STD/AIDS prevention work
these diseases.
and the fight against prejudice by pro-
The documentaries produced by the
ducing videos in which the children
project have been shown in the com-
themselves and their families play
munities of Arruda, Santo Amaro, Chão
a central role. Called Cine Preven-
de Estrelas and Água Fria, focusing on
ção (prevention cinema), the project
the topic “Preventing prejudice” among
was born from a suggestion made by
people living in the outskirts of large
mothers of the children which the
cities. People from different languages
NGO embraced. “A mother said: ‘We
and social, political, cultural and re-
see a lot of campaigns on TV about
ligious backgrounds, such as pastors,
many different things, but we never
local spiritual leaders, nurses, doctors,
see our faces. Don’t we have anything
teens, community leaders, people with
to say?’” recalls Jocimar Alves Borges,
HIV and others were interviewed.
a coordinator of the NGO. That was
Through the videos produced by
when we had the idea of producing a
the Cine Prevenção project, people
video with testimonials on STD/AIDS
could express their knowledge and
prevention from locals in the commu-
doubts about this issue. Before the
nity. The documentaries are 15-min-
documentaries are shown, boys and
ute long and are shown outdoors in
girls assisted by the NGO Pé no Chão
the communities assisted by the NGO.
stage maracatu, breakdance, hip hop,
The Cine Prevenção project has
and afoxé dance performances.
shown these documentaries in four
In the opinion of Jocimar Alves
districts of Recife already. The proj-
Borges, the project was extremely well
ect’s main goal is to show how the
received. “They like the documentaries
communities perceive the subject.
because they see themselves in the com-
The idea is to allow them to tell the
munity. They see someone who lives next
population, in their own words, how
door to them talking on the screen. Re-
they protect themselves from and
actions in each location where the docu-
Challenges
Video being
mentaries are shown are quite similar.
say’...” says Borges. According to him, the
shown in the
Suddenly, they see a woman whom they
idea is to expand the project to other lo-
community of
see every day in their communities and
cations and public schools as well. “We
Arruda, Recife
nobody wants to hear. But then they see
want the Cine Prevenção project to gain
her on the screen speaking to them and
wings and to be implemented in every
they think: ‘This woman has so much to
little place in this city and state,” he says.
{ 83 }
{ 84 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Afro hairdressing
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
and prevention
workshop
organized by the
NGO Excola, in
Rio de Janeiro
Elizabeth Oliveira, coordinator of the NGO Excola, also in Rio de Janeiro, stresses
that the first success of the WG was that of developing coordinated actions involving
the government and civil society. “It all happened as a result of the trainings delivered
to both the street children and adolescents and to health care professionals. We also
made progress in promoting a more equitable access to public health facilities. We
observed this progress in at least three health care units. They began to treat the boys
and girls differently. I think that this was our greatest achievement: we promoted
discussions about equity issues inside the health care units,” Elizabeth observed. In
her opinion, there are still many challenges ahead, one of which is designing specific
public policies for this group in relation to STD/AIDS testing procedures. “We need
to define strategies to persuade health facilities that these people must be diagnosed
timely and referred to appropriate health care units,” Elizabeth says. The other challenge she mentioned is that of ensuring the continuity of the actions taken by the
WG and expanding their scope to cover the entire state of Rio de Janeiro, an idea
supported by the State STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Management Board.
“The WG is a great experience in promoting a dialogue between the state and
civil society around joint actions, beyond just demanding that the state fulfill its
duties. It is a space for dialogue, for exchanging experiences and defining public
policies for children and adolescents on the streets,” says social worker Carolina
Cruz, representative of the Municipal Health Care Secretariat in the Rio WG. She
believes that the WG played its role with great skill and is now in a new phase.
“In my opinion, this WG was created to advocate for the inclusion of this issue in
Challenges
the agenda of public health policies, and it fulfilled this purpose. Today, we have
a team to do this, we are carrying out actions in shelters, NGOs are welcome to
discuss the issue as a benchmark for the city of Rio de Janeiro,” Carolina says. “But
I believe every working group has a beginning, middle and end. We don’t have to
depend solely on the WG to continue to meet. The process is not over, the WG has
been reconfigured. It is eternal, you have to keep walking, acting,” she says.
In Rio de Janeiro, the WG strengthened the struggle of organizations that were
already working in a network and secured some achievements, including the project Health on the Move on the Streets, designed to provide primary health, mental,
and dental care to people living on the streets (see the section “Family Health Care
Program for the Street Population”). Also as a result of this social mobilization process, Rio de Janeiro became the first Brazilian city to have a municipal policy specifically designed for street children and adolescents (see the section “Innovative
policy”). Now, the challenge of social actors is implementing this policy. Another
mission of the network is to extend the actions to the entire state.
The importance of networking
Elizabeth Oliveira, from the NGO Excola, believes that strengthening the networking
process even more and discussing the issue more comprehensively is fundamental.
“Health care agencies cannot do it all alone. And neither can social assistance agencies. We need an integrated system, involving shelters, different institutions, a database
of the life trajectories of these children,” she says. “The WG played an initial role in
strengthening these relations, but now they need to be expanded and managed at
Strengthening
the networking
process
even more is
fundamental.
Health care
agencies cannot
do it all alone.
And neither can
social assistance
agencies
higher levels and depend less on the piecemeal actions of professionals,” she observes.
Pedagogue and university professor Marcos Veltri, who was the representative
of the municipality of São Paulo in the WG of that city, points out that the lack of
involvement of the education sector was a major gap in this process. “Why did the
education sector fail to participate in the process? It was invited to take part in it on
several occasions. But its response was a more traditional one. Education only begins
after a child is enrolled in school. The large majority of these children attended school
at some point in their lives,” argues Veltri. “Which strategies should have been used
to involve the education sector? Perhaps those we used were not the most appropriate ones. It seems that our discourse didn’t work at that moment. It was as if we only
wanted to discuss formal education. Thinking about it today, I wonder: what did we
want from the education sector at that time? What did we truly want it to do about
those children and adolescents who were already on the streets? And which preventive actions could be taken in favor of those who were attending school? Perhaps the
strategy wasn’t clear,” he analyzes.
Elizabeth Oliveira,
from the NGO Excola,
in Rio de Janeiro
{ 85 }
{ 86 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Recommendations for assisting children,
adolescents and youths on the streets
Books whose authors include members of the São Paulo WG provide
useful information and recommendations for professionals
In December 2007, the Municipal STD/
Access to prevention mechanisms by
AIDS Program of São Paulo published
street children, adolescents and youths
the book Adolescentes e Jovens: Relatos e
and by professionals engaged in educa-
Indicações with a full chapter devoted to
tion projects on the streets should be
the experience of the Tangram Project.
facilitated.
Written by Marcos Veltri, technical
Admission/counseling procedures in
advisor to the Municipal STD/AIDS Pro-
health facilities specializing in treating
gram of São Paulo and member of the São
STD/AIDS patients should be reviewed
Paulo WG, the text provides important
to facilitate access to them.
recommendations for actions to reduce
Swift procedures should be ensured
vulnerability to STD/AIDS among street
for HIV testing and the scheduling
children, adolescents and youths based
of medical consultations and exami-
on project’s partial results. These include:
nations, so as to treat STD patients,
The staff and professionals of local Basic Health Care Units (UBS) should be
sensitized to ensure, as a matter of top
priority, the right to health of street
children, adolescents and youths.
The right to health care of boys and
girls, especially when unaccompanied by adults or without ID documents, should be ensured.
One of the chapters of
the book is devoted to the
experience of the Tangram
Project in São Paulo
The full publication is available for download at
http://www10.prefeitura.sp.gov.br/dstaids/novo_site/images/fotos/Adolescentes.pdf
Challenges
monitor HIV/AIDS cases, and sup-
the needs and limitations of profession-
port those who need antiretroviral
als of public health and social care ser-
treatment appropriately, relying on the
vices designed for children and families
assistance of a multidisciplinary team.
at social risk2. These include:
Specific health actions should be
There are publications
that provide
recommendations
for actions to reduce
vulnerability to
STD/AIDS among street
children, adolescents
and youths
planned for families of children at
social risk.
Spaces should be created for assisting caregivers.
Weekly meetings should be held to
discuss and monitor the evolution of
cases at different levels.
Teams should work in an integrated fashion.
A protocol should be established to
Another book, called Crianças em
ensure the monitoring of children at
Situação de Risco Social: Limites e Ne-
social risk.
cessidades da Atuação do Profissional de
Social risk criteria should be discussed
Saúde, published in 2007 by the Medical
with all the staff of the (health) facil-
Sciences School of the Holy House of
ity to ensure standardized conducts
Mercy of São Paulo, Technical Unit for
among all professionals.
Child and Adolescent Health Care of
Quicker feedback should be ensured
the Municipal Health Care Secretariat
on referrals of children and adolescents
of São Paulo and Quixote Project1, also
to Children’s and Juvenile Courts.
used inputs from the São Paulo WG
An official partnership should be
and provides suggestions for improve-
established between schools and
ments in the health care provided to
health facilities to promote full and
children and adolescents.
priority attention to children at so-
These suggestions were based on a
two-year research study that identified
1 The text was based on scientific findings included in the
report of a research study (Phase II) called Crianças em
Situação de Risco Social, Limites e Necessidades da Atuação
do Profissional de Saúde (children at social risks, limitations
and needs of health care professionals), carried out with
the financial support from the Research Support Foundation
of the State of São Paulo (FAPESP) - Public Policy
Research Program. Authors: Nivaldo Carneiro Junior,
Bettina Grajcer, Graziela Bedoian, Maria José Siqueira,
Lígia Miranda Azevedo and Lucília Nunes da Silva.
cial risk, including the joint definition of health policies.
2 T
he methodology adopted in this research study is called
“action research,” which is sort of a social research tool that,
according to the authors, focuses on generating solutions
for practical problems and on the ability of professionals to
build skills. The methodology included the establishment of a
working group made up of public health and social assistance
professionals from the area within the jurisdiction of the Sé
city hall and charities operating in the region, such as the Holy
House of Mercy of São Paulo and the Children’s Pastoral, as
well as the holding of awareness-raising workshops.
{ 87 }
{ 88 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Another very important discussion to be held as part of the process of
the Working Groups is the need to avoid duplicity of actions - a challenge
inherent in networking. In this process, it is also crucial to clearly define the
roles of each of the actors involved, which according to the members of the
four groups is something that was not always done. Marcos Veltri stresses this
need: “We must always be careful to avoid overlapping of actions and duplication of resources and services. If there’s a local actor carrying out a certain
action, we should get in touch with him or her and assess the possibility of
implementing that existing action,” he observes, recalling that it is also of
great value to try and take advantage of collective spaces, such as the forums
for the defense of children and adolescents and other bodies with local, social and regional links. “We need to encourage meetings between local actors
working in different areas, such as in the areas of health care, education,
social assistance, sports, culture, housing, and development,” argues Veltri.
We must always
be careful to
avoid overlapping
of actions and
duplication of
resources and
services
Social worker Kátia Cilene Barbosa, former coordinator of the Joselito
Lopes shelter in São Paulo, recalls an important moment in the work of the
WG, when professionals from different areas were trained to work with
children and adolescents on the streets. “A crucial element of this training
was that it addressed the importance of networking, of integrating public
policies, of developing links between social assistance, health, education
policies... It was the first time that community health workers and social
protection agents attended a training course together. These two groups of
professionals work with the same population, but they usually don’t talk
Marcos Veltri,
from the São Paulo WG
with each other. For this reason, the moments these community-based,
high-level professionals sat together to talk about the work they were doing were extremely important,” Kátia recalls.
In the opinion of social educator Jorge Artur Canfield Floranni, who
represented the Municipal Social Assistance Secretariat in the São Paulo
WG, the group was successful in its actions. “The WG was successful in
its work, in the responsibilities assigned to each of its members and in the
complementariness of their actions. All of this was very important. The WG
truly made this intermingling of actions possible. It made it possible for
one action to include another. But we had no representatives from schools,
and one of our challenges now is to involve them,” he believes.
Institutional commitment
One of the difficulties faced by all the Working Groups was securing the
engagement of individuals and institutions in the process. The exit of
{ 89 }
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Challenges
Rodrigo Ferré, educator
some professionals who were very active in the WG affected the consis-
of the Quixote Project,
tency of its actions and even led to their discontinuity in some cases. The
with one of the
Salvador Working Group, for example, was very affected by the exit of
adolescents assisted
certain public officials. “Consolidating the process is extremely painful.
by the NGO in the
During the work of the WG, the Health Care Secretariat had four different
downtown area
secretaries in charge since 2005. Each time a new secretary took office,
of São Paulo
we had to present the project to him or her from scratch. And this was
very difficult. We began to question whether the WG was represented
by institutions or individuals, as we saw people joining it, believing in
its work, and then leaving,” observes Sandra Mendonça, a social worker
with the São Francisco Health Care Center and the Captains of the Sands
project in Salvador.
{ 90 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Innovative policy
Public policy in Rio de Janeiro sets out guidelines and
responsibilities for ensuring the rights of street boys and girls
The Municipal Council for the Rights
With the aim of enforcing these
of Children and Adolescents in Rio
rights and ensuring their actual ap-
de Janeiro (CMDCA-Rio) was the
plication, the policy sets out guide-
first body in Brazil to draw up and
lines and assigns institutional re-
approve, on June 22, 2009, a public
sponsibilities to the Municipal Social
policy for children and adolescents on
Assistance Secretariat, the Municipal
the streets.
Education Secretariat, the Special
The approval of the Municipal Pol-
Coordinating Board for the Chemi-
icy for Assisting Children and Adoles-
cal Addiction Prevention Policy, the
cents on the Streets of Rio de Janeiro
Municipal Secretariat for Sports and
resulted from a long joint work involv-
Recreation, the Municipal Health
ing civil society and the government
Care and Civil Defense Secretariat,
since it began to be drawn up in 2008,
Rio’s Municipal Guard, the Municipal
when a Joint Working Group was set
Sanitation Company (Comlurb), the
up composed of ten representatives of
Municipal Culture Secretariat, and
governmental and non-governmental
civil society organizations.
organizations
and
representatives
from seven other institutions.
The main objectives of the policy
are to “ensure the human rights of chil-
The guidelines for the Municipal
Health Care and Civil Defense Secretariat (SMSDC) determine that actions
must be taken to:
dren and adolescents on the streets”
I mprove the quality of and ensure
and to “promote and ensure dialogue
care to children and adolescents
and integration among different gov-
on the streets in all municipal
ernment agencies and civil society, as
health facilities through aware-
well as links between the Executive,
ness-raising, training, develop-
Legislative and Judiciary branches to
ment, and production of appro-
ensure the rights of children and ado-
priate materials.
lescents in the municipality of Rio de
E xpand and build the capacity of
Janeiro, especially children and adoles-
the teams of the Family Health Care
cents on the streets.”
and Community Agents programs to
Challenges
identify and address social vulnera-
Expand
and
strengthen
Mental
bility situations in a timely fashion.
Health Care teams - especially the
Ensure the inclusion of children
teams of the Psychosocial Care Cen-
and adolescents on the streets in
ter for Alcohol and Drugs (Caps-AD),
the Municipal Health Care Plan, in-
with the aim of coordinating and sup-
tegrating them into programs and
porting the actions of secretariats and
activities carried out by the Mu-
organizations working directly on the
nicipal Health Care and Civil De-
streets, community centers and insti-
fense Secretariat (SMSDC) through
tutional shelters.
cross-cutting actions, with a focus
on strengthening family and community ties, youth participation,
gender issues, health care for the
black population, drug use and
abuse, STD/AIDS prevention and
prevention of violence against
children and adolescents, especially sexual violence, violence within
One of the key
objectives of the
policy is to “ensure
the human rights
of children and
adolescents on
the streets”
one’s family, institutional violence
and violence resulting from the de-
Train the staff of emergency hospi-
nial of basic rights.
tals to provide adequate assistance
Train the staff of maternity wards
to this population.
to ensure the right to family and
Expand health care spaces where
communit y life, improv ing the
adolescents are the center of atten-
care provided in cases that may
tion (such as the Adolescentro, an
require institutional sheltering,
SMSDC program), involving street
in partnership with the Rights As-
children and adolescents.
surance System.
Use different existing information
Carry out actions to prevent diseas-
collection tools to identify situa-
es such as STDs, AIDS, tuberculo-
tions of violence against street chil-
sis, Hansen’s disease, viral hepati-
dren and adolescents.
tis and co-infections in partnership
Promote research in Public Health
with NGOs that are already work-
to provide inputs for analyzing the
ing directly on the streets, with the
health status of this population.
aim of reducing the vulnerability to
Create Family Health Care teams to
these diseases.
assist the homeless population.
{ 91 }
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
{ 92 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Educator of the
Quixote Project plays
Despite these considerations, Sandra reckons that some advances promot-
dominoes with
ed by the WG were extremely important and largely made possible by the
a street child in
support provided by public officials committed to and touched by the group’s
downtown São Paulo
work. This opinion is shared by Eliane Rodrigues, a social worker with the Axé
Project. “Sometimes, government agencies work better or worse depending on
the officer in charge. There is no doubt that we experienced difficult moments,
such as when a sensitive officer was replaced by another one who didn’t understand the subject and was not willing to make the effort to understand it,”
Eliane observes. Actually, these observations clearly show that when it comes to
implementing and executing public policies in any area, apart from the passion
and engagement of the professionals involved, it is crucial that a solid culture
of ensuring the continuity of actions exists in the institutions concerned. If this
culture exists, the quality of policies is not so much affected when high-ranking
officers of government agencies are replaced by others.
Challenges
Therefore, the Working Groups must also play a role in ensuring institutional involvement in this cause by making sure public organizations assume
a long-term commitment to preventing STD/AIDS among children and adolescents on the streets. Maria do Socorro Farias Chaves, the municipal STD/AIDS
coordinator in Salvador, reports the hurdles faced in this crusade. “When you
actually start a project like this, you realize what a huge job lies ahead. You
cannot rely only on the coordination of the STD/AIDS program. You need to involve many more actors. And when you realize the size of the actions and activities required, your legs begin to fail you,” she laments. “In 2006, we managed
to bring together professionals from different areas for reflection in a meeting
for public officials. It was attended, among others, by police officers and highranking officials from the Public Prosecutor’s Office, from juvenile courts, from
health care services, and from social assistance and educational agencies. They
were sensitized to the problem and expressed the desire to contribute to addressing it. But halfway through the process they were not as enthusiastic. In
such cases, it is the role of the WG to bring them back, call them again, sensitize
them yet again. It’s a difficult task,” says Maria do Socorro.
“We would ask them repeatedly: is this an institutional working group or
a group of people? Are the persons committed to the project, those who were
already engaged in this work, who get involved in it, the ones who should
provide the answers? Will the project move forward when institutional actors
leave the institutions they used to represent?” asks Sandra Mendonça. “We
almost never got any answers. Many representatives of institutions who were
with us in the beginning left. Even considering the difficulties faced by these
organizations, such as insufficient number of staff, we are always making an
effort to attract new partners,” she concludes.
The experience of the Working Groups over the last few years has shown
that progress is possible despite the daily difficulties and complexities of the
realities faced by boys and girls on the streets. Some prejudices were overcome, taboos were broken, professionals were sensitized, organizations were
attracted to join this fight. However, much remains to be done to ensure a
better quality of life to this population and assert all of its rights. Networking,
expanding and strengthening partnerships between civil society and government, ensuring the continuity of the actions, adopting inter-sectoral approaches,
and having the political will to change this reality are fundamental ingredients in this struggle.
* The names were changed to protect the identity of the adolescents.
{ 93 }
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Capoeira class
at the Casa
Taiguara
in São Paulo
ADVANCES
Main achievements
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
In its effort to ensure the rights of children and
adolescents on the streets, the pilot Street Boys and
Girls project won major victories, such as including
the topic of STD/AIDS prevention in the public policy
agenda and in the agenda of social organizations
and promoting closer relations between civil society
and government. Even though measuring this work
is difficult, members of the working groups in the
four cities covered by the project believe that it
brought huge benefits for these boys and girls
Child assisted by the team of the Captains of the Sand project in Salvador
{ 96 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Since the age of 7, Adriano*, 17, has been attending activities offered by the
NGO Pé no Chão, which works with street children and adolescents in Recife.
During this period, Adriano* underwent changes in his everyday life – and, according to him, for the better. Like other boys and girls in his community, he
learned a lot about sexuality and STD/AIDS. “I learned how to protect myself
and about the prejudice people have toward those living with the virus and
what we should do about it,” he says. The benefits in his daily life, however,
went beyond these lessons. “Were it not for the work of the Pé no Chão project
in the Arruda community, I’m sure I would be facing another reality. I would either be dealing drugs or using them. And I’m not talking about myself only, but
also about other children that participated in the project who were and still are
exposed to negative influences,” the teenager ponders. “I can only say that the
Pé no Chão project means the world to me in terms of my learning at school,
my personal life, my professional life,” concludes Adriano*.
The changes Adriano* and so many other street boys and girls experienced
in their daily lives were made possible by the tireless work of NGOs and the government, which networked in groups to carry out STD/AIDS prevention actions
for this audience. The challenges they faced in this work were huge, but they secured significant advances, as can be clearly perceived in Adriano’s* life in Recife.
One of the main achievements of the Working Groups was that of raising
the awareness of children and adolescents on the streets to sexuality-related
issues and on how to prevent STD/AIDS. According to Elizabeth Oliveira,
coordinator of the NGO Excola in Rio de Janeiro, which is carrying out an
important project aimed at girls, female children and adolescents absorbed
well the lessons they were taught about prevention and the need to make
their partners use a condom regularly. “The girls replicate this knowledge to
others in the same community. They actually become multipliers of prevention messages. They are concerned to the point of, for example, giving out
condoms to other girls,” reports Elizabeth. “I can’t tell how many of them
didn’t use condoms before and are using them now. But I do know that they
are much more informed about this issue today,” she says.
Debate on rights
Another important achievement of the project was including the topic in the
public policy agenda and also in the agenda of social organizations, as highlighted by Márcia Gatto, from the Rio Criança Network of Rio de Janeiro. “The
main benefit is that we can take this discussion to other institutions, even if
they don’t have representatives in the Working Group. The important thing is
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
Advances
{ 97 }
Street adolescent
makes a drawing during
an activity offered
by the NGO Pé no Chão
in the Arruda
community in Recife
that we involving various institutions in this debate, increasing our chances of
raising the profile of the issue,” Marcia believes. Apart from promoting deeper
discussions on the subject within the network of NGOs and governmental
organizations, the working groups also managed to talk about the rights of
children and adolescents with the professionals who attended their training
events and with the street boys and girls themselves.
“We addressed the need for them to assume a leading role in relation to the
topic, and not only within this or that institution. They took part in joint strategies
several times, such as in a ludic conference1. This has always been encouraged”,
says Kátia Cilene Barbosa, a former coordinator of the Joselito Lopes shelter in
São Paulo. “Policies must take into account the perception of these boys and girls
as citizens. Just telling them that there is a Statute on Children and Adolescents
doesn’t make them feel part of it. Raising the awareness of boys and girls to their
rights does not mean that they will take ownership of them. That’s why ludic
conferences and other recreational forums are so important,” Kátia says. Ana Lívia
Adriano, a professor at the Catholic University of São Paulo (PUC) and a former
coordinator of the Joselito shelter, stresses that boys and girls began to understand the Statute not only as a law, but as something they are entitled to in their
daily lives. “The children and adolescents also see the capoeira and graffiti classes
that we give and the videos we produce not as tasks, but as opportunities to express themselves. This is a very positive result of our work,” observes Ana Lívia.
1 Ludic conferences are meetings in which boys and girls express their ideas and needs. Their objective is ensuring the participation
of children and adolescents as citizens, as provided for in the Statute on Children and Adolescents.
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
{ 98 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Paulo Soares, 18,
learns about STD/AIDS
prevention in IT classes
at the Casa Taiguara
in São Paulo
Psychologist Sandra Santos, a consultant for the human rights of children and
adolescents in Salvador, says the WG played a key role in discussions with government agencies and civil society on the importance of asserting these rights and
ensuring their access to health care, particularly in connection with STD/AIDS.
“The Center for the Defense of Children and Adolescents (Cedeca) in Salvador
provided major contributions in this process by promoting debates with public
institutions on how to effectively guarantee the rights of children and adolescents.
We even included this discussion in a course designed for police officers working
in the Sanitary District of the Historical Center area of Salvador,” reports Sandra.
Another achievement of the Salvador WG was that of promoting reflections
on the rights of children and adolescents in universities, such as in study groups
and law schools. “It is a non-existing discipline, even in law schools. Even when
it is included in the curriculum, the Statute is an optional discipline. Attendee
participation in the course was excellent, and the topic began to be addressed
in university study groups,” Sandra reports. Comprehensive discussions on rights
also marked the work of the São Paulo WG. As the representative of the Technical
Child and Adolescent Health Department of the Municipal Health Care Secretariat
of São Paulo, psychologist Lucília Nunes da Silva took this discussion to her institution, and it was not restricted to sexual and reproductive rights, but included
reflections on how to assist children and adolescents on the streets.
Advances
{ 99 }
Strengthened children and adolescents
Addressing the rights of street boys and girls in playful, dynamic and creative
ways was a correct strategy that resulted in the empowerment of this audience. Paul Soares, an 18-year-old youth who attends activities at the Casa
Taiguara in São Paulo, is an emblematic case of how this approach empowered children and adolescents. He sees positive changes in his daily life.
“The first thing I learned was the importance of education. I also learned
that happiness is for everyone. After being admitted to the Casa Taiguara, I
started thinking. When I was younger, I was terrible. I wanted every woman
I saw, and I mean every one of them. Then I learned that this is not exactly
the way things should be,” says Paulo, who loves his IT and DJing courses
and has made many friends at Casa Taiguara.
“I made friends, I chat with everybody. And I
draw whatever comes to my mind. My drawing (on the right) is like Paradise: you see the
sun, birds, a playground, a house. I want my
family to see that I changed my life,” he says.
Geraldo Junior Travassos Arruda, dubbed Junior, 20, who today works as a multiplier with the
NGO Childhope in Rio de Janeiro, is also an example of how art education can change the reality of street children and adolescents. He used to
Copy
live on the streets and says he learned key lessons
in recent years. “What I have learned most is the
importance of respecting others, of being polite,
Drawing by
you know?” he says. “I also learned that you must always wear a condom. Today,
Paulo Soares, 18,
no matter how hot a woman may be, for me it’s no condom, no sex. To make sex,
of Casa Taiguara
I will use a condom or she will. Preserving life is very important. Living is great. Being clean and tidy is good. Once people get used to being clean and tidy, they will
not want to change. They won’t want any other life. The best thing in the world is
to have clean and nice-smelling clothes waiting for me at home,” says Junior, who
wants other boys and girls on the streets to have the same experience.
Integration and exchange of experiences
The process of setting up the Working Groups also made it possible for organizations working with children and adolescents on the streets to engage in a rich
exchange of ideas and impressions. “It was an interesting experience. The staff of
the Social Assistance and Citizenship Institute (Iasc) and of the NGO Pé no Chão,
{ 100 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
for example, were experienced with working with street boys and girls, but not
with STD/AIDS prevention. We were experienced with prevention projects, but
not with this audience. Therefore, we were able to contribute with one another,
share knowledge, add contributions,” assessed psychologist Bethânia Cunha, a
technical expert from the STD/AIDS program of Pernambuco state, referring to
the results of training workshops held in Recife. “Our contribution to the WG
consisted in disseminating the practice we had developed over the years in our
institution, focusing on children, their families, and their communities as subjects, as active agents in building this information and process,” says Jocimar
Alves Borges, executive coordinator of the NGO Pé no Chão.
On the other hand, the work in the WG made it possible for the Pé no
Chão project to strengthen its STD/AIDS prevention actions, as Jocimar Borges explains. “The institution already had a clear idea of the need to promote
STD/AIDS prevention and awareness-raising actions. The WG made us feel
The process of
setting up the
Working Groups
also made it
possible for
organizations
working with
children and
adolescents on the
streets to engage
in a rich exchange
of ideas and
impressions
more stimulated and we launched a project called Cine Prevenção to address
the issue by eliminating prejudices,” says Borges (Read more about the Cine
Prevenção project in the chapter Challenges).
Before the Working Group was set up, the prevention activities carried
out by the NGO Pé no Chão were rather sporadic. Today, they have become
routine activities. Psychologist Tânia Costa Duplatt, from the Isabel Souto
State Center for Adolescent Care (Cradis) of Salvador, also stresses the importance of the exchange of ideas between the organizations and considers
that the participation of professionals from different fields in the network
was a major achievement. “This is the most interesting aspect of the project: the joint work of these professionals. And it was important to raise the
awareness of community health agents to the fact that the streets are also
their territory, not only the homes they visit in their work. The agents began
to assist people on the streets,” Tânia reports. “Apart from delivering training
events based on contents specified by the Ministry of Health, we also had a
rich exchange of experiences and information. For example, the Axé Project,
which pioneered the work with the street population, taught us how to approach people on the streets. The Harm Reduction Alliance also shared its
experience in this area with us. This was extremely important, especially for
the health agents,” Tânia stresses.
In Salvador, the Working Group adopted a system of its own to lend more
effectiveness to its activities. It held evaluation workshops with its members periodically, in the form of conversation circles. This methodology often allowed
for necessary adjustments to be made in its activities.
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Human Images
Educator of the
Axé Project talks
with a street boy
in Salvador
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
{ 102 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Professionals
of the Captains
of the Sands team
approach street
children in
Salvador
Captains of the Sand: special attention
to children addicted to crack
A multidisciplinary team set up by the mental health coordinating board of the
Municipal Health Care Secretariat is one of the successes of the Salvador WG
The establishment of the Captains of the
users) was, without any doubt, one of the
Sands team by the mental health coordi-
main successes of the Salvador WG. “The
nating board of the Municipal Health Care
discussions held in the Working Group
Secretariat of Salvador to assist socially
encouraged us to get in touch with the
vulnerable children and adolescents (most
Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) to talk
of whom live on the streets and are crack
about the need to establish a structure
Advances { 103 }
to assist children addicted to crack in the
more experienced group of the project was
Pelourinho district, which in the end led
then assigned to observe these children in
to the establishment of the team,” says
the field. When it was confirmed that the
social worker Eliane Gomes Rodrigues
situation was as described by the educators,
from the Axé Project, one of the founders
the coordinators of the Axé Project sent a
of the Salvador WG. “This WG forum also
letter to the Public Prosecutor’s Office and
led the São Francisco Health Care Cen-
to all the competent authorities of Salvador
ter to reconsider its methods and devise
and of the state of Bahia responsible for
alternative ways to facilitate the assistan-
children and adolescents informing them
ce provided to street boys and girls,” she
about these facts and placing the NGO at
adds. According to Eliane, as this issue was
their disposal for any partnership,” says
discussed within the WG, the health care
Marle Macedo.
center made adjustments in its services
Based on these facts, the Public
and took this discussion to other forums
Prosecutor’s Office took formal measures
as well. And this was another gain: the in-
that led to the signing of a Term of Con-
clusion of the topic in its agenda for more
duct Adjustment between the mayor and
comprehensive discussions.
the Office, under which the Captains of the
The process that led to the establish-
Sands teams was set up. “This initiative is an
ment of the Captains of the Sands team be-
example of how a civil society organization
gan in 2007, as sociologist Marle de Oliveira
should deal with a crisis situation, pressing
Macedo, from the Axé Project, explains:
the state at different levels to take appro-
“In 2007, street educators told us they had
priate measures in defense of children and
noticed that the children and adolescents
adolescents,” observes the sociologist.
they had been keeping track of in the Pe-
The Captains of the Sands team was ini-
lourinho and Comércio neighborhoods,
tially made up of a social worker, a nurse, and
located in the Historical Center district of
a psychologist. Later, an educational psycho-
Salvador, had become heavily involved with
logist, a physical education teacher and other
crack cocaine, jeopardizing the actions of
technicians joined the team. “In the early
the Axé Project, as the drug deeply affected
stages, we engaged in a ‘pedagogical flirting’
their attention span,” the sociologist recalls.
process with the children. In this initial pha-
Under the influence of the drug, it was very
se, we relied on the assistance of educators of
difficult for them to hold a focused conser-
the Axé Project, who introduced these chil-
vation – the main working tool of the Axé
dren and adolescents to us. We got to know
Project. “When these educators told me
them little by little,” says social worker Maira
that this was happening, they had been
Carvalho Rios, a member of the multidisci-
observing the situation for a long time. A
plinary Captains of the Sands team.
The WG led
health facilities to
reconsider their
methods and
devise alternative
ways to facilitate
the assistance
provided to street
boys and girls
p
{ 104 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
p
Out of fear,
inexperience or
lack of technical
conditions, the
professionals
of these health
care services
adopted defensive
strategies to
reject them
Ana Pitta,
psychiatrist,
coordinator of the
Captains of the
Sand team
According to psychiatrist Ana Pitta,
infected with sexually transmitted disea-
coordinator of the team, the situation re-
ses. We explain to them how a person can
ported by the Axé Project to the Public
catch an STD and how they can protect
Prosecutor’s Office suggested that the drug
themselves. We show them a condom and
addiction of these boys and girls was rela-
explain to them how to use it,” she says.
ted to the fact that health facilities usually
“We do this carefully in order not to sho-
refused to take care of them. “Out of fear,
ck them. Actually, the children think this
inexperience or lack of technical condi-
will never happen to them. They always
tions, the professionals of these health
say that they don’t see this happening that
care services adopted defensive strategies
much, but we discuss the problem and
to reject them,” the psychiatrist observes.
show them that it can happen. Little by lit-
According to Zilda Miranda, a social
tle, we explain to them how it can happen,
worker who has been a member of the
but we don’t show them the album every
team from the outset, the Captains of the
time we see them, only when we think it’s
Sands group was set up to act as the link
appropriate.” Nurse Edinalva Maia, ano-
between these boys and girls, health fa-
ther member of the Captains of the Sands
cilities, and the intersectoral network. In
team, adds: “They usually don’t talk that
addition to providing health care on the
much about sexuality. When we broach
streets, the technical experts of the team
the subject, we notice that they get a lit-
assist children and adolescents in the Pe-
tle embarrassed. So we don’t always have
lourinho Health Care Center and take
an opportunity to talk about this subject.
them to other public facilities and referral
We usually bring it up when they come to
centers as required.
us for help, to get condoms.” At the health
Social worker Sandra Mendonça, also a
member of the team, stresses the impor-
station, the team also distributes condoms
if they ask for them.
tance of the partnership between the WG
With the experience of the Captains of
and the Captains of the Sands team in the
the Sands team, the Salvador WG realized,
work on the streets through recreational
for example, that you cannot work with
activities and workshops.
this population without the help from
The need for STD/AIDS prevention
mental health professionals. “This part-
is usually discussed with the kids in the
nership is crucial because these children,
midst of other issues, social worker Mai-
who use psychoactive substances, have ex-
ra explains. “On certain occasions, we take
perienced great mental suffering and are
some materials with us to show them to
very vulnerable as a result of their life on
the children on the streets. For example,
the streets,” says Maria do Socorro Farias
we have an album with pictures of genitals
Chaves, municipal STD/AIDS coordinator.
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
Advances { 105 }
Playful activities,
such as games,
are part of the
preventive work of
the Captains of the
Sands team with boys
and girls living in
poor communities
in Salvador
Currently, the Captains of the San-
in an activity, we listen to them,” explains
ds team is also engaged in preventive
Maira Rios. She says the children men-
work with children and adolescents in
tion many different problems they face,
the Pilar community. These are boys and
ranging from domestic violence to lack
girls who live in a slum in Salvador and
of leisure to the need of assistance from
spend their days in nearby streets, often
appropriate projects. “They draw and we
begging for money at traffic light inter-
talk. In their drawings, we look for clues
sections. Every Tuesday afternoon, the
for dialogue”, says Maira.
team goes there to offer playful activi-
According to her, their drawings often
ties to these children or to take them to
portray situations of gun violence. “When
places like the beach to engage them in
we ask them to tell a story, they usually
activities there. “We bring games, sheets
tell stories involving violence. They always
of paper and colored pencils for them to
draw guns, robbery situations, blood,” says
make drawings. While they are engaged
the social worker.
{ 106 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Opportunities for learning among the organizations are available not only
within the Working Groups in each city. Throughout this process, several workshops were held with street children and adolescents, besides national and local
meetings and seminars that made it possible for the organizations and government
agencies to exchange views, information and experiences more intensely, improving the performance of the groups themselves. One of these events was called
Jornada Crianças, Jovens, Rua e Aids (Children, Youths, Streets and AIDS Journey),
which was held in Rio de Janeiro in August 2009. The meeting was funded by the
state STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis managing board and UNICEF, and it revealed
the richness and diversity of the methodologies developed by the Rio WG.
Another important event was the National Meeting of the Children, Youths,
Streets, and AIDS Working Groups, which was also held in Rio de Janeiro with the
technical support and funding from the state STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis managing board and non-governmental organizations. The event was attended by over
40 participants, including representatives from government programs, international
organizations, and civil society organizations from Salvador, Recife, São Paulo, Rio
de Janeiro and some South American countries (Bolivia, Colombia and Peru). On
that occasion, the members of the groups discussed their main challenges and
celebrated major victories along the way, and became more acquainted with the
methodologies developed by those institutions in different cities.
Claudio Barria, from the NGO If This Street Were Mine in Rio de Janeiro,
stressed the importance of these forums, where different actors have an opportunity to meet, develop more comprehensive responses, and consolidate spaces and
mechanisms for civil society’s participation. Aldir Rodrigues, one of the coordinators
of the NGO Pé no Chão in Recife, believes that the establishment of this discussion
forum to bring to light all the local and national difficulties and shortcomings of the
service network for children and adolescents was a major achievement of the WG.
The contact we had with other groups that were more experienced than ours in Recife motivated and helped us in building and developing our work,” he points out.
A network under construction
The strengthening of relations between civil society and government is yet another achievement made possible by the action of the Working Groups in the
four cities. According to social worker Carolina Cruz, from the Municipal Health
Care Secretariat of Rio de Janeiro, the improved relationship between the state
and NGOs resulting from their action was a significant success. “The STD/AIDS
program keeps relations with various organizations, but I had never seen a relationship as horizontal as this one. I see this as an advance – the state listening
Advances { 107 }
to civil society not to outsource the service, but to collect inputs from a reliable
source. Another advance was the incorporation of technologies developed by
NGOs into the actions of the state. It’s an innovative process,” Carolina assesses.
Elizabeth Oliveira, from the NGO Excola, has a similar opinion. She thinks the
WG fulfilled the role of bringing organizations together and consolidating relations between them. She believes, however, that it needs to take a bolder step
forward – strengthening these initiatives at a more managerial level, so that they
are less sporadic than now. That is: it needs to strengthen the networking process.
Despite all the difficulties involved in weaving a network to operate in this
area, members of the four Working Groups believe that one of their successes was
to begin to take firm steps to actually build a network. Kátia Cilene Barbosa, former
coordinator of the Joselito Lopes shelter in São Paulo, believes that a breakthrough
made possible by the WG was the establishment of a dialogue between different
secretariats. “Despite our differing views, we have the same goal. Working in a
network is something very theoretical. But this project went beyond the notion of
a service network. It considered the need for training and actions from a collective
perspective, rather than from the perspective of individual institutions, forums or
facilities. This work was a challenge we faced day by day,” she celebrates.
According to psychologist Lucília Nunes da Silva, from São Paulo, a major
victory was that, for the first time, the topic was discussed by technical departments in charge of ensuring health care to children and adolescents. “They
didn’t address this issue in the past. For this reason, a manual on care for
adolescents was prepared and I managed to include a chapter about those on
the streets in it. It’s the last chapter, but it was actually included in the manual
The establishment
of this discussion
forum to bring
to light all the
local and national
difficulties and
shortcomings of
the service network
for children and
adolescents was a
major achievement
of the WG
and proposes ideas for assisting and approaching them,” celebrates Lucília.
In the opinion of educator Marcos Veltri, in São Paulo, the WG made significant
strides in developing the network. “The meetings of the WG were not always pleasant.
Sometimes they were tense, because they exposed differences. But having a forum to
bring up and discuss weaknesses is important. The big leap was the common goal.
Despite all the differences, the project managed to be consistent,” he observes. The
members of the São Paulo WG say that its main achievements include the definition
of an integrated action plan with the participation of governmental and non-governmental organizations; a transparent dialogue between civil society and government;
the strengthening of the joint work; the establishment of guidelines for a public policy
designed to ensure the rights of this audience; the continued, quality training provided
to health care and social assistance professionals and social educators; the strengthening of discussions on sexuality and STD/AIDS and the facilitated access to prevention
inputs, both for children and youths and for professionals working on the streets.
Aldir Rodrigues,
from the NGO
Pé no Chão in Recife
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
Children
engaged in an
activity of the
Captains of the
Sand team in
Salvador
{ 110 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Less red tape
All the working groups are unanimous in the view that access to prevention inputs has improved 2. As a result of the work carried out through playful activities for boys and girls and through training workshops for professionals of public services, progress was undoubtedly made in this regard.
In Rio de Janeiro, for example, the WG facilitated the access of street
children and adolescents to condoms in various public health facilities.
Elizabeth Oliveira, from the NGO Excola, describes how this process took
place. “Some of the hurdles that we had identified in the early stages of
our work are no longer a problem. Access to prevention inputs used to be
very difficult in the past, but not anymore,” she stresses. “In all our activities, the children have access to condoms. This was a problem that the WG
addressed and solved by linking up the work of different organizations
and developing partnerships with government agencies,” she concludes.
In the health facilities with which the Rio WG discussed this matter, there
are no more obstacles or red tape for giving out condoms - a key achieve-
All the Working
Groups are
unanimous in the
view that access
to prevention
inputs has
improved
ment of the group, even though, it should be stressed, prevention goes well
beyond that (read more about this subject in the chapter Challenges).
In São Paulo, condoms are now available for free in stands set up right
next to the entrance to health facilities. In the opinion of journalist Márcia
Gatto, from the Rio Criança Network, there is no doubt that street boys and
girls learned many things along this process. “They might face situations such
as ‘I don’t have a condom with me’ or lose their condoms, or they might not
have a place to keep them. Sometimes, they might run into situations where
no condoms are available, but they know where to get them. They know
they can always get a condom at referral institutions,” she says.
Advances in public policies
The Working Groups also made remarkable progress in the public policy
arena. In Salvador, the joint work of NGOs and government agencies led to a
major achievement in the assistance provided to street boys and girls in significant ways: the establishment of the Captains of the Sands team after the Axé
Project made a formal representation before the Public Prosecutor’s Office in
the state of Bahia reporting the situation of children and adolescents addicted
to crack cocaine (read more about the Captains of the Sands team in the box
contained in this chapter). In São Paulo, the Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Pre2 This
is one of the guidelines and priorities of the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department
of the Ministry of Health and of the state-level coordinating boards.
Advances { 111 }
venção was created as a result of a project supported by the state government
of São Paulo through the state STD/AIDS coordinating board, which became
operational in the wake of the activities of the WG, in July 2009, in a rented
house in downtown São Paulo and began to offer cultural, sporting, and educational activities to street children and adolescents. According to Renee Amorim,
a musician and coordinator of the Taiguara, the project managed to reduce the
dropout rate of children and adolescents from the institution to zero in just one
year. “When the project was launched, four of each ten children admitted to the
Taiguara left. We managed to bring this figure down to zero in one year. We
saw that the children really enjoyed the activities that we developed based on
the new approaches,” Amorim reports.
In addition, the involvement of a
Testing and Counseling Center in São
Paulo, the Henfil CTA3, in the Tangram
Project improved the access of children
and adolescents to the health system,
particularly to health facilities linked
to the center, and made it possible for
them to be tested for STD/AIDS.
In Rio de Janeiro, in turn, apart
Copy/Quixote Project
from sensitizing health facilities to
better serve this audience, the project secured two major advances: a
municipal policy was drawn up for
protecting the rights of children and
adolescents and changes were made
Drawing made by an
to the profile of the Family Health Program, which began to assist the street
adolescent assisted by
population through integrated teams involving primary, mental and dental
the Quixote Project in
health care professionals (read more about this subject in the chapter Chal-
São Paulo, portraying
lenges). “Securing the approval of a municipal policy for street children and
the fear of death
adolescents was a major achievement. It was, without any doubt, a milestone. The WG also played a very important role in defining these health
care guidelines, as both municipal officials and NGOs took part in drafting
the policy,” recalls Elizabeth Oliveira, from the NGO Excola. “For the first
time ever, a municipal action focused on prevention was implemented. Child
and adolescent sexuality has always been a taboo,” Elizabeth observes.
3 T
he Henfil CTA Center is the oldest municipal health facility specializing in STD/AIDS.
Its 22nd anniversary will be in December 2011.
{ 112 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
A creative and playful activity
Workshop paves the way for a dialogue on sexuality and STD/AIDS
with adolescents at the Casa Taiguara in São Paulo
The success of
the strategy lies
basically in the
fact that the
children can
talk in their
own language
One of the most successful strategies in the
to get closer to each other. “We would show
STD/AIDS prevention work with children
them a doll and ask them to kiss it on any
and adolescents on the streets in São Paulo
part of its body. This was done in turns.
is the Pega-Não Pega (what seems to be the
That’s when things began to get compli-
problem or not) workshop, created by psy-
cated. (...) They would kiss it here and there
chologist Solange Maria Santos Oliveira, co-
and when they were asked to kiss another
ordinator of the Henfil CTA Center. The idea
participant, one of them would say ‘I will not
of the workshop was born from an activity
kiss his foot, his arm.’ (...) The topic of sexu-
she developed with a colleague in a pediat-
ality would come up and we would start a
ric outpatient clinic of the Syrian-Lebanese
discussion: why is it easy to kiss the doll and
Hospital, when an adolescent was about to
difficult to kiss people? We could always see
be discharged from the facility. “We didn’t
in some of the answers that the reason was
know what to do at first. We had just one
prejudice. We would then take advantage of
day to engage the boy in the activity and we
these answers to discuss whatever prejudice
wanted it to leave an impression somehow.
they showed, as that was the idea. We didn’t
We were aware that talking about STD/
have a predefined technique to apply to the
AIDS in depth with the adolescent was not
group, we just wanted to hear what they had
a good idea. We thought about using a ‘what
to say,” Solange recalls.
seems to be the problem’ technique to find
When she began to hold the “What
out what his immediate interests were. After
seems to be the matter or not” work-
that, we would show him some prevention
shop at the Casa Taiguara, Solange ap-
materials,” she reports.
plied this technique. “I tried to gather a
According to her, he mentioned rela-
small group. And I was always left with
tionship issues like dating and “hooking
the impression that they lacked focus,
up.” Solange explains that she always used a
that they talked about a lot of things
mobilization technique: participants intro-
and about nothing. But they usually got
duced themselves, told the others why they
very involved in the activities. I try to
were there, what was their understanding of
use their own language in the workshop,
the term prevention, and what they wanted
talk to them,” Solange stresses. During
to know. We also used a technique for them
the workshops, the coordinator must at
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Advances { 113 }
In the background,
times resume the role of the health care
the participants themselves. “It’s no use lec-
Solange Oliveira and
professional or adult and tell the partici-
turing them,” Solange ponders.
educators of the Casa
pants that they have issues to reflect on.
On January 21, 2011, we watched one of
However, the success of the strategy ba-
these workshops. Solange Oliveira, from
to participants
sically lies in allowing the kids to express
the Henfil CTA Center, introduced herself,
in a Pega-Não Pega
themselves in their own language.
spoke about the pilot project, and asked ev-
(What seems to be
“I take as much advantage of what they say
eryone to say th eir names and tell the rest of
the problem or not)
as possible. (...) I never try to impose a more
the participants what they were doing there.
workshop
formal language. On some occasions, I have
Matias* said he wanted to talk about sex and
to introduce concepts and when I see that
that his greatest dream was to have a home.
one of them is more comfortable I ask him
Renan* wants to be a capoeira practitioner,
or her: ‘What do you think about this?’ That’s
Eder* has plans to become a soccer player
the cue for them to say what they think,” says
and decided to attend the workshop to talk
the psychologist of the Henfil CTA Center.
about sexuality, and Kevin* said he was there
The key element of this approach is to dis-
just to talk. Lucas* doesn’t want to say any-
cuss STD/AIDS prevention concepts built by
thing. He says he doesn’t feel like talking.
Taiguara talk
p
{ 114 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
The activity begins
with a doll that every
participant is asked
to kiss. One of the
boys attending the
workshop takes the
doll in his arms
p
The workshop participants are aged be-
you kiss a man on the ear?” Solange asks.
tween 12 and 15 years old. Solange asks each
“Kissing a woman is one thing, but kissing
one of them to speak about a doubt that
a man is quite another,” one of the partici-
they have for her to hang it on an imaginary
pants says. Another one says he is allergic
clothesline. They then begin to express
to men. “If I kiss him on the ear they’ll
their doubts little by little. “What are con-
think I’m gay,” Matias* adds. “Man with
doms made of? What is AIDS? Where did it
man gives you AIDS,” says Éder*.
come from?” the kids ask.
Solange takes advantage of these preju-
The activity begins with a doll every
dicial remarks to bring up the sexuality is-
participant is asked to kiss. Participants
sue. She asks the boys if they think the dis-
kiss it on the face, on the elbow, on the ear
cussion is about sexuality. Some of them say
(...). When they are asked to kiss another
no. Others say yes. Some of the participants
participant, confusion breaks out. “I’m not
associate sexuality with violence. One of the
kissing a man on the ear,” Matias* says.
boys, Luke*, beats the doll instead of kissing it.
And the discussion begins: “Why won’t
Solange talks to them about the difference be-
Advances { 115 }
tween sexuality and gender. “Sexuality is more
The kids want to know where AIDS
than sex,” she explains. “It’s the possibility of
came from and she explains to them. They
connecting to things and people.” Some of the
want to know what the acronym AIDS
older participants, aged from 14 to 15, say they
stands for and she tells them. At the end
had girlfriends to do “those things.”
of the workshop, she shows them how to
“How do you catch AIDS?” Solange
put a condom on a rubber penis and asks if
asks. One of the boys says that if you have
anyone wants to try. The boys are a bit shy
a wounded finger and you touch an open
initially, but not for long. And they learn
wound you can get AIDS. Solange uses his
that they should not open the wrapping of a
answer to talk about the several ways one can
condom with their teeth, so as not to break
get infected with AIDS. She also uses this cue
it, that they should blow into the condom
to talk about different ways to have sex and
to unroll it appropriately, and that they
about contraceptive methods.
should not let air into it.
Finally, she explains what the Henfil
Solange then gives out condoms to them.
CTA Center is all about and the impor-
One of the boys complains that another one
tance of testing for HIV. She tells them
put his hands on his “ass.” The controversy
that they don’t need to be accompanied
around homosexuality is back. Solange
by an adult or to show any ID to be tested.
Oliveira stresses the importance of consent
She reminds them of the importance of re-
and respect in relationships, and the work-
specting everybody.
shop closes with a big hug.
During the activity,
condoms are given
out to the adolescents
and they are taught
how to use them
Photographs: Nair Benedicto
appropriately
{ 116 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
June 22, 2009 was a truly important date in the struggle for promoting, defending and ensuring the rights of children and adolescents in Rio de Janeiro,
particularly of street children and adolescents. The Municipal Council for the
Rights of Children and Adolescents of Rio de Janeiro was the first one in Brazil
to draw up and pass a public policy for boys and girls on the streets. This municipal policy was the result of a long collective work carried out before the WG
was set up, involving civil society and government agencies from the very initial
discussions, in 2008 (read more about this action in the chapter Challenges). In
Rio de Janeiro, another action led by the WG resulted in the establishment of a
committee in charge of discussing a policy for the street population within the
Municipal Council on Children and Adolescents. This committee meets fortnightly
and includes actors from different secretariats, such as from the Health Care and
Social Assistance Secretariat, as well as representatives of the Working Group.
New approaches
The development of new methodologies for working with street children and
adolescents also played a key role in promoting major advances. One of the
central philosophies of the Working Groups was using art education tools. In this
process, many advances could be made. The organizations working with these
boys and girls developed highly creative strategies to address a complex and
delicate topic with an extremely vulnerable audience. Their mission was often
difficult, but rewarding. By engaging street boys and girls in playful activities,
their educators managed to reverse the logic of violence, replacing it with magic.
In São Paulo, these organizations created different games and held many
workshops to address prevention-related issues (read more about this in the
chapter Concept and Methodology). “For these boys and girls, the good thing
about attending a dance, hip-hop, percussion, IT workshop is the pleasure
of being in a group, of socializing, of producing beautiful things, of being
active players. This process touches me a lot. You remove these children
from an environment deeply marked by violence or, sometimes, invisibility,
and offer them a place where they can have hopes and be seen in a different way, simply as the children that they are,” says educator Marcos Veltri.
One of the most successful strategies was using a board game called the Trail
of Urban Refugees. Created by the Quixote Project in São Paulo, its formatting and
technical finishing process was supported by the WG and it was distributed to
various NGOs. According to Otávio Fabro Boemer, an educator with the Quixote
Project, the game was born from a concern with addressing the issue of prevention with children and adolescents on the streets. “Our biggest concern was: how
Advances { 117 }
are we going to approach these kids? We then considered that we should not
approach them talking about sex and prevention right away. It was essential to
create something to mediate this conversation: a game, something they could
play with,” he says. “We knew that it would have to be something very playful
and fun. It could not be any other way. We then came up with the idea of the
board game. The kids and even a police officer in the game are actual characters
they see on the streets. It is set in places they hang around,” explains the educator
(read more about the game in the chapter Concept and Methodology).
Good fruits
Boemer believes that the game paved the way for the kids to begin to address
more sensitive, deeper issues related to their daily lives. “If they pick up a card
that reads ‘You had sex without a condom, go back three spaces,’ it’s much
easier for them to talk about something similar that happened to a friend who
didn’t use a condom the night before. The game makes it possible for you to
ask: why didn’t he use a condom? What happened?” he says. The Sexuality
Dominoes is another game developed by the Quixote Project. “Dominoes was
the first game we used. I painted the prototype that we used on the streets with
graffiti. Using it, we turn situations that they have a hard time understanding
into questions: ‘What’s this, two girls together, two boys together?’ ‘What’s this,
feeling pain when you urinate? Why?’ But if nobody mediates the conversation,
Accident! The condom
broke. Stay where you are
and take a pregnancy
and STD test.
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
The Trail of Urban
Refugees board
game, from Quixote
Project, in São Paulo
Copy/Quixote Project
it will be just another game or drawing,” the educator ponders.
Photographs: Sérgio Moraes
{ 118 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
The workshop
is focused on
listening to what
the girls have to say,
Condom in My Head
A project developed by the NGO Excola reminds, with art,
the importance of not forgetting to use a condom
mobilizing them to
come up with their
own alternatives
Among the many creative strategies ad-
just like they carry a lipstick in their purse,”
opted by NGOs in Rio de Janeiro to ad-
explains pedagogue Elizabeth Oliveira, co-
dress STD/AIDS prevention, one deserves
ordinator of the NGO Excola. “It’s always
special mention: the Condom in My Head
the same old story: ‘I forgot the condom’.”
project, developed by the NGO Excola.
Realizing that people tend to forget to carry
This idea emerged from the observation
a condom with them, we created a contest
that female adolescents very often end up
called Condom in My Head, so that they
not using a condom when they have sex.
wouldn’t forget,” reports Elizabeth.
“Girls shouldn’t expect their male partners
The idea of creating the Condom in
to use a condom. They can carry a condom
My Head contest was born from the de-
Advances { 119 }
sire to take advantage of another project
29 years old. “We assist 13-year-old girls
developed by the NGO: the Afro beauty
and sometimes, unfortunately, girls aged
salon. “The girls already make Afro hair-
12. When we receive these girls, they are
styles for a living. The idea of the contest
in their adolescence, a phase of discoveries
is for them to adorn Afro hairstyles with
during which sexuality is at its peak and
condoms as a reminder that they should
their bodies are undergoing changes. And
never forget to carry and use them. We
these changes come abruptly for them,”
want them to remember to carry a con-
stresses psychologist Rívia Cunha. “It
dom always,” the pedagogue says. Ac-
seems that, for them, the phases of flirting,
cording to Elizabeth, the workshop is fo-
dating, are sped up, suppressed. And how
cused on listening to what the girls have
are we going to address the issue of sexu-
to say, mobilizing them to come up with
ality with them? Talking to them. Talking
their own alternatives. “And we do this in
to them and listening to what they have to
a way that they participate from the out-
say as well,” Rívia explains. “We make an
set. How are we going to do this, what are
effort to promote their autonomy, to make
we going to do?” she says.
them take a conscious look at the life they
Glauce Cristina da Costa, 26 years old
are living. They often want to use a con-
today and mother of three children, joined
dom, but their male partners don’t. You
the project ten years ago and learned great
have to deal with the ‘macho’ thing and try
lessons from the experience. “Learning to
and prevent various infections. We talk a
braid was very good because sometimes
lot about feminine issues, about women’s
I don’t have any money, not even to eat.
empowerment. The salon is a psychology
When people call me to have their hair
office for everybody,” she concludes.
dressed, it’s a good thing to know how to
braid,” says Glauce, who feels more empowered today. “I changed,” she says. “I learned
that if I don’t protect myself I can catch a
sexually transmitted disease. The project
is important because it helps us a lot. It
taught me how to take care of myself.”
The challenge of changing one’s sexual behavior involves emotional and selfesteem issues. For this reason, information alone is not sufficient.
The Condom in My Head project was
designed for adolescents and youths up to
I learned that if
I don’t protect
myself I can
catch a sexually
transmitted
disease
Glauce da Costa,
26, has taken part in
the project for the
last ten years
{ 120 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
In Rio de Janeiro, other recreational initiatives bore good fruit in the STD/AIDS
prevention work with street boys and girls. The NGO If This Street Were Mine
builds dialogue with children and adolescents using Brazilian folk tales and
puppets - locally referred to as mamulengo. The educators read Brazilian folk
tales to them and the kids create stories based on elements of their everyday
lives (read more about this workshop in the chapter Concept and Methodology).
The puppets are in turn used as a tool for discussing issues related to sexuality
and prevention. “When we take the puppets to the streets, we don’t use a ready
script. They have so many other things to say when we get there... The situation lends itself to improvisation. The lines and statements start flowing naturally,” says educator Jô Ventura. “It’s as if we were not there. The boys and girls
talk with the puppets, not with us” says Fábio Moraes. Some
workshops held by the organizations have also yielded positive
results in the lives of these children and adolescents. These include the “What seems to be the matter or not” workshop in São
Paulo, the Condom in My Head workshop in Rio de Janeiro, and
the Conversation Circle workshop in Recife (read more about
these initiatives in this chapter).
Although it is difficult to measure the results of this work,
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
members of the groups in the four cities believe it brought
many benefits to street boys and girls. Andrielle*, 14, a girl
from Pernambuco state, feels the changes that art education
brought to her daily life. “What I like most is that I learn many
things here. I come to the square and I learn how to dance.
Sometimes I take percussion or breakdance classes. It’s very
good. I also learned to respect the places I’m in. I learned how
to arrive at and leave places with respect. For example, I now
Adolescents assisted
know how go places to dance without messing around and re-
by the Pé no Chão
specting others,” says Andrielle*, who participates in the activities of the NGO
group in Recife
Pé no Chão in Recife. “I didn’t care about these things before, I didn’t want to
perform in
go to school. [The NGO] Pé no Chão encouraged me to go back to school. I’m
a public square
doing well in school now,” says the girl, who learned a lot about protecting
herself from STD/AIDS. “I didn’t know that you can only catch AIDS by having sex. I learned that I can kiss, hug, eat from the same spoon, without catching it. I can only catch it if I have sex without a condom,” Andrielle* explains.
“It was important to know this because at my age I don’t know on what day
and time I will have sex for the first time. I am more prepared for that day
now, as I learned how to protect myself and not to fall for the wrong guy. If
Advances { 121 }
he says he doesn’t have a condom, I can say: ‘No condom, no sex.’ You cannot tell if a person has AIDS or not by looking. Some people will not tell you
that they have it. Others might even infect you on purpose,” she concludes.
Changes in day-to-day life
In the opinion of educator Marcos Veltri, from São Paulo, although it is not possible
to know whether the incidence of STD/AIDS among these children and adolescents
has actually decreased, progress has been clearly made in many ways. “If you ask
me if we managed to reduce the incidence of STD/AIDS in this population, the
answer could be ‘I’m not sure.’ But I do know that the project had positive effects
on the lives of these boys and girls, which was worthwhile in itself, apart from
showing that this is a possible path to follow,” he assesses. The coordinator of the
Casa Taiguara in São Paulo, Renee Amorim, shares the same impressions. In her
opinion, changes in terms of prevention are very subtle and difficult to measure.
However, Amorim highlights an important point. “When you see these kids starting
and finishing things (courses) you realize that they underwent major changes,” she
observes. “These are things they have now that they didn’t have before: continuity,
commitment, perseverance, working with others, respect. Children on the streets,
without a home, at social risk, exposed to violence, usually express their feelings through violence. When we offer them an alternative, they begin to express
themselves in other ways,” Renee Amorim believes. Psychologist Teo Araujo, who
participated in the WG as representative of the state STD/AIDS coordinating board,
sees the fact that the workshops on body language and rhythm included discussions on issues related to body and sexuality as a success. “This approach emerged
from the project and was a very interesting strategy,” Araujo says.
The story of Jonathan*, from Rio de Janeiro, a boy that attends activities offered by
the NGO Childhope, provides a powerful example of the successes achieved in this
field. A drug user, Jonathan* used to be assisted by the São Martinho Foundation, but
its educators and technical staff could not make him open up to them. “He was very
reserved. When we invited some kids from the São Martinho Foundation to join the
program, Jonathan* was one of those who came. He began to talk, to express himself,
to defend himself from others, to assert himself. And when we heard him singing for
the first time, we were like ‘wow’! We were moved to tears,” says an excited Janaína
Ricardo dos Santos, an educator with Childhope. Huge challenges still lie ahead in
fighting for the rights of children and adolescents on the streets, but the positive results
that the pilot project achieved so far in the daily life of this population are undeniable.
* The names were changed to protect the identity of the adolescents.
{ 122 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Conversation Circle
In Recife, an activity with drawings and lots of conversations
was a hit among street children and adolescents
In Recife, the so-called Conversation
a man with AIDS who asked for directions
Circle is one of the most successful activ-
on the street and then shook hands with
ities. Conducted by psychologist Bethâ-
the man who gave these directions, who
nia Cunha, member of the technical staff
quickly washed his hands for fear of catch-
of the STD/AIDS program of Pernambu-
ing the disease,” says Lucas*. Bethânia uses
co state, the activity begins with all the
the cue to talk about ways to prevent the
participants making a drawing based on
disease. “The virus cannot enter the body
what they heard about HIV/AIDS.
through the skin,” she explains. “How does
Bethânia then arranges all the drawings in a circle for all the participants to
One of the boys answers: “Through cuts
Children and
see what each of them drew. “What can
on your skin.” Another boy wants to know if
adolescents
we see in all almost these drawings?”
AIDS can be contracted through sex. “How
assisted by the
she asks. “A condom,” they answer.
can we tell that someone has AIDS?” Lucas*
NGO Pé no Chão
in Recife
Photographs: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
the virus enter your body?” she asks.
That’s when the discussion begins. Each
asks. Bethânia explains that the virus can-
adolescent describes their drawing. “I drew
not enter the body through the tissue we
Advances { 123 }
call skin, but rather through another set of
cells called mucosa, which can be found on
the head of the penis, in the vagina, and in
the mouth. “Because you can’t tell who has
the virus by looking, you must always use a
condom,” she says, taking advantage of the
conversation to talk about HIV testing, its
availability at public health facilities, and
the need to be tested for the virus.
Valter* shows his drawing and explains
what he tried to portray in it: “A man was
walking down the street and a woman invited
him to have sex. He had sex with her without a
condom and caught the disease,” he said.
Bethânia says that this is a very com-
The Conversation
rica believe in this myth and, as a result, are
Circle begins with
spreading the virus more and more.
all the participants
mon situation and asks the boys to give
Fernando* wants to know if people
suggestions as to what to do in such a case.
with AIDS can have kids. “There are treat-
based on what
Valter* mentions masturbation and Bethâ-
ments today that allow mothers to have
they heard about
nia says it is an alternative and uses the cue
children without transmitting the virus to
HIV/AIDS
to stress the need to think about alterna-
them,” explains Bethânia.
tives such as this one.
“If a woman invites me to have sex and I
Emerson* explains his drawing: it shows
refuse, she will say I can’t get it up,” Fernan-
a broken condom and two couples that had
do* says. Another boy adds: “She might also
unprotected sex. Bethânia explains that con-
think you are gay.” “Among you, in your daily
doms don’t have holes in them and don’t
lives, you can agree not to have sex without
break easily. And, in addition to HIV, they
a condom, which doesn’t mean you can’t get
prevent hepatitis B and C, herpes, syphilis,
it up or that you are gay. You have the right
and other sexually transmitted diseases.
to refuse to have sex without a condom. And
Adriano* explains what he tried to por-
you can tell the other person: ‘Look, I’m try-
tray in his drawing: a girl with HIV thinks
ing to protect both of us. The new trend is
that by having sex she can get rid of the virus
to always use a condom when having sex.’
and pass it to the person she makes sex with.
It’s wise to only have sex with a condom. All
The psychologist explains that this is impos-
we have to do is change our discourse, our
sible and tells them that some people in Af-
mindframe,” concludes Bethânia.
*The names were changed to protect the identity of the adolescents.
making a drawing
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Human Images
Street boy in
the Arruda
community
in Recife
ANNEXES
Useful tools
Photograph: Sérgio Moraes
On the next pages, readers will find
recommended readings, website and videos,
besides a summary of recommendations
and reflections that can be helpful in
working with STD/AIDS prevention with
street boys and girls
Street boy assisted by the NGO If This Street Were Mine in Rio de Janeiro
{ 126 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Between October 2010 and January 2011, over 120 experts and dozens of
children and adolescents were interviewed for this publication. Relying on
the collaboration and partnership of many educators, the most successful
workshops held by the project in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, and
Recife were recreated. The project’s achievements, challenges, and lessons
learned are documented in this book. Some of the main reflections and
recommendations arising from these experiences, which can be useful to
other cities, states, or countries in their efforts to prevent STD/AIDS among
children and adolescents on the streets, will be provided below.
Approach: “There’s no ready-made
formula. Each educator builds his or
her own approach using dialogue,
questions,
or
unique
strategies.
When I worked as a street educator, the first thing I did was ask them
questions like ‘do you know where
this street is?’ After this initial approach, I would get closer to them
little by little.”
(Source: Verônica Rosário Maga
lhães de Santana, one of the founding educators of the Axé Project
in Salvador and supervisor of its
street educators)
“We use different elements to reach
the children: we exchange glances,
show them games (dominoes, checkers, balloons, soap bubble blowers,
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
etc.) and also specific materials (Sexuality Dominoes and a board game).
The most important thing is that we
incorporated STD/AIDS prevention
actions into all our activities.”
(Source: Artur Lauande Mucci,
Games and play are some of the elements used by the educators of the
educator of the Quixote Project,
Quixote Project to reach children and adolescents
in São Paulo)
A nnexes { 127 }
It’s very important
to adopt a cultural
approach using
means of expression
that make sense to
them. It is essential
not to use the
discourse of adults
The NGO Pé no Chão
brings children
together in a public
square for a
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
cultural activity
Report Respondendo às
Vulnerabilidades de Jovens
em Situação de Rua ao HIV/
aids (Responding to the
vulnerabilities of streetdwelling youth to HIV/AIDS),
which was prepared based on
the recommendations from
a workshop that brought
together representatives
of the STD, AIDS and Viral
Hepatitis Department,
UNICEF, and the International
Center for Technical
Cooperation on HIV/AIDS
{ 128 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Links: “To start a project like the Working Group, you must ensure appropriate
links between civil society, government agencies, and the network of services
for children and adolescents. Another key requirement is to sensitize health
professionals to make sure they understand its approach.”
(Source: Sandra Santos, psychologist, consultant for the human rights of children
and adolescents, Salvador)
“There’s a lot of talk nowadays about institutional incompleteness in the social
area. As pedagogue Antonio Carlos Gomes da Costa once said, it’s by bringing
together those who are different, valuing diversity, that we complement each
other to provide integral care to these children and adolescents. Whether in
It’s by bringing
together those who
are different, valuing
diversity, that we
complement each
other to provide
integral care to
these children and
adolescents
the field of health care or social assistance, we know that we need to move
forward in fostering links, networking.”
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Evaluation: “Periodic evaluation workshops, held in the style of conversation
circles, played a key role in the early stages of implementing the Salvador WG. In
them, we assessed our actions and difficulties, such as the reluctance of some street
dwellers to engage in dialogue with us or the low frequency of the educational activities we were offering, and we presented the work we had done. These evaluation
workshops were important for, among other things, updating epidemiological data”.
(Source: Tânia Duplatt, from Cradis, Salvador)
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
Marcos Veltri,
pedagogue, São Paulo’s
public health educator,
quoting the educator
Antônio Carlos
Gomes da Costa
Children assisted by the Conceição Macedo Charity Institution in Salvador
A nnexes { 129 }
Street girl assisted
Copy/Quixote Project
by the Quixote
Project in São Paulo
portrays women
with a drawing of the
female sexual organs
Playing: “Playing is of primary importance. It makes children reflect on things.
It’s a fertile field for dialogue. Playing for the sake of playing is also extremely
valuable and precious.”
(Source: Lucas Souza de Carvalho, psychologist with the Quixote Project, São Paulo)
Training and capacity-building: “Training events must always address the
need for strengthening links within the network and for integrating public policies. Social and health care agents work with the same population and usually
don’t talk to each other. Moments for integrating their knowledge and experiences foster their growth as professionals.”
(Source: Kátia Cilene Barbosa, social worker, former coordinator of the Joselito Lopes shelter in São Paulo)
{ 130 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
“Training professionals is fundamental. We must provide appropriate training to the
health care professionals and social workers who keep in touch with these children
and adolescents on a daily basis and try and break away from the moralistic culture
that still prevails in relation to them. Health care services must rely on professionals sensitized to understand that their work involves much more than just treating
seizures and other effects of crack cocaine use. We need to establish a safety net for
children and adolescents to which policies in all the other areas apply.”
(Source: Ana Lívia Adriano, former coordinator of the Joselito Lopes shelter in São Paulo)
“Training and capacity-building should include the objective of integrating the
work that health care professionals carry out regularly into the STD/AIDS prevention agenda. The question is how to design and introduce an element in my
actions from a prevention perspective. It’s not just one additional item. It’s a
new “dance” in our daily “dancing.” This perception makes all the difference.”
(Source: Solange Maria Santos Oliveira, psychologist and coordinator of the
Henfil CTA Center in São Paulo)
Dialogue: “The methodology is essentially based on dialogue. As Paulo Freire once
said, dialogue is the basis of any participatory methodology. It ensures that one will
speak and the other will listen. Respecting people and dialoguing with them is key.”
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Posters and flyers
of the Ministry of
entrance to the Casa
Taiguara in São Paulo
help to foster dialogue
on STD/AIDS with the
adolescents
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Health available at the
A nnexes { 131 }
Documents: “The law ensures full care to undocumented children or adolescents. What we see in practice, however, is that some health facilities
make it difficult for street children and adolescent to access their services
and to get inputs (condoms) in them. Asking them the number of their ID
or SUS card for them to be assisted doesn’t make any sense.”
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Involvement: “Without the involvement of the street boys and girls themselves, prevention efforts have a limited scope. However, it’s extremely difficult to secure their involvement in prevention efforts. Their personal conditions and, in some cases, drug use make the barriers even higher.”
(Source: Manuel Manrique, technical consultant to the project Responding to
the Vulnerabilities of Street-Dwelling Youth to HIV/AIDS)
Collective spaces: “A key point is ensuring the availability of collective spaces,
such as forums for defending children and adolescents, local forums, social forums, etc. There must be spaces to bring together actors working in different
areas (health care, education, social assistance, sports, culture, housing, in the
Without the
involvement of the
street boys and
girls themselves,
prevention efforts
have a limited scope
Social Assistance and Development Secretariat, in the S System, etc.).”
Copy/Quixote Project
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Self-adhesive labels: “We stick self-adhesive labels (image above) on kids
lying on the streets sleeping or half unconscious with messages such as ‘We
miss you’... The idea is to let them know that the educators are around and
that they can be relied upon whenever they need.”
(Source: Rodrigo Rodrigues Ferré, educator with the Quixote Project, São Paulo)
Inputs: “We must facilitate access to inputs. In São Paulo, we set up stands next to
the entrance to health facilities where people can get condoms for free. But if you
can’t have a stand like this, you can use a basket or a box, for example.”
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Manuel Manrique,
technical consultant
to the project Responding
to the Vulnerabilities
of Street-Dwelling
Youth to HIV/AIDS
Children assisted
by the Conceição
Macedo Charity
Institution in
Salvador express
their desires
through art
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
{ 134 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Sexuality Dominoes: recreation is the
gateway to the project’s work
Integration: “Integrating policies is fundamental for working with children
and adolescents. Since out institution was established, we have learned by
practice that this is a fact, and not only for STD/AIDS prevention actions.”
(Source: Jocimar Alves Borges, executive coordinator of the non-governmental organization Pé no Chão in Recife)
Recreation: “Recreation is usually the gateway to the project’s work. Using games, we were able to address more sensitive, deeper issues that they
Copy/Quixote Project
face in their daily lives. Street children have a hard time accepting they are
vulnerable. They are ashamed to talk about their situation, but they end up
revealing things about their lives unintentionally as they play.”
(Source: Raphael Fabro Boemer, educator of the Quixote Project in São Paulo)
Workshop: “In the workshops, I stress the commitment that all of them
should take to disseminate information about preventative measures and care
to at least one person. I emphasize the need for them to be on the alert to
symptoms, risk behaviors, and the vulnerabilities that lead to these behaviors, and try and agree on very simple things with them. For example: if it’s
itching, burning, red, get to the hospital right away.”
(Source: Tânia Costa Duplatt, psychologist with Cradis in Salvador)
Opportunity: “What really works in preventing STD/AIDS among street
boys and girls is enjoying the moment and using things they say as cues to
address issues. It’s important not to miss opportunities and also to create
opportunities by, for example, spreading posters and flyers on the subject
throughout the premises of your institution.”
(Source: Francisco César Xavier Oliveira, pedagogue, musician and coordination
assistant at the Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Prevenção in São Paulo)
A nnexes { 135 }
What really works
in preventing
STD/AIDS among
street boys and
girls is enjoying
the moment and
using things they
say as cues to
address issues
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Francisco César
Xavier Oliveira,
pedagogue, musician
and coordination
assistant at the Casa
Taiguara de Cultura e
Prevenção in São Paulo
Ballet class at the Casa Taiguara in São Paulo
Partnerships: “To deal with STD/AIDS prevention, we need to expand the
logic of the service to provide full care to these children and adolescents. Some
partnerships are therefore indispensable, such as partnerships with mental health
programs, with the local program for children and adolescents, with the Municipal Secretariat for Social Action. It’s a complex issue. Regardless of the intensity of
your focus on preventing STD/AIDS or even on treating these diseases, children
have other needs that you’ll find out along the way.”
(Source: Maria do Socorro Farias Chaves, from the municipal STD/AIDS coordinating board in Salvador)
{ 136 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Public policy: “A responsible policy designed for these teenagers must
take into account the need to assist their families. It shouldn’t be focused
only on health care, education, or the labor market either. It must include
interventions in all public policy areas.”
(Source: Kátia Cilene Barbosa, social worker and former coordinator of the
Joselito Lopes shelter in São Paulo)
Prevention: “Prevention for the sake of prevention doesn’t work. We need
to create favorable conditions (in terms of self-esteem, quality of life, etc.) for
these boys or girls to realize the importance of protecting themselves, otherwise
they may not even see the importance of using a condom.”
(Source: Elizabeth Oliveira, pedagogue and coordinator of the NGO Excola in
Rio de Janeiro)
“Prevention should entail actions to promote the right to education, so that
these children and adolescents may have access to rights, campaigns, and playful, creative, fun and serious languages. Touching their hearts is important.”
(Source: Márcia Acioli, advisor for policies in defense of the rights of children
Photographs: Sérgio Moraes
and adolescents at the Institute for Socioeconomic Studies – Inesc)
Children in Rio de
Janeiro create a story
about two characters
and themselves
Capoeira classes offered by the
Casa Taiguara in São Paulo bring
together teens from shelters and
the community at large
“Prevention-related issues should be addressed in the simplest way possible.
When it comes to prevention, you must teach simple things to your audience
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
A nnexes { 137 }
Prevention for the
sake of prevention
doesn’t work. We
need to create
favorable conditions
for these boys or
girls to realize
the importance
of protecting
themselves
before you can address more elaborate and complex issues.”
(Source: Ana Paula Patrício, psychologist at the Casa Taiguara in São Paulo)
Questionnaire: “Do you know of any medicine that can prevent sexually transmitted diseases?” “Do you think that you can catch a sexually transmitted disease
even without coming?” “Can more than one contraceptive method be used at the
same time?” These are some of the questions included in a questionnaire applied
during the Papos Course delivered by the NGO Childhope Brasil. The courses are
based on this questionnaire, which is applied to adolescents and young people to
assess the extent of their knowledge of the topic before and after taking the course.
(Source: The full questionnaire is available in the publication Metodologia do
Programa de Prevenção à Aids, Promoção e Orientação em Saúde e Sexualidade, launched in 2010 by Childhope Brasil)
Area recognition: “Knowing the area in which street boys and girls hang
around is important in the process of approaching them. Check all the details: if
they go there every day, if they sleep there, if they return to their homes or not,
Elizabeth Oliveira,
pedagogue and coordinator
of the NGO Excola,
in Rio de Janeiro
{ 138 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
what they do there, at what times, if it’s more a tourist or commercial area, etc.
Educators must know how to make this diagnosis and be creative, using this basis
to develop their own repertoire of activities and actions.”
(Source: Verônica Rosário Magalhães de Santana, one of the founding educators of the Axé Project in Salvador and supervisor of its street educators)
Replicating: “As a first step to replicate the project, you must respect local actors. You need to identify the scenario and the actors working in it (government
agencies, NGOs, social movements, etc.), as well as other actors. In certain
regions, there is an interface between homelessness, violence, trafficking, and
sexual exploitation networks. You should not bring any proposal to these areas
without mapping out its territorial forces first. Who are the driving actors and
Knowing the area
in which street
boys and girls hang
around is important
in the process of
approaching them
those we cannot join forces with? The second point is respecting the specific
features of the area, its micro-territories.”
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Professional support: “Clarifying legal issues with health professionals is
fundamental. They have many doubts about the meaning of legal provisions.
They are always concerned about risks they might be exposed to. It’s important
to discuss these issues with them. We need to support these professionals. If
Verônica Rosário
Magalhães de Santana,
one of the founding
educators of the Axé
Project in Salvador
and supervisor
of its street educators
they feel insecure to see the children alone, we can recommend that they see
them in pairs, for example.”
(Source: Marcos Veltri, pedagogue, public health educator, São Paulo)
Sensitization: “We organized a workshop in Salvador for the participants to
become acquainted with what each of them was doing and see how they could
join efforts to promote this initiative. During the workshop, we sought to identify
who was working with this audience already. The big issue was discussing how
to reach these children and who could do this more easily as a starting point. The
organizations were already committed to the cause. Not much effort was necessary
to persuade them to work together. We just had to plant a little seed.”
(Source: Jean Marcelo Almeida Costa, Pathfinder project consultant, who was working as advisor to the State Health Care Secretariat of Bahia when the WG was set up)
Occupational Therapy: “Sees human activity as a creative, creating, playful, expressive, evolving, and productive process and as a self-maintenance
endeavor. It contributes to starting new life projects through art and/or cultural
workshops. For this reason, the work with extremely vulnerable populations
A nnexes { 139 }
Photograph: Nair Benedicto
Boy from a local
community
attending a DJing
class at the
Casa Taiguara
in São Paulo
seeks to provide opportunities to them through activities that facilitate their
emotional and psychomotor development.”
(Source: Carlos Lemos, occupational therapist, representative of the prevention unit
of the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis managing board of the Health Care Secretariat of the State of Rio de Janeiro in the Rio Working Group)
Bonds: “The main issue with street boys and girls is forming and keeping a bond with them. These children and adolescents need to see a
meaning in what is being proposed to them.”
(Source: Teo Weingrill Araújo, psychologist, former member of the technical
staff of the unit in charge of assisting more vulnerable populations of the
prevention department of the STD/AIDS coordinating board of São Paulo)
“Because our team works on the streets every week, a bond is formed between us and the children. The large majority of them knows the phone numbers of IBCM and our personal phone numbers by heart and feels comfortable to call us at any time. On our part, we urge them to visit a health facility
regularly and to take the medicines prescribed to them properly.”
(Source: Father Alfredo de Souza Dórea, one of the coordinators of the Conceição Macedo Charity Institution in Salvador)
{ 140 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
Exchanging experiences
In addition to strengthening national responses, South-South cooperation
(Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia and Peru) allows for the development of joint strategies
Some surveys suggest that the age of chil-
education, with a focus on sexual and re-
dren and adolescents on the streets in La-
productive rights. With regard to sexual
tin America ranges from 8 to 17 years old
orientation, the participants believe that
and that, in average, they begin to live on
addressing all diversity is important.
the streets when they are around 9. Girls
account for 10-15% of this population.
Sexuality was
highlighted by
all countries
as an area to
be addressed
through
education,
with a focus
on sexual and
reproductive
rights
According to the report, the lack of
a specific public budget to assist street
“Few records and little information
boys and girls; the lack of census data
on this population are available in Latin
on street-dwelling children, adolescents
American countries. Its vulnerability
and youth; weak, unrelated and frag-
to HIV and the need to develop specific
mented policies; ill-prepared profession-
prevention strategies for it are also top-
als; schools that expel boys and girls who
ics not yet included in the list of priori-
are seen as different; and non-universal
ties of national programs in the region,”
services are problems affecting the four
observes the report Responding to the
countries to different extents.
vulnerabilities of Street-Dwelling Youth:
Some of the recommendations aris-
South-South cooperation as an axis of in-
ing from the workshop, which brought
tegration (2008).
together representatives of the National
According to the document, South-
STD/AIDS Program of the Ministry of
South cooperation (Bolivia, Brazil, Co-
Health (today, the STD, AIDS and Viral
lombia and Peru) is a tool that can be
Hepatitis Department) and equivalent
used to foster an exchange of experiences
institutions of the three other countries,
and joint strategies, apart from strength-
UNICEF, and the International Center for
ening national responses.
Technical Cooperation on HIV/AIDS are
For this purpose, one of the first activi-
the following ones:
ties of the project was organizing the work-
– Actions to address the vulnerabilities
shop Responding to the Vulnerabilities of
of street-dwelling youth to HIV/AIDS should:
Street-Dwelling Youth to HIV/AIDS, which
Be based on the need to promote human
was held in September 2008 in Lima.
rights considering, at the very least, legal
Sexuality was highlighted by all countries as an area to be addressed through
frameworks (the international framework and those of each country).
Photograph: J. R. Ripper/Imagens Humanas
A nnexes { 141 }
Surveys indicate that
the age of children
and adolescents on
the streets in Latin
America ranges from
8 to 17 years old
See children, adolescents and young
Consider the problem from a multidis-
people as subjects with rights who can
ciplinary and intersectoral perspective
and should act upon their own lives
involving all relevant areas (health
and are, therefore, the most important
care, education, art, culture, social as-
and active actors in this process.
sistance, housing, sanitation, environ-
Ensure respect for sexual and repro-
ment, income, employment, transpor-
ductive rights in education and care for
tation, etc.).
street children and adolescents.
Consider the communities where these
Fight homophobia and ensure sexual
children and adolescents live as areas/
diversity in the process of drawing up
territories in which solidarity-based
and implementing public policies.
sustainable development projects could
Consider the specifics of gender and
be implemented in the future.
ethnicity in the process of defining and
Consider the quality of prevention, di-
implementing prevention and/or care
agnostic, care or treatment services as
actions for street boys and girls.
a right to be guaranteed.
{ 142 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
USEFUL LINKS
Casa Taiguara de Cultura e Prevenção Address: R. Treze de Maio, 353, Bixiga,
ZIP CODE 01327-000, São Paulo (SP), Phone: + 55 11 3106-3851. The website of
the NGO (http://www.casataiguara.org.br) provides information about the institution and its Art and Expression course, which trains social educators to act as art
education multipliers in shelters and referral centers for children and adolescents
(CRECAs) in São Paulo. You can also access the documentary Uma Andorinha Faz
Verão (one swallow does make a summer), by Daniela Broitman, which is about
street children and adolescents and the work of the Casa Taiguara shelter.
NGO Excola Address: R. General Justo, 275/217, Rio de Janeiro (RJ), ZIP
CODE 20012-130, Phone: + 55 21 2517-3318. The website of the organization (www.excola.org.br) provides information on projects implemented by the
NGO and links to many photos and articles about its work. In 2008, World
Vision and Excola produced a publication called Programa Jovens Mães em
Situação de Risco (Young Mothers at Risk Program), which provides detailed
information on the background and methodology of the program.
NGO Pé no Chão Address: Av. Guararapes, 86, sala 802, Santo Antônio, ZIP
CODE 50010-000, Recife (PE), Phone: + 55 81 3424-6077, email: [email protected]
terra.com.br. Several videos are available on YouTube on the art education
work carried out by the group. They are available at http://www.youtube.
com/watch?v=MZeGSfv§jiZk; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96L4liC3JbQ;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6D9UBkcoOs&feature=related; In the blog
of the institution (www.recifepenochao.blogspot.com), information is available
about its projects, as well as an agenda of activities on the streets.
Conceição Macedo Charity Institution (IBCM) Address: R. Santa Veruza,
108, ZIP CODE 41120-040, Salvador (BA), Phone: + 55 71 3450-9759. Founded in
1989 by Conceição Macedo, IBCM carries out prevention actions and assists people
living and/or coexisting with HIV/AIDS on the streets. Its main activities and projects include the full-time VIHDA Day-Care Center and the Teen Apprentice Project
(www.projetoadolescenteaprendiz.org.br), designed to ensure the access of young
people living/coexisting with HIV/AIDS to the labor market. The organization is
also engaged in rehabilitation and social mobilization activities. More information
on its projects and background can be found at: www.ibcmaids.org.br.
A nnexes { 143 }
NGO Childhope Brasil Address: Av. Gal. Fair, 275, sl. 202, bloco A, centro,
ZIP CODE 20021-130, Rio de Janeiro (RJ), phone: + 55 21 2544-7784, email:
[email protected], website: www.childhope.org.br. The organization keeps a website for the AIDS Prevention and Health and Sexuality Counseling Program (Papos) designed for teenagers, featuring games, information
about the disease and drugs, and a chat. The URL is http://www.childhope.
org.br/papos_teen/papos_teen.htm. In 2010, it also produced a publication
providing step-by-step information about the program’s methodology.
NGO Se Essa Rua Fosse Minha Address: R. Alice, 298, Laranjeiras, ZIP
CODE 22241-020, Rio de Janeiro (RJ), email: [email protected] seessarua.com.br,
tel. website: www.seessarua.org.br. A video about the work carried out by
the NGOs If This Street Were Mine and Excola in the pilot project in Rio de
Janeiro can be accessed on the web at http://vimeo.com/13752471.
Axé Project Address: Av. Estados Unidos, 161, Comércio, ZIP CODE: 40010020, Salvador (BA), Phone: + 55 71 3242-5912; email: [email protected]
org.br. On the project’s website (http://www.projetoaxe.org.br/index.php),
information on the background of the institution, whose 20th anniversary
was in 2010, and articles for download are available.
Fazendo Minha História Project At http://www.fazendohistoria.org.br/
fmh/index.htm (information on the work/activities), one will find a very useful
script of the project’s activities, with all the necessary material for carrying out
each of its actions and detailed information about its methodology and objectives.
Quixote Project Address: Av. Eng. Luís Gomes Cardim Sangirardi, 789,
ZIP CODE 04112080, São Paulo (SP), Phone: + 55 11 5083-0449, São Paulo
(SP), website: www.projetoquixote.org.br. At http://www.youtube.com/user/
QuixoteVideos#p/u/1/lU3RbHvjHf8, there is a link to the video Tangram: Ferramenta de Comunicação (Tangram: communication tool), in which educators Otávio Boemer and Artur Mucci provide detailed explanations about the
board game Trail of Urban Refugees, which they created in partnership with
street boys and girls as part of the pilot project for STD/AIDS prevention carried out with this audience.
{ 144 } W e av i n g N e t w o r k s
BIBLIOGRAPHY
RIZZINI, Irene; CALDEIR A, Paula; RIBEIRO, Rosa; CARVANO, Luiz
Marcelo; Crianças e Adolescentes com Direitos Violados. Situação de
Rua e Indicadores de Vulnerabilidade no Brasil Urbano; 1st edition
(2010); Ciespi under an agreement with the Catholic University of Rio
de Janeiro.
PRINCESWAL, Marcelo; CALDEIRA, Paula; Os Processos de Construção e
Implementação de Políticas Públicas para Crianças e Adolescentes em Situação de Rua; 1st edition (2010); Ciespi under an agreement with the Catholic
University of Rio de Janeiro.
RIZZINI, Irene; RIZZINI, Irma; A Institucionalização de Crianças no Brasil;
Ciespi, UNICEF, publishing house of the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Loyola publishing house, 2004.
BORTOLATO, Reginaldo; BRANDOLI, Regina (coordinators); Laços: Crianças, Jovens, Famílias & Aids, Associação Civil Anima, 2009.
ABREU, Domingos; Censo da Exclusão ou Falta de Inclusão nos Censos?,
Campanha Nacional de Enfrentamento à Situação de Moradia nas Ruas de
Crianças e Adolescentes, 2009.
JUNIOR, Nivaldo Carneiro ; GRAJCER , Betina; BEDOIAN, Graziela;
SIQUEIRA, Maria José; AZEVEDO, Lygia Miranda; SILVA, Lucília Nunes;
Criança em Situação de Risco Social: Limites e Necessidades da Atuação
do Profissional de Saúde, 1st edition, 2007, Medical Sciences School of the
Holy House of Mercy of São Paulo, Municipal Health Care Secretariat of
São Paulo and Quixote Project.
LESCHER, Auro Danny; GRAJCER, Bettina; BEDOIAN, Graziela; AZEVEDO, Lígia Miranda; SILVA, Lucília Nunes; PERNAMBUCO, Maurício
C. A., JUNIOR, Nivaldo Carneiro; Crianças em Situação de Risco Social:
Limites e Necessidades da Atuação do Profissional de Saúde, 2004, Medical Sciences School of the Holy House of Mercy of São Paulo, Municipal
Health Care Secretariat of São Paulo and Quixote Project.
A nnexes { 145 }
CHILDHOPE BRASIL, Papos; Metodologia do Programa de Prevenção à
Aids, Promoção e Orientação em Saúde e Sexualidade.
NOTO, Ana Regina; GALDURÓZ, José Carlos F.; NAPPO, Solange A.; CARLINI, Claudia M.A. Carlini; MOURA, Yone G.; CARLINI, E. A.; Levantamento
Nacional sobre o Uso de Drogas entre Crianças e Adolescentes em Situação
de Rua nas 27 Capitais Brasileiras, 2003, Brazilian Center for Information on
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REDE RIO CRIANÇA, A Experiência e Lições Aprendidas no Trabalho com
Crianças e Adolescentes em Situação de Rua no RJ (2001-2009).
RIZZINI, Irene, Vida nas Ruas – Crianças e Adolescentes nas Ruas: Trajetórias
Inevitáveis?, publishing house of the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro;
Loyola publishing house, 2003.
PUC-Rio, O Social em Questão – Infância: Construções Contemporâneas, 2009.
MUNICIPAL STD/AIDS PROGRAM OF SÃO PAULO; Adolescentes e
Jovens: Relatos e Indicações; 2007.
NEIVA-SILVA, Lucas; Estudo Comportamental com Crianças e Adolescentes
em Situação de Rua em Porto Alegre e Rio Grande: Uso da Técnica de Respondent Driven Sampling (RDS) para a Identificação de Comportamentos
Sexuais de Risco e Uso de Drogas, 2010.
FIPE, Censo e Contagem de Crianças e Adolescentes na Cidade de São Paulo, Municipal Social Assistance and Development Secretariat (SMADS), 2007.
RIZZINI, Irene; A Rua no Ar: Histórias de Adolescentes, 2nd edition, Ciespi, 2006.
EXCOLA, Programa Jovens Mães em Situação de Risco, 2008.
Weaving Networks is the synthesis of an initiative that
proved to be innovative: the pilot Street Boys and Girls
(MMSR in Portuguese) project, proposed by then called
National STD/AIDS Program of the Ministry of Health
(today the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department),
along with the Technical Adolescent Health Unit
(Área Técnica de Saúde do Adolescente) of the Ministry
of Health, supported by UNICEF. Using art, the project
brought together different civil society organizations
and a wide range of actors from municipal and state
administrations and the federal government with the
aim of reducing vulnerability to STD/AIDS among street
children, adolescents and youths.
Fly UP