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Tio Lino - Project Partner Interview with coordinator Iris Silva

Tell us a bit about yourself...

I am 31 years old and have been leading the project for eight years. I want to show the children that they can make their dreams come true. My purpose is always to help and support them.

How did you first come up with the idea of your projects?

My father decided to create a project that would give the children a second home. A place with love and where they could expand their knowledge.

Tell us a little about the project.

The project’s activities include tutoring to support schooling, dance, arts and photography to develop education, creativity, social integration, body awareness and much more.

...and the plans for the future?

The project’s future plans are to help more children, and their families, expanding its activities.

How many people do the projects reach?

The project helps over 30 children at this time. The door is always open so that the children are free to come and go at will.

What is your proudest moment working on these projects?

My proudest achievement is knowing that there are children who want to be teachers so that they can work in the project and help other children – as they were helped.

What is it like being a woman in a favela?

It is difficult being a woman in a favela. We are born knowing that we will have to fight against prejudices.

The main strengths of favela women include being warriors, being determined and intelligent, and being empowered.

What are the main challenges, especially in relation to the education of young girls?

The main challenge related to young women is trying to break the existing family cycle. To show young women that they can go to university.

Do you have a role model? Tell us about them and why you admire them.

Yes, the person I most admire is my father. He helped me become the woman I am today. He taught me to love the world, to help and respect others without expecting something in return.

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