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Helping kids in Fortaleza, Brazil

A project from Tor zur Hoffnung e.V.
in Fortaleza, Brazil

Dito Escolinha in Fortaleza, Brazil, is a unique project that utilizes Sport to keep kids away from a career in violence, crime and drugs and offers them a real alternative. Learning at school and social integration are supported and promoted.

S. Heins
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Our predominant goal is to offer kids and young adults new prospects and an enable them to live a decent life.

This is why we have become involved with Dito Escolinha's Beach Soccer School in Fortaleza. The former international beach soccer player, “Dito”, is an exemplary volunteer and initiator on the ground, who we believe deserves plenty of support. The project is an excellent example of how a great idea can offer true future prospects. As he himself says, “Every hour of Beach Soccer is an hour, where the kids are kept out of criminal trouble.”

Many kids have already been able to break the vicious circle of hopelessness, drugs and violence thanks to his help. The idea works! Kids who, for the first time, are able to experience things like team spirit and begin to feel a sense of belonging to a happy and playful community are then able to respect their environment and even regularly attend school. Dito, who is by profession a teacher, and other volunteers privately tutor the poorest children and accompany them on their educational path. What's more, many family relations of the kids have suddenly become enthusiastic fans and players and developed, as a result, a newfound feeling of solidarity.

Social values and rules can be positively conveyed through Street Football and the sport offers a fantastic opportunity for social integration.

An extremely positive side-effect: Drug-dealing and prostitution have had to find a new home. The “soocer pitch” and the regular sports activity in the area has made the neighbouring slums a safer place and keeps the kids away from bad influences.