“Love is inventive to infinity!” This phrase, spoken by Saint Vincent, referring to the inventiveness of Jesus who remains with us in the Eucharist, may well reflect what the project “Routes to the Future” means. This project arose from listening to the reality of impoverished children and families of our institution and its surroundings. To go out the door, to go out to meet! With creativity, commitment, sweat of the brows, strength of the arms, affection and effectiveness, we put into action the service of Jesus Christ present in poor persons that we serve in the city of Assis/São Paulo
The “Routes to the Future” aims to serve students, their families and the entire community of the children’s home, Dom Antonio José dos Santos Vincentian Child Education Center located in Assis, in the interior of São Paulo. The project carries out its activities for children and teenagers between 7 and 13 years old whose socio-cultural and economic contexts are extremely vulnerable, with the aim of promoting their development.
Through various activities, we work to avoid the aggravation of social vulnerabilities, even achieving a decrease in the violence and inequality indexes already identified in the municipality of Assis. We seek a better quality of life for the children through sports, cooking and gardening. With these, they are stimulated to grow out of marginalization, strengthening family and community ties.
In sports, the target participants are divided into two groups: boys and girls. They play basketball and daily training takes place, preparing them for competitions in the city or in other municipalities. Sports covers physical, psychological and emotional development, among other benefits.
Gardening aims to make families aware of the importance of healthy eating, conservation and care of food. They are encouraged to plant and consume products of high nutritional value. Vegetables and fruit trees are planted by the children themselves with guidance from competent people.
Cooking aims to show the importance of appreciating food by raising greater awareness of the use of the senses of smell, taste and touch and to acquaint children with various culinary arts. The children partake of the food that they themselves prepared.
We, Sisters, try to be always present to the children to encourage them to fully participate. We seek to provide well-being, better quality of life and deeper learning for each one as well as for their families. We are all beneficiaries of this project: Sisters, parents and members of their families and, society, in general because we are certain that these children will grow with a different outlook on life through the practice of sports and the appreciation of food since they themselves will be able to plant, cultivate, prepare and share with others, thus opening new paths to the future!
Sisters in mission at the Children’s Home, Dom Antônio José dos Santos, Assis, São Paulo