17.04.2013 - UNESCO Office in Brasilia

Apoena showcases social art at Fashion Rio

© Bete Faria Nicastro -Marlova Noleto (UNESCO), Maurício de Sousa, Katia Ferreira (Apoena) and Mônica de Sousa

On 16 April the Rio Fashion Week spring-summer 2013/14 parade, held in Rio de Janeiro from 15 to 19 April, exhibited the result of the work of a project of the Pro-education and Health Institute (Proeza). The Apoena brand was created by the Proeza Institute to market the work of mothers they have assisted. The collection was presented in honor of 50 years of Turma da Monica, Mauricio de Sousa’s comic book series, well known to all Brazilians.

Maurício de Sousa and his daughters Monica and Magali, his inspiration for the comics, had front row seats for the event. 44 designs were shown, most of them made by hand.

Marlova Jovchelovitch Noleto, the Coordinator of the Social and Human Sciences Sector at UNESCO Office in Brasilia, who has accompanied the work of the Proeza Institute over many years, was also present.  She said that "the work of the Apoena brand represents an enormous achievement for all mothers who strive to change their situation through art. It is a milestone for the Criança Esperança Programme, which has made the realization of this breakthrough possible." The collection was coordinated by Katia Ferreira, who also coordinates the Institute.

The Proeza Institute operates in Brasilia and receives support from the Criança Esperança Programme, run by Globo TV network in partnership with UNESCO. The Institute works with women in socially vulnerable situations, and their children, through recreational, cultural and artistic activities and supplementary schooling. These are children and adolescents between 6 and 14 years old with a history of child labor, domestic violence, and sexual abuse in a state of socioeconomic vulnerability in Recanto das Emas in the Federal District (Brazil).

The project’s goal is to develop programs for generating income for the women using a therapeutic approach employing needlework as a tool for emotional recovery. Each woman, accompanied by a psychologist, embroiders images representing her journey through life. Self-knowledge and readiness to deal with conflict is reflected in the strengthening of family ties and a safer environment for children and young people. The project is working towards productive social inclusion for these women, enabling them and providing the necessary tools for developing and empowering the group, with a view to increasing family income and stimulating sustainable local socioeconomic development, focused on gender equality.

Information for the press

UNESCO Office in Brasilia
Ana Lúcia Guimarães, ana.guimaraes@unesco.org.br , 61-2106 3536
Isabel de Paula, isabel.paula@unesco.org.br , 61-2106 3538

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