Sunday, December 18, 2016

Community in Action

Rocinha is the biggest favela in Brazil with aproximately 300,000 people. Favelas are the poor working class areas that can be seen on the hillsides of Rio. There are many here who struggle to earn a basic living, especially considering the minimum wage of about 800 reais a month. So its not surprising to see many initiatives taking place here.  The community helps itself especially around christmas time. This is just one of many things going on inside the favela.

A friend of mine told me about this event happening at the bottom of Rocinha. There was this event called Acao Social "Guerreiros de Corte" (Social Action Warrior Cutters). The event was held at the Pracinha da Roupa Suja where they usually have sports like football, basketball and volleyball. They also hold music shows and other community events there.

The event took place last week. But I have been so busy with other things. This hair cutting event was to help those in need. Bring a kilo of rice, beans, flour or some other dry food and receive a free haircut. I really needed a haircut and this was the perfect opportunity to also help out.

I brought 3 kilos of food since I thought this was more of the value of a hair cut. Normally in Rocinha haircuts at a barber cost anywhere from 12-20 reais. So I spent about this amount on my 3 kilos of food.

This was my barber "Bruce da Sabotagem" who I found out has a barber shop about 10 minutes walk from my house.

Bruce working on my hair. After he cut my hair I offered a tip and he refused and said, "No, Zezinho, this is a community project, so no money". I was impressed by these young men!

There was a line of 3 people before me so I waited and walked around taking photos of all the barbers and the particpants. It was nice to see so much support but I see this often during holidays. The community creating events that support those less fortunate.

Here are some photos from the event.

One of the organizers decided to film the barbers in action.

For the younger kids, Spiderman made an appearance.