Favelas of Fortaleza in the picture

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Fortaleza, one of the most violent cities of Brazil. With the upcoming Olympic Games we wondered what this event would bring the people in the favelas. Would the women benefit? Or the children? Does anything change at all?

Fortaleza We listened to the stories of young girls, children still and women working in prostitution. It is the only way to gain an income in the favelas of Fortaleza which are dominated by drugs and crime.

Favelas of Fortaleza in the picture

Favelas where schools and jobs have disappeared since long and where family ties are sometimes strong but mostly destructive. Many women become pregnant at a young age, start using crack supplied by the equally young men from their neighborhood.

Than they have to be even more on the streets to deal with the economic demand of their addiction. “How do you break the cycle?”, we wondered. “By relying on God,” was the invariable reply. We dared to question that but sometimes God indeed shimmered throughout our stay.

In the form of young nuns who, armed with a dose of humor, permeated the favelas to provide practical support.Favelas, the rest of humanity has since long deserted. Politicians, doctors nor the police ever go there. We followed the nuns and listened to the heartbreaking accounts of the women in the favelas.

Women and children

In this series, we portray the women and children of the favelas of Fortaleza.

Read the story about our detention in the favela.

Tekst: Anneke de Bundel – Beeld: Nicole Franken

This story came about at the invitation of Free a Girl, a NGO dedicated to rescue young girls from forced prostitution in brothels and to prosecuting the offenders.

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