Date: April 12, 2019
On April 12, 2019, Eveline Tegelaar, Gerko Snel and Timo Ouwendijk travelled to the islands of Goiabal in the state of Maranhão, Brazil. While we were in the area visiting suppliers, we included a trip to the community to meet the people and choose a location for our school. Upon arrival, we received a very warm welcome!
It was trip of mixed feelings; on the one hand shocked by the extreme poverty and lack of basic facilities, and on the other hand extremely grateful that we will be able to make a difference here.
They explained to us that many politicians had promised to build a school over the past few years, but those were nothing more than false promises, mainly during election time. The community had been disappointed many times. It became very apparent how necessary our involvement is. None of the primary needs such as schooling, health facilities or clean drinking water are readily available.
There is a small building which was being used as a school, but it has been 4 months since the teacher showed up for the last time. For this reason, our partnership with the local NGO Instituto Carnauba is crucial. According to Silvania -manager of Instituto Carnauba- it is very important to follow all legal procedures and set up a clear agreement with the local government, since they are now obliged to send sufficient teachers and appropriate school material for these students. We expect to inaugurate the school in Q3 2020.