giovedì 10 dicembre 2015

NemO's FOME ZERO in Brazil

Fome Zero, in  Portuguese means absence of hunger, is a government project introduced  by former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in 2003 to fight poverty and hunger prevalent in the South American country. In the last ten years the program's provided direct financial aid to the poorest families, the construction of water cisterns in the arid areas of Brazil, but also the distribution of vitamins and nutritional supplements, and free meals in the schools for children with family situations most economically critical also. Fome Zero seems to work, the Government of Brazil and FAO declare a clear progress with positive data about life expectancy of those 44 million of Brazilians who live a life of misery without rights, without adequate sanitation, without education for children, without a future and abandoned in the maze of shacks, that's stretching for kilometers on the outskirts of the city with luxurious hotels and tourist villas of those can afford everything.

Unfortunately, the problem isn't hunger.

It's a social situation much more complex and tragic, aggravated by the presence of a social gap opened between rich and poor people and where hunger is just one of the consequences. A project based on a charitable mechanism can only be used as a temporary stopgap emergency. But Fome Zero has been going on for ten years and the social gap still looms on the part of the poorest population that, by continuing to be ghettoized, can't see emancpation in their future.

The government should concentrate forces to create the conditions favorable to the emancipation of the poorest part of the population, proposing integration programs, Not just charity. A project must be only temporary and aimed at creating the basis for a more complex program to give meaningful results.

The free meals in schools for children of the poorest families are paradoxical if the majority of these children do not attend school but very often they are forced to work, stealing, begging or prostitution.
In Fortaleza I met a 13 year boy. For three years he lived in the street, alone.

I drew this man, that sews his mouth, trying to describe the great mistake of the project Fome Zero. Fome Zero. This is a paradoxical image of the people that received subsidies or free meals through the program Fome Zero, where the absence of hunger isn't like an opportunity for emancipation of a society too poor to send their children to school or to provide goods necessities. It's as if this program, through almsgiving, had sewn his mouth to all those people leaving them unable to free themselves, to protest and to hear their real needs and canceling the lament of hunger that every person can have in a situation so tragic.
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