From different parts of Brazil, and from different areas of work and expertise, a third of AVSI employees in Brazil gathered for three days in Salvador, some 80 or so people. With them were the Secretary-General and the Chief Administrative Officer of AVSI Foundation from Milan, AVSI representatives in Haiti and Peru, and local partner organizations.
By Fabrizio Pellicelli, CEO of AVSI Brasil
Various topics were discussed, like the relationship between business and development, respect for human rights in the experience of the Association for Protection of and Assistance to the Condemned (APAC), the experiences of reusing water from the houses of the small family producers in the nearly desert areas of Brazil, the new regional collaboration between AVSI Brazil and AVSI Peru.
At the center of concern were how to deal with the growing violence in the favelas, the role of people and educational projects in these contexts, how they can become elements of prevention and development, on how to take advantage of the memory of the places, beauty and positivity that always exist in any context. The testimony of the path taken by a former student of various educational projects in the "Novos Alagados" community of Salvador. Jackson Santos Conceição captivated the audience, confirming that the development is born from the encounter with people who accompany you to "choose the path of good and not evil".
The theory of this path is that daily work should not be characterized by uncertainty and fear, an easy feeling in Brazil, a country in constant recession and where each year approximately 60,000 people are murdered, but gives the possibility of generating a new humanism.
Julian de la Morena, manager of CL in Latin America, recollecting Pope Francis, cited three keywords to found a new humanism: integration, communication and generation. As recalled by AVSI's Secretary-General, these words can be declared of our work with this meaning: integrating various stakeholders to meet the challenge of sustainable development that focuses on the person; communicating with reality and different contexts from a cultural and social perspective, constructing bridges and not walls; promoting the education of individuals able to communicate a different view of mankind.
AVSI exists to be a companion for the people we meet, first of all for our 318 colleagues, through whom we reach over 300,000 people. AVSI Brazil, as a local NGO, is one of the bodies born of AVSI's history in this great country, it has inherited our legacy and keeps our mission alive, even in an institutional setting. Today, AVSI Brazil is a self-governing and autonomous stakeholder in the development of human capital and professional skills, but it is always tied to AVSI Foundation as it is recognized as coming from the same source and with the same ideals. The challenge now facing AVSI Brazil is to enter into its personal challenges with enthusiasm, alongside all its colleagues, to contribute as much as possible and in the most dynamic way to the development of the people it will meet along the way.