TRANSFORMATIVE POWER OF MUSIC
A firm believer in the formative and transformative role of art, since 2007, Associação Sol Maior has been dedicated to offering free music education to children and adolescents in situations of social vulnerability. In 2017, Sol Maior is celebrating its 10th anniversary of activities with a solid structure and plans for the future, recognized nationally by the project Criança Esperança, by Rede Globo/Unesco, as one of the institutions to be included in 2018.
A not-for-profit, educational private association established under civil law, Sol Maior caters to 410 children and adolescents in situations of social vulnerability, reaching an indirect public of 1,460 people. Over 1,200 people have already been directly benefited by the institution, which works towards social transformation through music – instrumental and choir – and dance, and through the cultivation of solid values, such as respect, discipline, ethics, responsibility and solidarity. With this focus in mind, since its establishment, the NGO has been developing a project aimed at changing the future of underprivileged children and youths.
The project encompasses people from regions of social vulnerability in Porto Alegre, aimed at children and adolescents aged from 7 to 17 years old and that are regularly enrolled in public school. Project actions strive to comply with the Children and Adolescent Statute, which provides access to social protection. As such, Sol Maior is registered with the CMAS (Municipal Social Assistance Board) and the CMDCA (Municipal Board for Children and Adolescent Rights).
Sol Maior was created in 2007 by Maria Teresa Campos and Cesar Franarin, headquartered at Fundação Pão dos Pobres and with only 50 students. In 2012, it moved to the Multipalco complex at Theatro São Pedro, catering then to some 130 children and adolescents in partnership with the Theatro São Pedro Friends Association. In 2014, due to constant and growing demand, the entity tripled its number of students, allocating resources to ACBERGS – Rio Grande do Sul Community Kindergarten Association – , in the community of Humaitá.
Nowadays, the institution has a team of 20 people, including coordinators, educators, monitors, administrative assistants and advisors.
HOW IT WORKS
Students have workshops twice a week in their chosen modalities, which include guitar, cavaquinho, mandolin, key board, flute, percussion and drums, as well as choir singing and dance. Students are thus offered an integrated opportunity to interact with a range of music modalities.
The workshops are held by teaches with degrees in music and dance, at the Multipalco complex of Theatro São Pedro. At ACBERGS, in the neighborhood of Humaitá, workshops are administered by teachers and monitors.
The project also offers social and cultural activities to students, providing an agenda for outings, visits to institutions, tickets to theater performances and musicals.
Sol Maior hosts an annual show at the end of the year with over 100 students taking to the stage of Theatro São Pedro, the oldest and most prestigious theater in the state capital. Presentations are also staged in various other venues, such as parks and public spaces. In addition, it undertakes Social Responsibility efforts, taking music and dance exhibitions to social and community centers, like shelters, homes for the elderly and hospitals in Porto Alegre.
Joy, support, a sense of belonging and hope for the future are some of the expressions used by Sol Maior students, when talking about the project’s impact on their lives. Good school performance, increased discipline and a sense of being welcome are some of the results reported by benefactors and their families, forming a veritable community.
To promote the development of children and teenagers who are in socially vulnerable situations, using a musical and dance education to create opportunities for them to fully reach their potential as people and citizens.
To be a reference organization in the development of citizenship in children and teenagers through an education in music and dance.
• SOCIAL INCLUSION as a goal
• Relationships based on TRUST and mutual RESPECT
• Focusing on SOLIDARITY and CITIZENSHIP
• Music and dance as sources of JOY and HAPPINESS
• DISCPLINE and RESPONSIBILITY in what we do
• QUALITY musical and dance education
• VOLUNTEER WORK as an agent of change