Bela Rua: Conectados Project

Bela Rua: Conectados Project

The CONECTADOS Project, idealized by Bela Rua and Cultural Connection, is a free tool that facilitates and stimulates the exchange of knowledge and services among refugees, immigrants (who arrived in Brazil due to vulnerability — social, political, economic or environmental) and Brazilians. It promotes products and services that refugees and immigrants have to offer, empowering them and giving visibility to their skills and culture. The project is a responsive website that in a simple way provides the citizen with access to the services and products that each refugee / immigrant can offer within categories linked to the creative economy (music, languages, dance, cooking, crafts, among others).

The issue of refugees is one of the main current issues, intensely debated on the international scene, involving various political and social questions. Over the past four and a half years, the number of refugees in Brazil has almost doubled — from 4,218 in 2011 to 8,400 in 2015, and now in 2017 10.000, according to data from the Ministry of Justice. Totalitarian governments and armed conflicts are among the main causes of these migratory movements, and today Brazil is an alternative for many people in the search for refuge. Seeking to extract a positive side of a theme so complex and problematic, the project promotes the communication and the encounter of different cultures, at the same time, actively inserts the refugees in the Brazilian culture. The site allows refugees / immigrants to share, express themselves, open up to new experiences and put their skills into practice.

Conectados, comes as a light on such current and controversial issues involving immigrants and refugees. An example of respect and opportunity for strangers in a situation of vulnerability, living in a city that breathes other cultures and receives people from all over the world. The Project came precisely to touch on this point. Through it we want to encourage and show the potentiality of the foreigner. We believe in exchanges between cultures, in empathy, in the different. The project touches on all these points, while welcoming people who are experiencing a very large vulnerability.

There are more than 170 product / service profiles in the categories: Lectures, fashion, music, gastronomy, handicrafts, visual arts, classes and dance.

Lectures: In this category we have several themes such as: Women in Africa, History and Arab Philosophy, Hip Hop Culture, Arab Cuisine, Immigrants and Refugees Rights, Human and Child Rights, History and Culture of Cuba, among others

Fashion: In the fashion category you can find products such as the sale of Bolivian, African and Arab accessories and clothing as well as sewing services. In addition, it has profiles of stylists and hairdressers. Http://

Music: In the music category you will find various musical talents such as singer, percussionists, violinist, trumpeter among others … In addition, it is possible to hire bands already formed to play in events, bringing some of its local culture. Http://

Handicrafts: In the handicrafts category you will find different products of different cultures, such as: African dolls, the lucky frog a traditional Bolivian culture object, Bolivian dolls, Arab decorations. Http://

Visual Arts: In the painting category you can find varied services and products respecting the visual arts. There is Alberto Valencia, a photographer who sells photos he took over 50 years ago about Bolivian culture, has Raheel who came from Pakistan and produces several oil paintings. In addition, you can get to know the works of some plastic artists and illustrators. Http://

Lessons: In the lectures you will find classes of different languages ​​like: English, Spanish, French and others. There are also classes on landscaping, cinema, sewing, carpentry, Arabian cuisine, African cuisine …

Dance: In the dance category we have several teachers who approach typical dances of their cultures: African, Haitian, Salsa, Zumba, Arabic dance among others. Http://

Cooking: In this category you will find several delights to order and also different profiles to hold gastronomic events. In this category there is a variety of Arab, Haitian, Bolivian …

Article by Bela Rua