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Today, about 51% of the population are children and young people between 0 and 25 years old, inserted in the following scenario of schooling and work:


12% did not study; 68% have elementary education; 19% high school and 1% higher education. The occupational situation, on the other hand, indicates: registered employees 28.37%; students 14.43%; self-employed 20.37%; unemployed 9.99%; housewives 9.41%; temporary workers 8.25%; mades/cleaners without contract 3.31%, among other forms of insertion in the market (Source: Censo 2010).


City of the Sun

Heliópolis has approximately 1 million square meters and is located in the southeastern region of the city of São Paulo, 8 km from the center. Today, around 200 thousand inhabitants live in its area, which makes Heliópolis the largest favela (slum) in São Paulo and the second largest in Latin America (Source: Wikifavelas).


The old shacks gave rise to brick constructions and the reality of the territory has changed a lot over the years, but the population growth has brought several new local problems. Social vulnerability still affects many families, most maintened by single mothers, who are the only providers.

Heliópolis, since the 90's, was already denser than its immediate surroundings. This density was intensified over time, especially in the northern part, between 2000 and 2010. About 85% of the residents are migrants from Northeast Brazil.


The context of high social vulnerability in Heliópolis is expressed by a large number of precarious housing, low levels of education and precariousness in the labor market. The local population is mainly composed of poor unemployed workers, in informal working conditions and remuneration or even excluded from productive relations. Low levels of social welfare are aggravated by environmental issues, low coverage of sewage collection, absence of selective garbage collection and soil and water contamination - consequences of disorderly growth.


And to serve this youth with low access to culture, numerous projects have been created over the decades. Based on the achievements of different organizations, today it is one of the communities with the greatest cultural effervescence in Brazil, a reference for other slums and poor communities. Heliópolis is today a favela that has a radio station and a community library with more than 12,000 books, a symphony orchestra, a theater company, a capoeira project, 41 graffiti panels and a publishing house to give voice to local writers. In addition, there is also  three decades project that intends to give Heliópolis the title of “Educational Neighborhood”, a concept created from the correlation between quality of education and community participation (UNAS).

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