Studio Cambridge teaches former Street Child United participants as part of a dedicated programme celebrating the charity’s 10-year anniversary
SCU provides a global platform for street children to be heard, challenging the negative perceptions of street children across the world. The aims of the charity focus on raising awareness of the unfair legislation facing children born on the streets. They do this through high-profile sporting events, as well as global summit meetings, under the slogan “I am somebody”.
To celebrate Street Child United’s 10-year anniversary, the charity have invited ten former SCU participants and change-makers of the future to take part in a personal development programme called ‘Change 10’. The programme focuses on leadership and other soft skills, English language, communication skills, advocacy learning and personal growth. It runs from May 2020 – May 2021 and Studio Cambridge is delivering the English language training.
The ‘Change 10’ programme
Participating Young Leaders will:
- gain certification in English language and sports training
- develop their soft skills
- have access to opportunities to speak about their experiences to different audiences
- receive work experience in the field of their choice
- create impact in their own communities
- extend their network and create strong links with the other participants
The full programme is 4 stages and takes place online or in person (back home):
- 1 – Developing soft skills
- 2 – Skill Building
- 3 – English Language
- 4 – Delivering workshops back home
Designed to boost the 10 young leaders’ personal development goals, the hope is that the programme will empower them to speak out on behalf of street-connected young people just like them. And, as a result, inspire people across the world to take action.
Stage 3 – English Language
The English language course runs for 10 weeks and all lessons take place online. It aims to improve the students’ knowledge of the language, as well as build on what the students have already learned in stages 1 and 2. We are almost half-way through the programme and we are pleased to say that everybody is progressing very well!
Who are the participants?
- Abdallah (Egypt)
- Drika and Jessica (Brazil)
- Ibrar and Husnain (Pakistan)
- Jhoselin and Denya (Bolivia)
- Eswari and Nagalakshmi (India)
- Sadock (Tanzania)
Drika was born and raised by her grandmother in Northern Brazil. She was one of ten children, and the family had no electric lights, TV, or stove. When Drika was 14, her grandmother died. After that, that she went to live with her mother and stepfather in Rio de Janeiro, but was thrown out and, as a consequence, ended up ‘couchsurfing’.
Things began to change for the better when Drika started training with Favela Street, a Foundation in Brazil who use the power of street football to create a new generation of strong role models in marginalised communities. She went on to represent Brazil at the Street Child World Cup Rio 2014, as team captain. Since then, Street Child United have built a football pitch in Complexo da Penha, with the support of GM Chevrolet. Drika is now a community coach and acts as an inspirational role model and leader for the children of the community.
In 2015, Drika studied English at Studio Cambridge alongside 7 other SCU students as part of a programme called Cambridge Ambassadors. She was named by the BBC in their top 100 most inspiring women in the world in 2017.
“Of the children living and working on the streets of Rio de Janeiro, the vast majority come from areas like Complexo. Every day the young people are at risk of exploitation and violence from drug gangs and the police and gunfights on the streets often break out.
I like challenges: because spending two months away from home with different people, different food and also different language, it’s not easy. But knowledge is not bought. And my English will improve a lot, I can’t miss the great opportunities that appear in life.”
‘Change 10’ is also contributing to the wider SCU mission because it is changing societal attitude towards street-connected young people. As a result of awareness-raising and understanding, these young people are being protected, respected and supported to realise their potential.
If you are interested in helping SCU improve the lives of street-connected children and would like to make a donation to the charity you can do so here: