Cinema, theater, swimming pool, nature, boat trips and animals: a different kind of vacation at Saint Monica Home
The Saint Monica Home of Fortaleza (Ceará, Brazil), a socio-educational project of the Augustinian Recollects, has a boarding school system; The beneficiaries have been sent here by the competent authorities in matters of minors (whether they are courts or guardianship councils), and they spend their entire lives in the Home.
The reason was the need to remove them from a context and environment in which they have suffered some type of violation of their rights, without the possibility of recovering within that aggressor space: violence, abuse, commercial exploitation, abandonment, dropping out of school…
One of the main forms of help that the beneficiaries receive is precisely the regulation of life with a series of routines, schedules and responsibilities. All this serves to control the management of time and emotions, gain self-responsibility and self-management of life, eliminate unhealthy idleness and the dangers of "doing nothing".
However, as in adult life, there are stages and times when breaking routines is also therapeutic and necessary. In the case of the beneficiaries of Saint Monica Home, school vacations are an opportunity to do different things, fun but equally educational, and with a much more liberal management of time and space.
For this, a whole series of different activities are scheduled and in places other than the Saint Monica Home itself; this is impossible during school time, when preference is given to attending school (formal education) in external centers and to school support activities and classrooms within the facilities of the Home itself (Saint Augustine Cultural Center).
This July the beneficiaries have taken advantage of the holidays to carry out multiple cultural activities, connection with Nature and fun. Thus, at the São Luiz Cinema Theater they have been able to see several films; and at the Itapark Club in Itaitinga they have enjoyed the refreshing pools.
One of the visits that the little ones were most excited about was the Sargento Prata Municipal Zoo. Seeing live and direct so many species that they knew from cartoons or television documentaries amazed them.
They also visited the Celina Queiroz Theater and enjoyed musical shows at the SESC Theater, took a boat ride along the mouth of the Ceará River and had a day at the beach in one of the most famous beaches in the capital of Ceará, the Future Beach.
In their faces you can see the joy of learning, the curiosity to visit places and do new things, the strengthening of coexistence outside the usual inhabitant and in a fun context that, at the same time, arouses their interest and intelligence.
In almost all cases they are also new experiences that they had never before had the opportunity to live in their contexts of origin, impeded by the lack of resources or interest in the world of culture, art and science in the adults with whom they live. they lived with or on whom they depended.
On the other hand, this quality leisure has a direct impact on their way of seeing life, their well-being, their quality of life, and the increase in their capacities for empathy and interrelation. His return to the classroom and to the routine will now be much more bearable.