Their last supper?

A ‘last supper’ with friends in Rio for Dave & Shelagh – but will this be their last!

Dave & Shelagh have been supporting the team at the Living and Learning Project through challenging times as there was a real possibility, and what looked like probability, that the project would have to close its doors. Thankfully the doors are to remain open.

Their last supper??

Their last supper??

Dave and Shelagh have a last meal with friends connected to the project, Rose, Beth and Tom before returning home to Longridge.

Will they go back to Rio?

Will this be their last meal with these wonderful people?

Somehow I don’t think so!

Welcome home Dave & Shelagh – don’t unpack the suitcases!!

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Guess who!


Guess who?

Guess who?

Not from outer space – but some times thought to be so

Great fun and a great sport

Loves dressing up and getting others to do the same

Generous of heart and soul

Retired but younger than most in mind and spirit

Mad as a hatter

Presently in Rio with hubby Dave, Beth, Monica and the gang from the project

Send your answers via ‘comment’ and the first right answer will receive a trip of a life time!”

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Being instrumental!

Dave & Shelagh Ricardson are on a mission to acquire musical instruments for young people in Rio. Here is an extract from a recent email:

You may (or may not know) for the last 18 months we have been working with the To Ligado project in Rio de Janeiro which works with children from the local favelas (slums). As well as the vital educational support the project gives them they also try to raise the childrens’ self esteem and bring out any hidden talent they may have but the Brasilian educational system will never Identify and/or develop. One of the most exciting aspects of the work is with Tom Ashe ((a fellow Yorshireman) who is introducing music to the children and is training them  to play in the favelas as part of the Carnival Blocos. This will be a first for the city. In the last 12 months we have witnessed   remarkable progress and they are already performing in public  and have appeared on Rio TV – BUT they still need to practice more outside the project. At the moment Instrument’s cannot be allowed into all their homes as they will be sold/swopped for drugs/alcohol etc etc.. Tom is setting up “safe bases” in each of the neighbouring favelas where instruments can be left so the children can go every day to practice.

Instruments are very expensive in Brasil and unlike the UK second hand instruments are very rare. Could you please :

Let me know if you have or hear of or come across any cheap (or free) second hand brass and woodwind instruments – we can probably collect anywhere in the UK

Let me know if you are planning to visit Rio (or Brasil) anytime in the next 6 months and if you have space for just such an instrument – you will be guaranteed a warm welcome at the project (and all the curry you can eat at Toms Curry Club)



I know all of this is a long shot but worth a try. The picture we enclose is  the star of the band, Duda, she cant read and write, until recently had never been to the nearby beach, doesn’t know her birthday and is  mainly looked after  by her 11 year old sister BUT is always happy, has a hidden musical talent and a desire to develop it.

If you can help please get in touch with Dave and Shelagh at:

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Back around the hearth

Full of life, adventure and mischief are two local volunteers, Dave and Shelagh Richardson, have landed back home just in time for Christmas.

On their second campaign to the Living & Learning Project Dave and Shelagh shared all their vast knowledge and skills in teaching and youth work with young people from Santa Teresa. A long side a team of international volunteers and local staff they provided opportunities for young people to help build self esteem and engagement with their local communities through music, art and excursions.

Dave & Shelagh

Cheers guys – when does the third campaign start?


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Living in Rio and never been to the beach

Dave our volunteer in Rio has added a little more detail to the beach trip.

fin At least 2 of the children had never been to a beach before and most never that close to Sugar Loaf mountain. The hardest part of the day was getting them out of the sea when it was time to leave. Any doubts we may have had about the value of these trips out  were quickly dispelled. It was great to see the children allowed to be children for a short time Dave

I was shocked to learn that some children had not visited the beach despite  living so close, but more shocked by  the assumptions I make about other peoples lives.

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Self catering,getting lost…loving every minute

Dave & Shelagh
Great newsy journal update from Dave and Shelagh who are now into their third week at the Living & Learning project in Rio.

First Week.
Arrived tired but safe to be picked up at the airport by Beth. Lots of hugs. 4 big bags packed with teaching resources and some musical instruments for Tom (much much cheaper in the UK than Brasil). One bag weighed 28 kilos – good old TAP. Drive to the house in Santa Teresa to meet the landlady – a friend (and fellow Psychologist) of Beths. Quick Beer at midnight at the local bar then straight to sleep- very hard bed but made no difference ! ! Have our own shower/toilet and share kitchen, living spaces with 4 others – Richard (English), Anna (half English/Portugeuse), Sylvain (French) and Hamilton (Brasilian).

Dave up early to go to shops for bread. Took a wrong turn out of the gate and…. Continue reading

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Volunteers greeted by friends old and new

Dave and Shelagh return
Volunteers Dave and Shelagh received a wonderful warm welcome from all involved in the Living & Learning project when they returned last week for a further two months.
As you can see, Shelagh has already got busy making masks ready for the Halloween party.

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An inspiration

Flying homeI want to thank David and Shelagh for their inspirational work in bringing about a better understanding between the peoples of my home country and commmunities here in England.  I hope their inspiration will encourage others to follow in their footsteps.

There is a great article in the Longridge News about their experience in Rio that I found inspirational. If you get the chance it is well worth reading.

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Home again…is it really three months ?

Yes! That’s how long it is since we hovered around the flight check -in  desk with a large bag, ready to rescue items if the  dreaded  ‘over weight’  phrase was uttered.   But we needn’t have worried because Dave and Sheila judged it perfectly.  As they have throughout their  three month volunteer placement at the Living and Learning Project in Rio.  Meeting them from the flight was just as exciting  as waving  them off.

Hi Everyone,

Uneventful and peaceful journey home just 12 hours in the air with one stop in Lisbon; raining hard at Manchester and very  cold.  Thanks to Sara and Cloe for leaving our house so tidy and for the welcome home flowers. Busy unpacking and trying to stay awake till at least 9pm.                                                                                                                                       Massive thanks to everybody in what has been our second home, for all their love and support over the last 90 days.  However, we are also excited to be meeting up with old friends before and during Christmas – Paz e amor –

Xila and Dave

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A convent with a view and a new career for Shelagh

Join Shelagh as she takes  us a  bird’s eye view  of  the volunteer house,  the local Santa Teresa   district  and then further afield to the iconic sights of Rio.

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