Own goals

People get the Government they deserve, so the saying goes. But maybe in Brazil a more accurate paraphrasing might be… people get the government they have been paid for.


The footballs laid out in front of the Congress building in Brasilia, one for each congress member, are symbolising that the ball is now in the Congress court and they should get on with anti corruption reforms.  Such as eradicating the practice of vote buying. However, this only happens because people are prepared to sell their vote! It is up to each individual voter to bring about the changes they want to see happen.

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Heralding the sunset

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Travel without turnstiles

It may surprise you to know that the  public transport buses in Brazil each have a turnstile and a very narrow one at that. (Based on personal experience).


Another surprise might be to learn how the mass  protests got started. Look no further than the  strapline which is one of the  slogans of  the Free Fare Movement a small group that campaigns  for free public transport,  which incidentally already occurs in some cities across the world including a smattering in the UK. The group of young  activists have admitted to being more than a little surprised themselves at the outpouring of frustration and dissatisfaction, with the government,  that their protest over  a public transport hike  sparked across Brazil.
The next surprise was that  within a couple of weeks the group had the  ear of the President and the people had the promise of a referendum on political reform.

Lets hope that this is a watershed and Brazil and its people have begun to change the endemic culture of corruption.

Eraldo Peres/Associated Press President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil, right, on Monday met with representatives of the Free Fare Movement, the group that ignited the protests.

Eraldo Peres/Associated Press
President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil, right, on Monday met with representatives of the Free Fare Movement, the group that ignited the protests.

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Taking to the Streets

ifVINBlondonSmWe need to be the change that the world needs!

Volunteer in Brazil trustees along with CAFOD supporters from Clitheroe and many thousands more in Hyde Park joined the IF Campaign to call on world leaders to create a more just and sustainable world. It would seem that across the globe people are taking to the streets to demand change. Our present world order of putting profit before people has to change if we are to create a world in which all people can live dignified and fulfilling lives in harmony with the natural world.

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Reaching out …


nelsonMandelaSometimes it falls upon a generation to be great, you can be that generation. Let your greatness blossom.

Nelson Mandela

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Carla’s not going to the World Cup

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Victory for the voice of the people

Dear friends,

protestCrowdI am living in one of his best political moments of the past 20 years!

People are  frustrated and disillusioned with the political parties that serve only their own interests and have taken responsibility and mobilized themselves to protest over the political corruption which is seen as ones of the main causes of inequality and poverty in our country. They are calling for the resignation of the congressional president, who is linked to the ‘monthly allowance’ scandal, the ending of Forum Privilege which allows politicians to be tried by special courts and an immediate investigation into the costs and corruption involved in hosting the World Cup.    Beth

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One voice … one youth



In a few days I will leave Cristino Castro and head to Rio De Janeiro  for the World Youth Day 2013There I will meet with other Assumption volunteers and together we will  spend four weeks working  in a project that supports children and young people.

I am excited and looking forward to this very special opportunity to meet with the Holy Father and to share the experience of faith with other young Catholics throughout the world.   Martina

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Millions protest across Brazil


Dramatic scenes of protest across Brazil as millions take to the streets to demand change.  What started as an increase in transport costs that attracted 10,000 protesters has become a million person march against corruption, police brutality, poor public services and excess spending on mega-events. As Jamaime Schmitt put it,

There are no politicians who speak for us. This is not just about bus fares any more. We pay high taxes and we are a rich country, but we can’t see this in our schools, hospitals and roads.  Guardian report.

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What difference should a day make?

Today, 20th June, is World Refugee Day. A day set aside by the United Nations to

honor the courage, strength and determination of women, men and children who are forced to flee their homes under threat of persecution, conflict and violence

Millions need your help.

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