Brazil’s Minister of Sports, Agnelo Queiroz, on Friday, February 3, inaugurated 50 more Segundo Tempo (Second Half) Program centers, designed to promote the social inclusion of children and adolescents from deprived communities through the practice of sports.
The new centers, which are located in Rio de Janeiro favelas (shantytowns), will benefit 10,000 public school students in the 7-14 age bracket.
The sports include soccer, swimming, track and field, volleyball, basketball, team handball, "capoeira" [an Afro-Brazilian form of self-defense], and there is also dance. Besides sports, the program offers school reinforcement classes in Portuguese and math.
At the covenant-signing ceremony, minister Queiroz emphasized that around 70% of his Ministry’s budget is allocated to the Second Half Program.
According to the Minister, the purpose of the program is to strengthen the social protection network for children and adolescents.
"We serve a million of Brazil’s children, and the tendency is to grow. That is President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s desire."
The Second Half Program is active in around 900 Brazilian municipalities. In Rio de Janeiro alone, the program reaches around 100,000 children and adolescents in 15 municipalities.