3-H project shines the light of literacy in Brazil
A Rotarian literacy initiative supported by a Rotary Foundation 3-H grant has helped thousands of Brazilian children learn to read and write.
A Rotary Foundation 3-H Grant that introduced the concentrated language encounter
(CLE) method to Brazil in 2001 continues to boost literacy rates among low-income families throughout the country.
With support from the Foundation, Brazilian host partners in districts 4520, 4560, and 4760 and international partners in districts 6900 (Georgia, USA) and 7080 (Ontario, Canada) developed a US$344,862 project that set up a CLE training center in Contagem, Minas Gerais.
Today, more than 1,900 teachers and other educational experts have learned the method that has taught more than 72,600 beneficiaries how to read and write. Through CLE, students learn from group texts and activities rather than rote memorization and repetition. With low costs and a highly interactive aspect that is popular with students, CLE programs have proven effective in numerous developing countries.
“In this area, we’ve had a big problem with functional illiteracy,” says Glaúcia Rosa Alves, a trainer at one of the centers. “We needed a low-cost and effective method, and then Rotary came.”
Dozens of local Rotary clubs are now promoting and supporting CLE methodology in Brazil. The
active involvement of local Rotarians has also led to numerous non-grant projects to help schools with materials, meals, and health care.
One school that adopted the method is Sônia Braga Ribeiro, an oasis in a crime-ridden area of Contagem. Many of the students come from destitute families who must collect trash to
make a living.
“For many students, the school becomes a second home,” says Eduardo Krafetuski, a past District 4760 governor and coordinator of the project. “The CLE method is successful because students work in groups, so if one student is struggling, his classmates will help him out.”
This article appeared in the 2008 January issue of Rotary World .
Also available on RVM: The Rotarian Video Magazine DVD, Volume 3, issue 2.