Sementes a CrescerC is dedicated to after school support for children fom antiga Curraleira. It is integrated into “Programa Escolhas” and financed by the Portuguese State.
Its major objective is to change low education levels and low estimation of education within the families within the neighborhood, by facilitating better social inclusion of the younger generation.
“Localmente, e muito devido a fatores culturais, continua a existir uma mentalidade de desvalorização de processos educativos e formativos, assim como muitos jovens abandonarem os seus percursos educativos/formativos, envolvendo-se em trajetórias de informalidade ligada a práticas criminais, que mesmo sendo grupos minoritários têm forte impacto na comunidade.”
Furthermore many of the children have Sinti& Roma backgrounds. Strict adherence to a traditional lifestyle contribute to the disintegration of the children. Many girls quit school earlier in order to get married and be responsible of the family.
The numbers of Sinti& Roma families are hard to define, because they are not registered as a minority and formally count as Portuguese citizens. Furthermore the good integration of “ciganos” within antiga Curraleira complicates the collection of data. However Sementes a Crescer has found out that in the primary school of antiga Curraleira 94 children of 1383 have Sinti & Roma background. In contrast to reports about Sinti& Roma families in Portugal that rise attention of the marginalization of Sinti& Roma and their formation of diasporas due to a long history of prosecution and racism, Sementes a Crescer is positive about the integration and states that people from Picheleira and João Nascimento Costa don’t confine themselves from the “ciganos” within their neighborhoods.
Maria Penide from Clube is also positive about the peaceful cohabitation of different and even wants to dedicate one wall of the street art project Pa-redes to this matter. During the radio Session Radio Curra FM children speak as well positively about the good integration and conviviality between different ethnies.