Brazil: The city of Capão Bonito is 155 years old with a population of about 47,000 and agriculture as the main source of income. Capão Bonito is one of the poorest regions in the state of São Paulo, mainly because of high infant mortality, malnutrition, homelessness, unemployment and the very poor road conditions. Much has improved in recent years, yet there is much to do.
Escola de Waldorf Capão Bonito is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1974 out of the wish to establish a first Waldorf Kindergarten in the region. Since its foundation the initiative has been able to provide quality education to children from various social backgrounds.
In 1994 a primary school was established and each year a new grade was added up to class 9. The aim of school has always been to have a complete high school from which its students can graduate – a dream that continues up to today. Currently the school has six kindergarten groups and nine grades in elementary and high school, attended by a total of 217 students.
The financial situation of the school is rather difficult. Time and again the school has had to fight for its survival. There have been situations where the school had to take out bank loans and with a variety of events the school has been able to cover some of the additional expenses. To date, the school’s expenditures (wages, maintenance, repairs, renewals, etc.) are higher than its income (school fees, fixed income, bazaar sale).
Since its foundation, the school is also open to socially disadvantaged and financially weak students whose tuition is supported by the community. To be able to continue to do so it is important that the school receives more help from abroad. It has already been proven that the social inclusion of disadvantaged children has a positive effect on the children themselves and their families as well.