Supporters are welcome to visit and establish links with any of the projects and to see and discuss the situations first had with our local project coordinators and teachers.
But be warned – Several of the projects are in dangerous areas.
Your safety is paramount. We strongly advise you go with a COB representative – if you are visiting Salvador drop us an e-mail and we will be happy to arrange to collect you from your hotel (if you are in Salvador) and take you to see one or more of the projects. This is much safer for everyone, and you will get much more out of your visit, particularly if you don’t speak Portuguese well (Ana and some others speak good English).
If you are a well seasoned traveler you might want to venture there under your own steam, however the following advice should be noted:
- Make an appointment with the project (through COB) before you go
- Go with a local – Never go alone
- Don’t wear or take anything valuable
- If you take a taxi, get it to wait for you
- Get the driver to go and find someone who is expecting you
- Ideally don’t stay too long – they generally have a lot to do
- Never be left alone with the children (this should not happen anyway)
- Carry some form of ID and our contact details in case the authorities visit and want to know who you are
- Please do not take too many photographs, particularly of the children (there are laws regarding this in Brazil).
Why not take an extra bag full of goodies for the children – usually asking around friends, family and colleagues can rustle up a pile of free stuff such as:
- Children’s clothes & shoes
- Nappies, Babies bottles & general baby stuff
- Pens, Pencils, colouring books
- Some toys, games and sweets
Don’t worry about sizes – anything they can’t use is either stored away for a needy child or sold – nothing is ever wasted.
You can make a donation when in Brazil – please hand it to a COB representative – or alternatively send it to us directly on your return. If you wish to give money to a project direct we would be delighted – but please do discuss it with your COB representative – they may not be able to cash your cheque and passing what will probably amount to a large amount of cash (in local terms) can be difficult and even dangerous for the people receiving it.
All money is carefully allocated and accounted for. Cash payments in Brazil are possible but need to be done carefully (e.g. pass it to COB somewhere safe, we will make sure your wishes are adhered to and will provide a receipt and ongoing report on the project you are supporting).
Similarly if you take lots of things for the children please discuss it with either COB or the Project Leader before handing the stuff out – they may not wish to give it all out straight away. Reasons for this can include using ensuring a fair distribution, using some items as incentives, saving some for Birthdays / Christmas etc.
if you can
The Children of Bahia
76 Whipton Lane
Devon. EX1 3DN