“In addition to the meetings for the development of musical skills, all the students participated in the ‘CreSer Course’ (Percurso CreSer), a moment to talk about and reflected on our community, our families, our interpersonal relationships and even about who we were or, should I say , who we wanted to be”, she explains. “What I learned and what grew in me during those meetings became part of my life as a daughter, as a student, as a citizen and as a professional”, she says.
Alex Martins de Oliveira is the same age as Bianca and was also one of the children who took part in the Tree of Life. “I started in February 2006, one month before I was old enough to join the program, which was 11 years old, but my insistence was so great that they made an exception,” he laughs. “I started the percussion classes and that year I had the opportunity to participate in the presentation of the Primeiro de Maio Fiat (Fiat’s May First Day) at the Mineirão stadium, Minas Gerais, Brazil. It was unforgettable”, he recalls. Today, Alex is a Fiat employee “for the past two and a half years.” He says he has seen many places while enrolled in the program, attended the sports workshop, income-generation classes and joined FCA for the first time as a young apprentice.
As a young apprentice at Fiat, Alex has taken professional courses in mechanics and as administrative assistant at the National Industrial Learning Service, Senai. “I concluded my contract with Fiat with the feeling of accomplishment. Then, four years after leaving the Tree of Life, I returned to do a course for tow operator. I thought it was just another course, but then I discovered that some of the students who stood out had a chance of getting into Fiat. God blessed me and on August 19, 2015 I was hired and here I am till today”, he celebrates.
At the age 15, Bianca was invited to be a monitor for the Singing Choir Workshop and it was there that she began to build her first professional experiences. She completed High School and then her Psychology degree. With the new training, Bianca took over the activities for Human Training (the CreSer Course) for the 50 or so students who were monitors. She later left the program to do her internships, including one at FCA that lasted two years. “Those two years at Fiat were also a rich learning experience. I conducted trainings, projects with young learners from the transportation sector, I helped with the Retirement Preparation Program, psychological care in the factory and other activities”, she says.
“Now, as a psychologist, I look at each of the experiences I’ve had in the Tree and I see how much those first four years there were important for my personal and professional development.” The Jardim Teresópolis community, which is often marked by marginality and criminality, is actually rich. Rich in residents who believe and fight for better days, young people and adolescents who seek new perspectives for life”, she concludes.