A prolific future for Sergio in Brazil - #putchildrenfirst

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Sergio Bruno had already been through several forms of institutional care and a foster family by the time he arrived at the SOS Children’s Village in Rio Bonito, Brazil. The eight-year-old found the environment strange at first, “because I had spent seven years of my life without a family structure, and suddenly came across a mother and eight brothers,” he explains.

Sergio studied diligently and achieved high marks at the local SOS school, which was classified as one of the best schools in the region. When he was sixteen, an SOS worker noticed his aptitude for computer sciences and provided funding for Sergio to be trained in IT hardware. There is growing demand in Brazil for entry-level ICT (information and communication technology) professionals, and Sergio’s training, as well as his internship at the national office of SOS Children’s Villages Brazil, has paved his entrance to the labour market. He is currently teaching at an SOS “Connecting Futures” project, which equips youth with both technical and soft skills to help them enter the labour market.

There are currently two active Connecting Futures projects, one in São Paulo and other in the Rio de Janeiro, each training 120 young people each year in the fundamentals of PC technology, networking, and security. Upon completion, participants can not only describe the internal components of a computer, assemble a computer system, install an operating system, and troubleshoot using system tools and diagnostic software, but also use critical thinking and complex problem-solving skills.

Such abilities are key for many young Brazilians to find employment and improve their lives. Brazil has made considerable progress in recent years, but there is still vast inequality. In rural areas such as Bahía and Minas Gerais, nearly one in three people are unable to read or write, while in the urban slums (favelas), extreme poverty forces many children to sleep on the streets and work shining shoes or selling merchandise. A loving home and an education like those Sergio has benefitted from would make a world of difference to them.

Although he is not finished learning – he hopes to obtain Cisco CCNA certification in network engineering – Sergio says that the opportunity to teach at Connecting Futures “was an answered prayer. I always wanted to do something for SOS. As their instructor, I encourage the students to build their own success stories, with professionalism and determination”.

For more of our Put Children First campaign, please follow our Twitter and Facebook. Keep others in the loop by using the hashtag #putchildrenfirst!

Canadian's wishing to support SOS Children's Villages are encouraged to sponsor a child, sponsor a village or to make a direct donation. Your support ensures that SOS Children's Villages can continue to provide a safe and loving home to orphan and abandoned children worldwide.

Canadians wishing to help vulnerable children are encouraged to sponsor a child, sponsor a Village or make a one-time donation. Your support will change the lives of orphaned, abandoned and other vulnerable children. Please help today.