Desporto no Bairro grows at the pace of passion and trust

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Those who saw them, on Friday night, about a hundred, rhythmic, confident, and cheerful, on the stage set up on Avenida dos Aliados could witness the relevance that Desporto no Bairro (Sports in the Neighbourhood) has already conquered the lives of young people from 17 districts of Porto. The municipal program offers classes in breaking, skateboarding, surfing, and street basketball, with the certainty that it is always everything more than “just” sport.

"The program is proof that sport, in addition to its physical component, can and should be a school of citizenship, inclusion, freedom, tolerance and ethics. If it is not always like that in sport, it has always been like that in 'Desporto no Bairro'", underlines the Councillor for Sport and Youth.

Realizing that “the importance of this program does not come from the fantastic numbers, but from the testimonies of these children”, Catarina Araújo assures that Desporto no Bairro, which has already been on a four-year mission, “will continue in a reinforced and deepened way, with a new investment from the Porto City Council”.

Some have already passed on the testimony to the youngest, but there are also those who have made a point of being part of the "crew" for several years and, therefore, always say "present" when the monitors arrive in the neighbourhoods where they live. There are even those who, from shyness to experiencing it for the first time, have already passed on, four years later, to trainer or assistant.

Accustomed to performing at Coliseu Porto Ageas or Super Bock Arena - Rosa Mota Pavilion, this was the open-air premiere, in the heart of the city. Never alone, this time the young people shared the stage and the applause with New Max, the voice of Expensive Soul, the Aeternus Cantabile choir, the beatbox of Fresh 'mic, the music of DJ Godzi, the performance of Vanessa, "one of the best b-girls in the world", the skate dance solo of Ratin and the basket dance performance of Bia Lamelas.

Desporto no Bairro is a municipal program promoted by the Porto City Council, in partnership with the MXM Art Center, since 2020, to promote the practice of Olympic modalities with children and young people from 17 municipal neighbourhoods.

Currently, it is considered a reference program at the national level because it is a preventive instrument for risky behaviours, providing the empowerment of the younger layers through sports.

For the coordinator of the initiative, this project “presents a menu of possible sports passions. In a very organic and equal-to-equal way, [young people] encounter new modalities, horizons, people, and different experiences".

"It gives them the possibility of finding new loves, which leads them to new paths", believes Max Oliveira.