Educate the Favela is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) that operates in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, with current projects in the community of Complexo do Alemão. Our philosophy is simple: Education transforms lives and communities and it should be available to everyone. Our VISION is to empower underprivileged teenagers and broaden their horizons with life changing education and experiences. Our MISSION is to provide sustainable, high quality practical business education to these teenagers and contribute positively to their local community. Our PROJECTS are targeted to meet community needs, small-scale, sustainable and scalable. We are a small team of passionate volunteers, based in Rio de Janeiro and internationally around the globe, and are working consistently to generate fundraising and maintain and develop partnerships to support our projects.


Brazil is a country of great opportunity. But as the world watches this developing nation prepare to host the 2016 Olympic Games, it is important to remember that Brasil has an average income less than half the OECD average and an unacceptable part of the population lives below the poverty line and without effective access to basic necessities. Complexo do Alemão is a collective group of favela communities situated in the North Zone of Rio de Janeiro. As one of the largest communities in Rio, Complexo has a long and somewhat jaded history of violence and poverty. Despite now being part of the government’s UPP program and the presence of many extraordinary individuals creating a more just and prosperous community, the lingering reputation means that, in general, the community receives less social aid than other favela communities. The result is that both uncertainty and a lack of vision is evident in the minds of the youth living in the community. By providing free, practical education opportunities and community assistance, Educate the Favela strives to open the minds and broaden the horizons of these teenagers, to foster the entrepreneurs and community leaders of tomorrow, as well as to nurture and grow the vibrant community spirit and support existing education programs.


When a community volunteering opportunity brought together our entrepreneurial founder, Yannick Struijk, and operational front-man, Lohran Santos, in early 2015, common passions were ignited. With a united goal of improving education and creating opportunities for Brasil’s underprivileged teenagers, the idea was born to create a business education program to bridge a critical gap in existing schools and empower these teens with the vision and skills to achieve their potential. After developing a project plan for the idea, Yannick was awarded seed funding from US social entrepreneurship group (resolutionproject.org) and commenced setup of the Educate the Favela NGO and development of the new business curriculum. Concurrently in 2015, Educate the Favela commenced volunteer activities in Complexo do Alemão, including Voluntário nas Escolas, brining volunteers to schools in need, and Lohran’s street art, alley-way painting project, including two Festa do Trabalho workshops. 2016 will see the start of the exciting new Novos Líderes business and entrepreneurial training programs, along with important new partnerships and growth of the existing projects to ensure sustainability and financial support of our free business education program.


Educate the Favela is a professional non-profit organisation registered with the chamber of commerce. All our donations and capital are free of taxes and hence we can make the largest possible impact. Our chamber of commerce number (KvK-nummer) is: 61695254