Mães da Favela Project

Project name :

Mães da Favela Project

Project duration :


Location :


Reinforcing the emergency efforts for people at risk, UNESCO in Brazil will help the NGO Central Única of Favelas (CUFA), which carries out a set of relevant community projects in all 27 Brazilian states, particularly in urban centres and Brazilian favelas. 

More specifically, UNESCO will support the methodological aspects of the “Mães da Favela” (Mothers of the Favelas) Project, which aims at providing support to households led by women that have had their income affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

About CUFA

CUFA (Central Union of the Slums) is a Brazilian non-governmental organization with more than 20 years of social work in favelas (slums) and periphery territories by implementing cultural, artistic, sports, educational and social responsibility projects.

CUFA is present in several favelas in the 26 Brazilian states and the Federal District. It is a nationally awarded institution and internationally recognized for its actions and projects. Among the awards it has received, there is one assigned by the United Nations.

One of its main objectives is to be a vector for promoting social integration and inclusion for empowering favela populations, as well as their symbolic and physical integrity.

In times of COVID-19 pandemic, part of the world in social isolation. However, a good portion of the 13.6 million favela residents in Brazil is out on the streets. They need to guarantee their daily bread by providing essential services, such as working in garbage collection or delivery services; as assistants in supermarkets, pharmacies or gas stations; as well as in building ordinances or working as security guards, nannies, and caregivers for the elderly.

Besides, CUFA points out that social inequality, unemployment and informality are the social issues that make Brazilian favelas more exposed to risks. Therefore, the slums need further attention in the fight against COVID-19, since the disease requires personal hygiene and social distance for its prevention. In most favela homes, at least five family members are living in a single-room house with no water sanitation nor freshwater provision.

Thus, CUFA, in partnership with social institutions and organizations, leads awareness-raising campaigns on the issue through the promotion of its actions in all states, together with communication and cooperation networks between favelas.

According to the DATA and CUFA survey, of the total of families living in favelas in Rio de Janeiro:


have difficulty buying basic food items


have no money to stay at home for a week during this crisis


of favela households are headed by women


of these women work as autonomous

Mães da Favela Project

Due to the figures above, the generation of income for these mothers is vital at this moment.

The Mães da Favela Project was created by CUFA. Its main objective is to bring income to the largest possible number of mothers living in social vulnerability in these territories.

The project consists of helping “single” mothers living in slums in 17 states and the Federal District who are being hit hard by the impacts of COVID-19. This project is part of the CUFA programme against the virus.

How are donations made to the project?

Donations are made through its official website (www.maesdafavela.com.br) and through the PicPay application via @CUFA.

The donation, whether of an individual or legal entity, is made through a transfer from the donor account on the platform to the CUFA account, which, in turn, receives the amounts and distributes them to the mothers who are most vulnerable among the vulnerable ones.

Learn more: